Trump Jr. invents fake 'privilege' to justify stonewalling Congress

James Marshall
December 10, 2017

Adam Schiff said that Trump Jr. said he couldn't speak about the conversations with his father this summer because of attorney-client privilege, telling the committee a lawyer was present when he spoke to his father about the June 2016 meeting and the emails that led up to it.

The traditional elements of attorney-client privilege are: (1) a communication; (2) made between privileged persons; (3) in confidence; (4) for the goal of seeking, obtaining or providing legal assistance to the client. Initially, of course, the Trump White House and Trump Jr. claimed that the meeting was about the sanctions imposed by the so-called Magnisky Act and the issue of the adoption of Russian babies by American citizens, which was in limbo in wake of the sanctions imposed after Russia's annexation of the Crimean region of Ukraine.

Donald Trump Jr. spent almost eight hours testifying in a closed session before members of the House Intelligence Committee on Wednesday.

"We will be following up with his counsel", Schiff said.

"From my perspective, all of our questions were answered", he told reporters. He also said he did not know that she was providing any of his research to the Trump campaign.

This was the second time Trump Jr. faced grilling from lawmakers about the Russian meeting.

A new CNN report Thursday details freshly discovered emails which were sent after that infamous Trump Tower meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and various Russians.

Trump Jr, like his father, denies collusion with Russian Federation.

Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner, Trump's son-in-law, attended the meeting with several Russians under the impression that they might receive damaging information about Trump's rival, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

Special counsel Robert Mueller is believed to have a keen interest in the Capitol Hill questioning and the Russian meeting.

But her denial is inconsistent with previous reporting and with what Simpson, a former Wall Street Journal reporter, told the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) in a closed-door interview last month. A focus of that testimony was a report that Prince tried to set up a "back channel" for communications between Trump associates and Russian Federation.

According to the transcript, which was partially redacted, Prince told the panel he met a Russian with ties to President Vladimir Putin in the Seychelles islands earlier this year, but he denies he was representing Trump in the exchange.

First, Wright says, Congress does not feel bound to honor attorney-client privilege because it is a common law evidentiary privilege. Other lawmakers, Republicans as well as Democrats, say the goal of the investigations is to guarantee the integrity of USA elections, not to target Trump and his associates.

At the time he was working on that case, Simpson and his firm, Fusion GPS, were also working with former British intelligence operative Christopher Steele on the infamous Trump dossier. USA intelligence agencies concluded that Russian Federation attempted to influence the 2016 campaign to boost Trump's chances of defeating Clinton.

However, Clinton has made no secret of her belief that then-FBI Director James Comey's announcement just before the election that the bureau was investigating potential new evidence in the lengthy email probe cost her the White House.

In her 51-page statement to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Veselnitskaya said she did not work for the Russian government and was not carrying any messages from government officials.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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