Trump Jr. denies colluding with the Russians
by Evan Wilt
Posted 9/07/17, 01:51 pm
WASHINGTON—Donald Trump Jr. met behind closed doors with staff members of the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday, telling them he only agreed to meet with a Russian attorney during the 2016 presidential campaign to assess Hillary Clinton’s “fitness” for office. The committee chairman, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, did not attend but let his investigators ask questions while some senators watched. Earlier this year, Trump Jr., President Donald Trump’s eldest son, admitted to a June 2016 meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya, who said she had damaging information about Clinton. In a 10-minute opening statement before the committee, Trump Jr. said, “To the extent they had information concerning the fitness, character, or qualifications of a presidential candidate, I believed that I should at least hear them out,” according to a copy of prepared testimony obtained by The New York Times. “Depending on what, if any, information they had, I could then consult with counsel to make an informed decision as to whether to give it further consideration.” Trump Jr. said the meeting ended up being a waste of time. Grassley subpoenaed Trump Jr. earlier this year to meet with the committee as part of its probe of alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. The panel still plans to schedule a public hearing with Trump Jr.
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Evan is a reporter for WORLD Digital based in Washington, D.C.