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tv   CNN Tonight With Don Lemon  CNN  July 14, 2017 12:00am-1:00am PDT

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someone you think should be the cnn hero. thanks for watching. "white house in crisis" is next. this is cnn breaking news. >> this is a cnn special report. "white house in crisis." breaking tonight. top white house aides now at risk of being dragged into the special counsel's investigation. >> they've been exposed to scrutiny for what they may have known about donald trump jr.'s meeting with a russian lawyer and for their role in crafting the early, incomplete, and changing explanations of what went on. i'm pamela brown. >> and i'm jim sciutto. here's what we know at this hour. right now we're getting new details on how the white house struggled to manage the disclosure of emails setting up that bomb shell meeting. this as top senate investigators now want donald trump jr. to testify under oath possibly as soon as next week. they want to know more about his
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meeting with the russian lawyer last year that he went into expecting dirt on hillary clinton. he was told coming from the kremlin. tonight president trump is fuelling new questions about what he knew and when he knew it. speaking to reporters while flying to paris, he seemed to contradict his own public statements that he learned about the meeting with the russian lawyer only within the last few days, the president saying, quote, in fact, maybe it was mentioned at some point. we're digging on that this hour. another key question. did donald trump jr. speak on the phone with a pivotal figure behind the meeting? a wealthy and well connected russian popstar. we're going to talk to his attorney live this hour. >> we're covering all the developments with our team of correspondents and analysts. and the potential crisis for white house aids. we're joined by evan perez. how did the white house aides get gragged into all of this?
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-- get dragged into all of this? >> this all begins in june when
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this. and here you see a meeting with his son, his son-in-law and his campaign chairman directly with a high-powered lawyer who works directly with the kremlin. >> in the e-mail chain again, we don't know if it's complete, donald trump jr. wants to have a special counsel, mueller, because they've become part of the discussion of this meeting. we'll see if robert mueller decides he wants testimony from
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all of the aides who have been part of this strategy to respond. >> they'll be treated as witnesses. >> yes. >> a growing witness list, no question. is the white house once again changing its story on a key detail of the russia investigation? this time on when the president knew about donald trump jr.'s meeting with a russian lawyer. interviewed by fox on monday, he said unequivocally, he did not tell his father about the meeting. >> a lot of people are going to wanted to know this about your father. did you tell your father anything about this? >> it was such a nothing. there was nothing to tell. i wouldn't have even remembered it. it was literally a wasted 20 minutes, which is a shame. >> yesterday the president himself said he learned about the meeting for the first time in the last few days, saying, quote, no, that i didn't know until a couple of day ago when i heard about this. but the president somewhat cryptically raised the possibility that he learned about this not a couple of days
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ago, but at some specified earlier date. quote, in fact, maybe it was mentioned at some point. so to repeat the phrase, what did the president know and when did he know it? >> gloria, you've been speaking with sources with knowledge of the investigation. what are they telling you about the actual timeline? >> the key here is this june 21 date. this was when jared kushner and his attorney going through document review, as they would before they went back and spoke with the fbi as part of his security clearance process, discovered this e-mail chain. and that is a key date. so we look back to june 21 and the question i think that all of us have is did jared kushner at some point tell graph to the president in any way, shape, or
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form, that there was a problem on the horizon? "the new york times" has reported that he did in a kind of obtuse way. or was this lawyer to lawyer conversations? or did he talk to don jr. about this? did don jr. talk to the president about this? and so the president kind of changing his story a little bit here is quite interesting. >> and not the first time we've heard differing stories from the white house on key details. you're reporting that trump's lawyers have known about this e-mail for more than three weeks. is it credible to you that in light of the closeness of that relationship that the lawyers would not let the president know? >> that is an excellent question. june 21st is the date that jared kushner amends his security clearance form and then june 23rd, two days later, he's re-interviewed by the fbi. fbi agents show up for a second time to question kushner about this. now, that same week kushner's
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lawyers inform the president's lawyers, marc kasowitz, the chief lawyer in the russia investigation, and alan gartin, the chief lawyer for the trump organization. so you have this question sitting at the table. did the top lawyers for the president have this explosive information and not inform their client? you could argue that they had -- some have argued, and i quote richard painter, former ethics lawyer for the bush white house, saying they had an ethical obligation to inform their client about relevant information to this investigation and it's possible they were trying to protect him. but it raises questions about the twice statements. that he only learned about this in the last couple of days. >> we also know real quick that jared kushner told his own lawyers that he planned to sit the president down, show him the document.
