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From Russia with ‘love it’

The Trump family—father, son, son-in-law—has hedged and hemmed and hawed about the alleged “Russian connection,” the claims that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election.

The American intelligence community agrees with that assessment, and even Trump himself has waffled, lately indicating he thinks it may be so, though he always seems to add a figurative “maybe not.” But Trump has consistently and emphatically denied there was any “collusion” between his campaign and the Russians to discredit Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

Now, however, a bombshell has been delivered to the president by his son, Donald Trump Jr. The younger Trump admits he met with a Russian lawyer in Trump Tower in New York in June 2016, expecting through a connection that she might have some damaging information on Clinton. An email to Trump Jr. from a trusted connection to the Russians stated the Russians’ intent baldly: “This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump.”

Trump Jr. replied within minutes: “If it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer.”

Nothing came of the meeting, said Trump Jr., who initially dismissed the meeting as one sought by the lawyer so she could appeal for changes in a U.S. policy that blacklists Russian human rights violators. But now the lawyer says she was in fact summoned to Trump Tower, and didn’t beg for the meeting herself.

So now the spotlight gets brighter on the Trumps and Russia, and Republicans and Democrats are saying they need to know more from Trump the Younger. And in the background, there is an echo of Watergate in the question now looming over Trump regarding Russian interference in the campaign: What did the president know and when did he know it?

For it appears his son was eager to see if the Russians might have dirt on Clinton, and Trump Jr. didn’t shy away from a meeting to find out. He also called in Jared Kushner, a son-in-law and trusted adviser to Trump Sr., and one-time campaign chief Paul Manafort, who’s made millions representing foreign interests with ties to Russia.

The pressure is going to double, and double again, on the Senate Intelligence Committee, which already has an investigation going on the Russian connection. That committee is chaired by North Carolina Sen. Richard Burr, a Trump supporter whose entire Senate career is going to be defined by whether he aggressively pursues the truth, or whether the investigation simply withers in the shadow of an independent probe by a man who does mean business, former FBI Director Robert Mueller.

Comments

REV2018 says...

There's a point where the investigations become irreversible and the evidence insurmountable. We're there. Even Richard Burr, in cahoots with trump, cannot stop the inevitable.
I believe most Americans are are good and honest people - Democrats and Republicans alike. When push comes to shove, we'll stick together. It's time to decide what this country stands for. Not what this president and his gang can get away with. We have always been a beacon of light in this world. For 300 years, countries and people have turned to us to lead the way. We're not perfect. As a people, we've made mistakes. Some pretty bad ones at times. But we've always had the foresight, wisdom, and courage to change course. Some believe being a global leader is an expensive burden. I believe it's a sacred honor. Can anyone realistically say this planet is not a better place because of the USA? The lunatic fringe maybe. It's time to change course again. I don't condemn folks for voting for trump. They have true and honest concerns for this country. They deserve to be heard. I say that as a liberal Democrat. We've proven time after time over the history of this country that when we All work together, what we accomplish is always amazing. Of course we disagree on things. What family doesn't? We hollar and yell and raise a ruckus. Sometimes they win. Sometimes we win. But we have the U.S. Constitution to keep us true to our values. When a neighbor needs help, how many of us ask what his politics are before we give him a hand? In my experience, the answer is none. Most people don't want a handout. They just want a fair chance to make it on their own. Sure there's some free-loaders but they're a small minority. There'll always be some bad apples. They come in all shapes, colors, sizes, and religions. But we are a great nation because we've always stood up for the little guy - not cowtow to the big guy. King George got that message. We've stood by it ever since.
You may disagree but this president does not represent what we, as a nation, stand for. You may disagree but this president does not represent the kind of leader I want my kids to admire. You may disagree but this president does not represent the nation that my father and his father fought for.
You may disagree but it's time to put an end to this mess and do what's right for our country.
I know we live in a world of tweets but some things need more words to be said.

Posted 17 July 2017, 12:20 p.m. Suggest removal

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