Published: Mon, August 06, 2018
World News | By Laverne Osborne

Trump admits son met with Russian to get information on Hilary

Trump admits son met with Russian to get information on Hilary

When the Trump Tower "dirt" meeting was first revealed last summer, Donald Trump Jr. claimed in a statement that the gathering had focused on adoption policy. Trump wrote. "They are very risky & sick!" That initial statement said the meeting "primarily" involved a discussion of an obscure law governing American adoptions of Russians - not opposition research on Hillary Clinton.

Trump's admission that his son's 2016 Russian meeting was to get information on Clinton runs counter to the narrative he has previously pushed about the meeting.

He later admitted he accepted the meeting with Veselnitskaya in hopes of obtaining damaging information on Clinton, but said nothing came of it.

One of Mr Trump's lawyers, Jay Sekulow, said on Sunday that the meeting had nor broken any laws.

The president's attorneys at first denied Trump's involvement in drafting the response to the Times, but months later, in a letter meant to explain why Mueller should not interview Trump, they agreed that the president had, in fact, been the author of the statement. And despite Trump's public Twitter denial, the president has expressed worry that his son may face legal exposure even as he believes he did nothing wrong, according to three people close to the White House familiar with the president's thinking but not authorized to speak publicly about private conversations.

He reiterated that he had no prior knowledge of the 20-minute meeting when it happened, adding that "it went nowhere".

"Most politicians would have gone to a meeting like the one Don jr attended in order to get info on an opponent", Trump wrote on Twitter. At the time, Trump and his White House had falsely claimed that he had only offered his input into the crafting of the statement.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller is investigating U.S. intelligence findings that Russians conspired to sway the election in Mr Trump's favour.

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"The question is how will it be illegal?"

"If it's what you say I love it", Trump Jr. responded.

Sekulow also said that Trump has not decided whether he would voluntarily sit for an interview with U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who was appointed to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election and any possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Moscow officials.

In addition to weighing in publicly on the Trump Tower meeting, the president also unleashed angry tweets directed at the news media Sunday morning from his 11-day working vacation in Bedminster, New Jersey. As an analysis by the University of Kentucky Election Law Society clearly explains, under USA law, "any contribution by a foreign national to the campaign of an American candidate for any election, state or national, is illegal", and any campaign of a candidate who accepts foreign aid is committing a crime.

The president's lawyers argue that the meeting, in and of itself, violated no laws. Trump has seethed against what he feels are trumped-up charges against his former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, whose trial began last week and provided a visible reminder of Mueller's work. Perhaps the Trumps, as they claim, didn't take any help from the Kremlin to win the 2016 election - but as even the president now acknowledges, they definitely wanted it.

We have since learned that the elder Trump actually dictated that statement. Others have said the meeting could provide clues to a broader conspiracy by Trump officials with Russians.

Sekulow also downplayed comments made by the president's other attorney, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who recently said that collusion is not a crime, calling them "rather unremarkable".

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