March 20, 2019

Kushner sought secret back channel with Russia

29 May 2017, 04:10 | Rhonda Young

The White House was essentially quiet when news broke last week, when President Trump was overseas, that Kushner was part of a federal investigation into Trump's inner circle allegedly colluding with Russian Federation during the elections.

He says that "whenever you see the words "sources say" in the fake news media, and they don't mention is very possible that those sources don't exist but are made up by fake news writers".

Trump aides traveling with the president in Europe have refused to address the contents of Kushner's December meeting with the Russian diplomat.

U.S. President Donald Trump celebrated his first diplomatic trip overseas Sunday by ramping up complaints against the news media and decrying the lack of post-election coverage of the Montana congressional race that saw a Republican elected the day after he knocked a reporter to the ground, breaking his glasses.

U.S. President Donald Trump dismissed many unidentified sources as phony and said leaks from the White House were "fake news" on Sunday, following reports his son-in-law Jared Kushner tried to set up a secret channel of communications with Moscow before Trump took office.

Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House intelligence committee, said Sunday the allegation that a key Trump campaign figure sought secret communications with a country that intervened in a US election was serious. Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said on ABC's "This Week" that Kushner should appear before the panel and that his security clearance needs to be reviewed. He said in a tweet that he would make a final decision next week on whether to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement, in which almost 200 countries pledged to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions in an effort to combat global warming.

"It is my opinion that numerous leaks coming out of the White House are fabricated lies", he tweeted. The Washington Post is reporting that the FBI is investigating meetings that Trump's son-in-law, Kushner, had in December 2016, with Russian officials.

He also acknowledged that intelligence like this would have triggered the FBI's extra attention on Kushner.

"I think it makes no sense that the Russian ambassador would report back to Moscow on a channel that he most likely knows we're monitoring", Graham said. More attorneys with deep experience in Washington investigations are expected to be added, along with crisis communication experts, to help the White House in the weeks ahead.

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly on Sunday brushed off reported attempts by President Trump's son-in-law to set up a back channel communication with Russian Federation as no big deal.

James Clapper, the former national intelligence director, described the general nature of communications between Kushner and Russian Federation as a red flag. He was interviewed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in January about his contacts with Kislyak.

Kushner's lawyer has said his client is willing to talk to federal and congressional investigators about the matter.

Corker also said he has spent a lot of time with Kushner.

The request from the committee arrived last week at campaign headquarters in NY, according to person familiar with the request who wasn't authorized to discuss the developments publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity. The move came during a meeting with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

"Mr. Kushner previously volunteered to share with Congress what he knows about these meetings", Gorelick said in a statement Thursday.

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