On Thursday, a reporter asked Donald Trump about his son’s meeting with Natalia Veselnitskaya at a joint press conference with France’s President Emmanuel Macron in Paris. His answer was absolutely stunning.
First, as the footage from Fox News shows, the GOP’s president talked about how proud he is of his choice of FBI Director. What he fails to mention is that Chris Wray has ties to not one, but two oil companies owned by Russia’s government. As ANX reported earlier, Wray’s law firm, King & Spalding, represents Rosneft and Gazprom.
Donald Trump then launched into his stunning defense for his son, Donald Trump Jr.
“As far as my son is concerned, my son is a wonderful young man. He took a meeting with a Russian lawyer, not a government lawyer, but a Russian lawyer. It was a short meeting, it was a meeting that went very, very quickly, very, very fast. Two other people were in the room, one of them left immediately, the other one wasn’t really focused on the meeting.”
Of course he’s dodging the question. For starters, whether Jared Kushner left early while disgraced former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort kept checking his cellphone — as reported when The New York Times broke the story — is irrelevant. Second, Veselnitskaya does work for the Russian government. How do we know for sure? She said so herself in a deposition while defending a shadowy company called Prevezon Holdings against a lawsuit by the U.S. government over a money laundering scheme that involved the Russian government.
Donald Trump then went on to claim that pretty much anyone in politics would have met with a Russian lawyer if it meant getting dirt on your opponent.
“I do think this, I think from a practical standpoint, most people would have taken that meeting. It’s called ‘opposition research’ or even ‘research into your opponent.’ That’s very standard in politics. It’s not the nicest business in the world, but that’s very standard, where they have information and you take the information.”
Um, no it’s not. Opposition research is one thing, colluding with a known agent of the Kremlin is another. Veselnitskaya’s deposition reveals that the U.S. government denied her visas to enter the country at first, even though she was defending a client. When she finally obtained a grudging temporary “parole letter” to enter the country, she describes being harassed and followed by government agents. Obviously, someone high up had some serious concerns.
After insisting nothing happened at the meeting and they’d just talked about adoption, he began to blame Donald Trump Jr.’s woes on the Obama administration. Why? Because they allowed her into the country.
“Now, the lawyer who went into the meeting, I see that she was in the halls of Congress. Somebody said that her visa or her passport to come into the country was approved by [Obama’s] Attorney General [Loretta] Lynch. Maybe that’s wrong, I just heard that a little while ago. I was surprised to hear it. So she was here because of Lynch.”
Seriously, you have to see this to believe it.
Watch Donald Trump defend his son’s meeting, then blame the fallout on Barack Obama.
As for the lawsuit , Joon H. Kim, acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced Prevezon Holdings was allowed to settle for just $5.8 million. Apparently, this came down from Trump’s Dept. of Justice. Business Insider reports Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions asking about the suspiciously sudden settlement back in May.
Featured image: Video screen grab via Fox News.