Posted: 9:31 am Wednesday, May 16th, 2018
By Jamie Dupree
In testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Donald Trump Jr. denied doing anything wrong by meeting with a group of Russians who promised ‘dirt’ on Hillary Clinton during the 2016 elections, telling investigators that he did not remember if he had talked about the details of that meeting with his father, the President, as a U.S. Senate panel released hundreds of pages of documents related to the controversial election year meeting at Trump Tower in New York.
“I have no recollection of documents being offered or left for us,” Trump Jr. said. “I did not collude with any foreign government and did not know anyone who did.”
“That was the end of it and there was no further contact or follow-up of any kind,” Trump Jr. said of the June 9, 2016 meeting, which has raised red flags with investigators. “My father knew nothing of the meeting or these events.”
Good catch: Trump (on June 7) and Goldstone (on June 3) both used the words "very interesting" when describing damaging info they'd allegedly received about Hillary Clinton. Trump Jr. called it a coincidence, but acknowledged that he couldn't be sure. pic.twitter.com/O6C5w8XONf
— Natasha Bertrand (@NatashaBertrand) May 16, 2018
The Trump Jr. deposition was just part of over 2,500 pages of documents released by the Senate Judiciary Committee.
“These materials, taken in their entirety, provide the most complete public picture of the events surrounding the meeting to date. Americans can now review this unfiltered information and arrive at their own conclusions,” said Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA), the Chairman of the Judiciary panel.
In the 224 pages of testimony by Trump Jr., investigators repeatedly pressed him on what he expected out of the meeting – which he had said was about Russian adoption issues.
“But what is it that specifically you were interested in getting out of that meeting?” Trump Jr. was asked.
“I was interested in listening to information,” Trump Jr. replied.
“Information of Hillary Clinton?”
“Yes,” Trump Jr. said.
The documents released today include transcripts of interviews with Glenn Simpson, who headed Fusion GPS, the opposition research firm which helped to assemble the Steele Dossier, as well as several people present at the Trump Tower meeting.
Also made public, submissions of documents by President Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, and former Campaign Manager Paul Manafort.
Both Kushner and Manafort refused to be interviewed by committee investigators.
Among the many documents released were emails between people who attended the Trump Tower meeting; one email from Rob Goldstone – who helped set up that meeting – expresses surprise at a breaking news story one week later about Russian hackers being responsible for taking files from the Democratic National Committee.
The documents made public by the Senate also show participants in the Trump Tower meeting scrambling to deal with press reports about the matter, as news emerged in July of 2017.
One email – sent by a person whose name was redacted – questioned the statement of Donald Trump Jr. about the Trump Tower meeting.
“Why did he release this email admitting to collusion?” the unidentified person asked Ike Kaveladze, who was at the June 2016 gathering.
The attachment noted in the above graphic is a tweet from Donald Trump Jr., where he releases emails about the Trump Tower meeting. If you go to that and right click on the graphic to save it, you will get the identical attachment name,”DEdnhw-WsAEbW9N.jpg.”
At one point in his testimony, Trump Jr. was asked about contacts with Wikileaks during the campaign – he volunteered that Wikileaks at one point had asked him to leak his father’s tax return to the group.