Trump Jr. says he didn't tell his Dad before meeting Russians

Donald Trump Jr. at the White House on April 2Chip Somodevilla  CNP via ZUMA

The Wall Street Journal story on the release of the transcripts offers no news other than the release of the transcripts and an ominous statement of the meeting's alleged goal ("A Senate committee on Wednesday released thousands of pages of testimony concerning a 2016 meeting between representatives of Donald Trump and a group of Russians who promised incriminating information about his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton").

Mr Putin said in an interview in March that he did not know until after the fact that Mr Trump had visited Moscow, despite efforts by Mr Trump and his associates to arrange a meeting through Mr Putin's staff. He insisted he was "skeptical" of the meeting from the beginning and noted the skepticism "was justified" because he received "no meaningful information" from the Russian lawyer. The email he refers to is from Rob Goldstone, the publicist, to Trump Jr. on June 3, 2016, and that "someone" turned out to be Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya, who attended the June 9, 2016 Trump Tower meeting along with Trump Jr., Paul Manafort (Donald Trump's then-campaign manager), and Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner.

FILE - Donald Trump pictured at a Global Business Summit in New Delhi, India, Feb. 23, 2018.

"Could you please focus a bit more and maybe just start again?'" Goldstone recalled of the meeting, according to transcripts released by the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday.

While speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) stated Russian Federation "didn't like Hillary" and was "trying to help" Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) in the 2016 election, and increased their efforts when then-candidate Trump became the "central figure" for the GOP.

The House intelligence committee's report, prepared by its Republican majority, said that there were unspecified "significant intelligence tradecraft failings" with the assessment.

In his testimony, Trump Jr said he couldn't remember whether or not his father was involved in drafting an initial statement in response to the meeting.

The Senate Intelligence Committee is expected to release a declassified version of its report on the ICA's findings in the coming weeks. Among those attending was lobbyist and former Soviet counterintelligence officer Rinat Akhmetshin.

More news: 'Be Cool!': Trump Offers Words Of Wisdom On Trade Talks With China

Trump Junior said he doesn't remember discussing the Russian Federation investigation with this father. "Mr. Trump, Jr., said, 'So I believe you have some information for us'". During the campaign, Torshin, Butina, and their intermediaries "repeatedly offered the [Trump] campaign back channels to Russian Federation and relayed requests from President Putin to meet with Mr. Trump", the committee wrote.

"It was the gorilla in the room that had to be addressed, but there seemed to be no answer to address it", Mr Goldstone told the committee.

Rob Goldstone, a music promoter who acted as an intermediary between Trump Jr and the Russians, said no damaging information was presented to the campaign team. But the panel released her written responses to a letter that Grassley sent her a year ago.

There was no dirt disclosed in the meeting, instead Veselnitskaya wanted to talk about US imposed sanctions on Russian Federation under Magnitsky Act. And or people who participated in June 2016, five months after presidential elections, in a Meeting with a Russian lawyer in NY. Later, however, Trump Jr. released emails showing he agreed to the meeting after he was promised dirt on Clinton.

"You know, Don Jr. did testify" before the House Intelligence Committee, as well, King said.

"He has this odd fascination not only with the strongmen, but the nearly retro male chauvinist culture that they have still in Russian Federation", said Evelyn Farkas, a former deputy assistant secretary of defense for Russian Federation in the Obama administration.

Trump Jr. also met behind closed doors with the Senate Intelligence Committee.

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