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go through it with him because he felt he needed to explain this, he owed this to the president. >> but that didn't happen. >> we don't know whether it did, because the president is saying that he didn't learn about it until -- >> and there was another person in that meeting. paul manafort, who also is supposed to testify before congressional investigators. what did his lawyers know? what has he told congressional investigators? and have his lawyers spoken with jared kushner's lawyers? because in may he told congress about this meeting. and i want to ask you so clearly people within president trump's inner circle knew about this. and it seems as though it wasn't immediately brought to his attention. tell me more, gloria, about the dynamic between president trump, donald trump, his son. >> donald trump jr.'s office is below the president's in trump tower. and the family is quite close. don junior and the president
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have not always been close. it was very difficult for don junior when the president and ivana trump were divorced. he did not speak to his father for a period of time. they have since grown very close. they are business partners. don junior's been involved in every part of the president's businesses. and so you have to ask the question -- and the children in this family want to please donald trump and that's always the way it's worked. so you have to ask the question when he got this e-mail from somebody that is very well known to donald trump from a family that he's done business with and done the miss universe pageant with, et cetera, you have to ask yourself the question, would he not have told his father about it? >> eric trump even said earlier this week, we're a very close family and we're under attack, we stick together. describe that relationship. you've been talking to the lawyers a lot. i mean, this goes back to the
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way donald trump ran his businesses. it's a family affair. he has long-term relationships with some of his lawyers as well. hard to imagine information wasn't changing hands in that arrangement. >> right, exactly. ask we're told that a lot of this strategy was happening behind the scenes. certainly after the fbi -- it turns out cnn made a phone call. i made a fong call to jared kushner's lawyers on the 26th, in which i informed them that i was aware of the adjustment to the sf-86 form. so what happens behind the scenes is a lot of strot jazzing about exactly how to deal with this. because they know the day is coming about how to exactly manage this news. and the instinct that seems to kick in is not to disclose, despite the advice of other people of let's get this house, rip the bandaid off. instead what their instinct was to partially tell the story and tell it falsely. their first statement was false.
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>> that led to immediate changes. thafs -- that was the saturday statement. and the next day there was another story. >> and this has been the problem for jared kushner all along is the disclosures that he's made not just on the forms, but to members of congress have not been complete. this is what mark warner, the top democrat raised today. i asked directly what is happening with jared kushner right now? kushner himself offered to come before the panel in march. we're in july and there's no sign of him coming. and one reason why is because of them going back and forth over records and there's a new request out from earlier this week from the senate intelligence committee for mr. kushner to lay out exactly what happened here, because, as mark warner said, there were at least three meetings with kushner and russian officials that were not included in some of those forms that he provided.
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>> and another big request from sandra grassley asking for don junior to testify on capitol hill. i spoke to his attorney tonight who said he's considering this request, but this would be a significant deal for the president's son to be testifying under oath as part of this russia probe. >> and significant too because this is a republican chairman of a key committee that wants to bring donald trump jr. before him. you've heard democrat after democrat say they want him to testify. some republicans have said that too. but having a chairman that has the power to bring him forward, chuck grassley, making that decision today, very significant. that's why he's sending this letter formally inviting him. sounds like they'll get some cooperation. they're not ruling out the prospects of issuing subpoenas and the question is if paul manafort comes before the judiciary committee. grassley wants manafort to come before his committee. the question is, if that's going to step on bob mueller's investigation here. >> the white house has known
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since january that the house and the senate intelligence committees were going to be investigating this matter, including any links to the russian government by any political campaign. so they were on notice that this is something that was going to be getting a lot of scrutiny. they were going to have to be testifying, providing documents. any other white house in which there were people with some experience handling scandals in the past would have known the first thing you do is an internal review. you collect every e-mail, every document, every memo, assemble it. try to get some assessment of what your exposure is, and then you make decisions about how you're going to deal with it. it's not clear -- we know that simply wasn't done in this case. >> in fact the instinct throughout has been exactly the opposite. and we see a little microcosm of that just this weekend. you start -- you get the team on
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a saturday as you're reporting tonight has shown and they were looking to obscure, right? and then that backed them into a corner because they had to correct and correct again. >> and then there's also preparing to say hey, i want to make sure, see what we're dealing with here, to make sure we're prepared for any scenarios. >> exactly. but i think it flows from the top down. i fng you have a president of the united states who says, we have to get all of this out, we have to do everything we can, we have to comb through every record. we have to make sure that nobody here colluded in any way, shape, or form with the russians. if the president is saying that, then the rest follows. >> i have to say this prospect of the president's son going before as soon as next week under oath -- this is different. you can obscure in public statements but once you're in front of the committee, that's under oath. as we know investigators are looking into the possibilities of other meetings and what the content of those meetings were.
