Wednesday, 13 December, 2017

House Intelligence committee questions Donald Trump Jr. on Russian Federation contacts

Trump Jr. says he communicated with Hope Hicks, not his father, about Trump Tower response Donald Trump Jr. Now Claims He Spoke To Hope Hicks, And Not His Father, About His Trump Tower Meeting
Kenny Thornton | 07 December, 2017, 14:35

Donald Trump Jr. has refused to tell USA lawmakers about conversations he had with his father regarding a 2016 meeting he had with several Russians at Trump Tower, a top congressional Democrat said.

Schiff said that while Trump Jr. admitted speaking to his father about his response to reports on the meeting, he "refused to answer questions about that meeting on the basis a claim of attorney client privilege". "There is no attorney client privilege that protects discussion between father and son", Schiff noted.

While Trump Jr. said he did not communicate directly with his father, Hicks was in regular contact with the president through the campaign as well as after the election.

Donald Trump Jr. (R) watches his father Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump leave the stage on the night of the Iowa Caucus in Des Moines, Iowa U.S. February 1, 2016.

Committee Democrats subsequently questioned the legitimacy of Trump Jr.'s privilege claim and raised the possibility of seeking a subpoena to compel him to answer.

Previous reports have said it was the president who personally crafted the misleading initial response.

President Trump has repeatedly denied knowing about the meeting, which included his son, Mr. Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, until it was reported last summer.

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Pressed by Democrats for further details about those conversations, Trump Jr. insisted conversations with his father were privileged, sources in the room said. It was then that Trump Jr., per the sources, said Clinton's testimony was not the same: she was testifying about the 2012 attack in Benghazi where four Americans were killed.

The sources added that Trump Jr. was questioned only by members, with limited exceptions, a majority of which were Democrats.

Veselnitskaya said of the meeting: "Donald Trump, Jr. asked if I had any financial documents proving that what may have been illegally obtained funds were also being donated to Mrs. Clinton's foundation".

His Wednesday session with the House committee was longer and more expansive, and it was the first opportunity elected lawmakers have had to ask Trump Jr. questions directly, instead of leaving that to investigative staff. Goldstone has said he puffed up the language of the original email invitation, the contents of which were dictated to him by Agalarov-whose father is close to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"The only category of question the he declined to answer were, with respect to any discussion with his father about the June 9th meeting, after the emails had been disclosed publicly", Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., told ABC News's Pierre Thomas after the interview.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller is investigating how Trump Jr.'s initial response was crafted.

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