Senate Intelligence Committee issues subpoena to Donald Trump, Jr.

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The Senate Intelligence Committee, somewhat surprisingly, has issued a subpoena to the president’s idiot son, Donald Trump Jr. Donald Trump Jr. subpoenaed by Senate panel for further testimony on campaign’s Russia contacts:

[The Senate is] seeking additional closed-door testimony as part of lawmakers’ ongoing probe of Russian interference in the U.S. presidential election, according to people familiar with the summons.

Trump Jr. has been a focus of several probes — including special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation — over his involvement in a June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower with a Russian lawyer who allegedly had promised incriminating information about Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Congressional Democrats think that in his previous turns on Capitol Hill, Trump Jr. may have lied to investigators about that meeting and whether he alerted his father that the meeting would take place.

News of the subpoena was first reported by Axios.

Trump Jr. is “exasperated” by the committee’s actions, according to a person who has discussed the subpoena with him, because he already “offered to continue to cooperate in writing.”

But, but, but … Senator Richard Burr is a Republican, he is supposed to protect me!

The criminal enterprise that is the Party of Trump ripped Senator Burr for issuing a subpoena to the idiot son of their mob boss “Dear Leader.” Republicans rip GOP Intel decision to subpoena Trump Jr. More, Allies of Trump’s Son Declare War on G.O.P.-Led Senate Panel After Subpoena.

Senator Richard Burr has his own splainin’ to do. Mueller report ropes in Senate GOP:

Senate Intelligence Chairman Burr (R-N.C.), for instance, apparently supplied the White House counsel’s office with information about FBI investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election, according to the report. The report says that on March 9, 2017, then-FBI Director James Comey briefed congressional leaders and intelligence committee heads on the ongoing investigation into Russian interference. That briefing included “an identification of the principal U.S. subjects of the investigation.”

Burr then corresponded with the White House a week later about the Russia probes, and the White House counsel’s office, led by Don McGahn, “appears to have received information about the status of the FBI investigation,” the special counsel report said.

It appears that then-House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Devin “Midnight Run” Nunes wasn’t the only one leaking classified information from a criminal investigation of the president to Team Trump. There is no honor among Republicans.

[T]he Intelligence Committee has been trying to schedule a second interview with Trump Jr. for weeks, according to people familiar with the negotiations, who like others spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter. The panel is bringing back several key witnesses for second interviews to give lawmakers a chance to question people previously interviewed only by committee staffers.

The subpoena is not new; it was issued at least a week ago, people familiar with the matter said. But a person close to Trump Jr. argued that no lawyer would allow him to go back to the panel for open-ended questioning.

Junior: “I plead the Fifth! I do not have to provide self-incriminating testimony.” Well, you know what dear old daddy had to say about pleading the Fifth:

“So there are five of them taking the Fifth Amendment, like you see on the mob, right?” Trump said at another rally in Iowa, though it was three former Clinton staff members who pleaded the Fifth. “The mob takes the Fifth Amendment. If you’re innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?

Well, this mob boss would know. Trump blasts those who take the Fifth, but he used it 97 times on adultery questions.

As negotiations over Trump Jr.’s testimony dragged on, committee Chairman Richard Burr (R-N.C.) became increasingly frustrated and believed that Trump Jr. was defying the committee’s authority and not honoring his original agreement, a person familiar with the matter said.

Trump Jr. had always understood that his first appearance was with committee staff and that members reserved the right to call him again so that they could question him, but he continued to put off his appearance, this person said.

Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, appeared for a second closed-door interview with the committee in late March. After Mueller’s report was published, Democrats raised concerns that Kushner also may have lied to lawmakers about a business associate’s collaboration with a Russian banker close to the Kremlin on a project to repair U.S.-Russia relations.

But concerns about Trump Jr.’s statements are potentially more problematic for the president. According to a transcript of Trump Jr.’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, he told lawmakers that he did not tell his father about the Trump Tower meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya. Trump Jr.’s testimony to other committees was in line with the account he gave to the Senate Judiciary panel, several Democrats said.

TrumpTowerMeeting

Yet in Mueller’s report, the president’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, said he recalled being in Trump’s office when Trump Jr. talked about a meeting to get “adverse information” on Clinton. Cohen told Mueller’s team that it appeared that father and son had previously discussed the subject.

And, no, I haven’t forgotten about this highly suspect timeline of events:

At 6:14 p.m. on June 7, 2016, Donald Trump Jr. clicked the send button on an email to confirm a meeting with a woman described as a “Russian government attorney” who would give him “information that would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia.”

Three hours later, his father, Donald J. Trump, claimed victory in the final primary races propelling him to the Republican presidential nomination and a general election contest against former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. In his victory speech, Mr. Trump promised to deliver a major address detailing Mrs. Clinton’s “corrupt dealings” to give “favorable treatment” to foreign governments, including “the Russians.”

Oh yeah, father and son definitely talked about it. Michael Cohen is telling the truth. But since Robert Mueller never interviewed either liar, father or son (how convenient), he failed to develop this highly probative evidence.

NBC News adds:

Trump Jr. testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee in September 2017. He said he was only “peripherally aware” of the Moscow development proposal, which was kept secret from voters.Again, Robert

Michael Cohen, then a lawyer for the Trump Organization, who was pursuing the project, told the committee a different story. He testified that he briefed Trump Jr. and his sister Ivanka Trump about the project “approximately 10” times.

Again, Robert Mueller never interviewed Donald Trump Jr. (how convenient), and gave little attention to Trump Tower Moscow in his report. In fact, Mueller gave little attention to any “kompromat” that Russian financial interests may have played in Trump’s actions. Maybe it is in the ongoing classified counterintelligence investigation. Who the hell knows?

The committee’s investigation has been Congress’s most bipartisan. Yet if Trump Jr. flouts the subpoena, it puts Burr in the awkward position of potentially taking Trump Jr. to court as the president continues his standoff with the House. Burr told The Washington Post this week that he was not inclined to pursue Trump Jr. for perjury over any potential lies, as Mueller did not charge him.

“I would assume that they made a determination either that they weren’t criminal or they weren’t chargeable,” Burr said. “I’m not interested in re-litigating any of Bob Mueller’s conclusions.”

Mueller did not charge Junior because he never interviewed him. His inexplicable failure to do so left him without the predicate evidence to charge him with lying to Congress (how convenient). So Senator Burr should not read too much into the declination not prosecute.

If the Senate Intelligence Committee establishes that Junior lied to them if and when he testifies before the committee (I believe he will plead the Fifth), the committee has an obligation to make a criminal referral to the Justice Department, where “Cover-up General Barr” will protect Junior from any prosecution.

This is otherwise known as obstruction of justice.

UPDATE: The above reporting also left out this:

Democrats have also charged that Don Jr. lied in his testimony when he said he wasn’t aware of any other governments besides Russia that were offering to help the Trump campaign. In fact, he and Stephen Miller had another meeting in Trump Tower in August 2016 with a representative of the Saudi and UAE governments, alon with an Israeli social media specialist and notorious mercenary Erik Prince.

As the New York Times reported in May 2018, “The meeting was convened primarily to offer help to the Trump team.”

As Martin Longman says, “Of the three controversies, the clearest case of dishonesty is his failure to disclose that he received offers of help from the governments of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.”