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if he's not forthcoming on those, this sets up true legal jeopardy. >> absolutely. and it gets also back to the initial point of what did the president know. you can almost -- i can guarantee you a question that he is going to be asked, if he does agree to testify, either in a public session or a closed session, is, did you tell your father about this meeting? and if he says something different than what he said publicly, that would look bad politically, but if he lies to congress, that's legal problems. >> it's going to be of many moments in a string of incredible moments. hold your thoughts. still ahead, new questions about the russians mentioned in donald trump jr.'s e-mails. >> we'll be joined by a u.s. law maker who wants more information about a case involving the
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president's son and other top members of the team. we'll be right back.
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%-pf being dragged into the special counsel investigation. >> they may be under scrutiny for what they may know about donald trump jr.'s meeting with a russian lawyer and for their role in crafting the changing explanations of what went on. joining us, new york democratic congressman, a member of the judiciary committee. thank you for coming on. >> a pleasure. i want to start with what did president trump know and when. because he told reuters yesterday he only learned a couple of days ago but today it sounds like he's leaving that window open.
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maybe it was mentioned at some point. indicating that perhaps he knew about this meeting earlier. what's your take? >> first of all you can't believe anything he says because he's a serial liar. his story will change three times. it's already changed once. second of all, on june 3rd, you had this e-mail chain in which donald trump jr. and manafort and jared kushner all get these e-mails and they participate in the chain, promising that the russian government is going to give information, dirt on hillary clinton. the next day, the president makes a speech saying that next week i'm going to give a speech with all sorts of negative stuff, all sorts of dirt on hillary clinton. a few days after that on the 9th of june, they have the meeting. the material doesn't turn up. miss veselnitskaya talks about repealing the magnitsky act --
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>> she's the russian lawyer? >> the russian lawyer. -- and he doesn't, in fact, make a speech with dirt on hillary, but the wikileaks start coming out a week later. there's circumstantial evidence that he was told immediately about the fact that they expected shortly, a lot of dirt on hillary from the russian government, and he then said, i'm going to have a speech with a lot of information. >> and we should point out again his son did not tell his father about this at the time. yahoo news is reporting tonight that president trump's lawyers found out about this meeting more than a few weeks ago, when it was found in the e-mail exchange. and at that point they told jared kushner's legal team. but do you think it's possible they wouldn't have told him at that point? >> no. it's perfectly plausible the way the white house seems to operate that they didn't tell the legal teams. but given the timeline i just said and given the fact if you're the president's son and
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son-in-law and campaign manager, and you get told that the russian government is a, operating a russian government operation to help your election and is going to give you information on hillary clinton, you probably tell the candidate. >> what's your response to the president's repeated defense by saying listen it's campaign. anybody would take that meeting. >> anybody would not take that meeting. you don't meet with a agent of a foreign hostile power hoping they will intervene in the american election. in fact, that very e-mail chain is probably criminal solicitation of illegal russian interference in the election and unkind contribution of -- in-kind contribution of something valuable. and opposition research that can only be gotten by theft, russian spying. now, the best case scenario is that they didn't tell the
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president, he didn't know it, and they got no information at that point, and r that simply means that manafort and kushner and donald trump were probably involved in a crime. the worst case scenario, you have to look at more timeline. remember the lawyer they met with, miss veselnitskaya, i can never pronounce it -- had to delay the meeting for an hour because she was engaged in an american courtroom. what was she doing in an american courtroom? she was involved in the case where the justice department and the person of u.s. attorney preet bharara was suing some russian oligarchs for $230 million for laundering money through manhattan real estate. it was for revealing this theft that sergei magnitsky had been murdered, and congress in retaliation had passed the magnitsky act, imposing
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sanctions on certain people who were involved in that. and ms. veselnitskaya is -- >> let's hit the pause button for a second. because this is a lot to digest. but bottom line this is a case involving the russian attorney. are you suggesting the department of justice somehow interferes? >> yes. >> with cause? >> do you have any proof of that? >> no. >> what then happens, preet bharara, the u.s. attorney who is prosecuting the case, is suddenly fired. in may, the case is settled for $6 million. causing miss vezselnitskaya to o back, saying this was a gift from the united states. >> and to be clear, i spoke with a law enforcement official. he made it clear the portion involving new york was just a fraction of the $230 million and the other side actually came to the government and wanted to settle it. that the government wanted to go to trial and the government was asking for 10 million and settled for 6 million.
