For the Trump administration, this is VERY bad! Which is saying a lot considering the numerous other Trump-Russia stories…
Stories regarding Russia and Donald Trump have become such common place in the last few weeks, that in all honesty, they have become almost mundane. With that said, Donald Trump Jr. publicly releasing emails on Twitter that show representatives from the Trump campaign had met with an individual (Natalia Veselnitskaya) claiming to have ties with the Russian government because Veselnitskaya had claimed to have materials to undermine the Hillary Clinton campaign.
See for yourself.
Here's my statement and the full email chain pic.twitter.com/x050r5n5LQ
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) July 11, 2017
Here is page 4 (which did not post due to space constraints). pic.twitter.com/z1Xi4nr2gq
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) July 11, 2017
Yeah, so there is a lot to unpack here, so let’s just dive right in.
It’s weird that this revelation came from someone in the Trump campaign…
I…worked on this story for a year…and…he just…he tweeted it out.
— Jared Yates Sexton (@JYSexton) July 11, 2017
Before we dive deep into how this profoundly changes the Trump-Russia story, we should acknowledge that this email – which confirms our worst fears regarding the Trump campaign’s ties to Russian entities – didn’t come from a leak in the intelligence agency or a journalist that has been tracking down leads for the past year, it came from Donald Trump Jr. releasing the email in a tweet…
To put this into context, this would be like if Richard Nixon’s adult son kept uploading the White House Tapes to the Internet amidst the Watergate investigation. So yeah, process that as you will…
How do the Donald Trump Jr. emails change the overall Trump-Russia story?
So remember when people were talking about whether a smoking gun exists regarding the Trump-Russia investigation? Well, we have something pretty close to it with this email chain!
Here are the things that this email chain confirms about the Trump-Russia stories over the past few months:
- The Trump campaign knowingly had contact with an individual that claimed to be a Russian official during the 2016 presidential campaign.
The Trump campaign tried to work with a foreign entity to undermine the Hillary Clinton campaign, and in turn, tried to work with an outside entity to effect a US presidential election.
The email thread suggests that both Paul Manafort (Donald Trump’s campaign manager in 2016) and Jared Kushner (close advisor to the Trump campaign and current White House advisor) also were in contact with the Russia during the campaign.
The Trump campaign were in the assumption that Russian entities were trying to get Donald Trump elected in 2016.
Basically, for months when President Trump and his surrogates were brushing off the Trump-Russia stories or the investigation surrounding it as “fake news”, this email chain proves that not only was there contact between the Trump campaign and Russian officials during 2016, but an attempt at collusion to effect a US presidential election had taken place!! This also opens the door to other potential investigations into quid pro quo for Russian information by the Trump campaign to if any of President Trump’s associates may have perjured themselves while under oath to Congress. This new revelation basically changes how we frame the Trump-Russia story from “did anything happen” to “what specifically happened.”
That’s a major shift in thinking!
What kind of trouble does the Trump campaign now find themselves in?
DON JR: ok so I hav this email, it says i did it
LAWYER: damn, ok. just don't show anyone
DON JR [lookin up from twitter]: don't b mad
— KRANG T. NELSON (@KrangTNelson) July 11, 2017
After a day of emailing a few legal experts, they said the most obvious charges that Donald Trump Jr. can find himself in is conspiring with a foreign adversary to undermine the US electoral process. Considering Trump JR. himself admits, in the emails, of being in contact with an individual that has ties to the Russian government, in hopes of gaining information to undermine Clinton’s bid for the presidency, it isn’t that far-fetched to think he could be charged with conspiring with Russians to influencing a US election. That, as you may have guessed, could lead to some serious jail time! Also considering Trump Jr. also named both Manafort and Kushner in the email, they could potentially face similar charges of conspiracy as well!
As to how all this relates to President Donald Trump himself, that comes down to if he was privy to what was going on in his campaign headquarters. At worst, President Trump did know there were legitimate contacts between his campaign and Russian officials, which then puts him in the same boat as his son. At best, President Trump had no idea this was going on, which demonstrates gross incompetence on an administrative level considering he didn’t know what’s going on within his own organization. Regardless, neither look is flattering for President Trump.
(Photo Credits: Google Images)