We learned today that Donald Trump’s White House has again lied about yet another staffer meeting with senior Russian officials before Trump took office. This time, it’s Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner.
The New York Times is reporting that the Senate Intelligence Committee wants to question Kushner about a secret meeting an associated of Kushner’s had with the Russian ambassador in late December 2016, and then another secret meeting that Kushner had with Sergey N. Gorkov, the chief of Vnesheconombank, which has been on the US sanctions list since the Russian invasion and annexation of Ukrainian Crimea.
So this would be two additional Russian contacts that the Trump administration has lied about. You’ll recall that Team Trump repeatedly claimed no contacts with the Russians. USA Today counted at least 20 times that Team Trump denied any contacts with the Russians. Now we know that there were a number of such communications, and the list keeps growing.
Among Trump’s contacts who we now know were in touch with the Russians in the year before Trump came to power:
– Roger Stone, ex-Trump campaign staffer and longtime friend.
– Trump himself.
– Carter Page, top Trump foreign policy aide
– JD Gordon, Trump national security aide.
– Jeff Sessions, then GOP senator and now attorney general.
– Michael Flynn, Trump’s then National Security Adviser to be.
– Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law and top foreign policy adviser.
– Avrahm Berkowitz, White House aide and longtime associate of Jared Kushner.
– Jared Kushner again, with sanctioned Russian bank.
Why the lies? And why the lies still at this late date? The White House was hiding the Kushner meetings up until the NYT asked about them for today’s story. Had the Times not asked, the White House likely wouldn’t have divulged Kushner’s secret meetings with the Russians. Why still be so secretive, especially when the Russia story is now at a fever pitch. The normal thing, the smart thing, to do would be to divulge all Trump staff contact with the Russians in one fell swoop, and be done with it. Instead, Trump is denying all of them, and letting them leak one by one as if he has something to hide.
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