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>> i don't know any of a that. i'm saying a worst case scenario this was part of a quid pro quo. you give us the information, we'll settle this case, we'll do other things. we'll go easy on the sanctions. on the magnitsky act or on other sanctions. this is what we have to investigate. >> and you've written your letters? >> yes. there's a lot of suggestive things here, but we don't know these to be fact, but they're highly suggestive and we have to investigate this. and we've written a whole series of very specific questions to the justice department. did the justice department involve itself? did the trump campaign or the trump presidency get involved in this at all? maybe not, but we have to investigate. >> congressman, thanks so much for joining us. >> appreciate it. a close reading of the e-mail donald trump jr. made public raises a very intriguing question. >> was there also a phone call about the information the russians wanted to pass on to the trump team? we'll be back. you know what's awesome?
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tonight president trump is downplaying the meeting between his son, along with other campaign officials, and a russian lawyer. lawmakers on both sides are taking it very seriously. senator chuck grassley said his committee is sending a bipartisan letter to donald trump jr. requesting that he testify before the judiciary committee. lawmakers want to know about his connections to the wealthy russian family who were allegedly behind the meeting and whether a phone call ever took place between don junior and agalara before the meeting as the e-mails might suggest. during the exchange, agalara publicist said, let me know when you are free to talk about this hillary info. don junior responds, could we speak now? let me track him down in moscow, what number he could call. don junior replies, he can call his cell. goldstone replies, he's on stage in moscow but should be off within 20 minutes, so i'm sure
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can call. that was june 6th. nearly an hour later, don junior replies, rob, thanks for the help, raising the question of whether a phone call might have taken place during that time. 24 hours later, goldstone sent another meeting saying, they asked that i schedule a meeting, you and the russian government, attorney, i believe you are aware of the meeting. the attorney for donald junior told cnn that his client has no recollection of a phone call. >> that attorney is scott valver and he joins us live tonight from new york. he represents two of the men in donald trump's e-mails. thank you very much for taking the time. >> my pleasure. >> did your client aguilara speak to don jr. over the phone before or after the meeting with the russian lawyer? >> at some point before the meeting. he has no recollection of any
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conversation by telephone or otherwise in this time frame with donald trump jr. either. he doesn't believe it happened. >> so when you say months before, was this during the campaign he spoke to him? >> no. he has no specific recollection of any conversations on this topic. he certainly spoke to donald trump jr. over the course of time during the couple of years before this time frame in which they had known each other. >> so they did have a phone relationship? >> they had spoken on the phone at different points in time. >> do you know how many times that happened during the presidential campaign? >> i don't know. >> so they did have a phone relationship. >> and do you know how many times during the presidential campaign this happened? >> no. again, nobody has any recollection of conversations during that time frame. >> give us a better sense of the russian lawyer, who goldstone called a russian government lawyer.
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>> let me address that and put this in a little bit of context if i can. the story here, the theory is that the russian government was in possession of some highly confidential super secret, devastating information about hillary clinton that would affect the outcome of the election and change the future of the free world. and they debated, how should we convey that to the trump campaign? and someone said, let's get rob goldstone, a music publicist, to convey the message. and let's get as many people as possible involved in this conversation and let's do it by e-mail. it just makes no sense. >> to be fair goldstone, yes, set up the meeting but the lawyer is a very well connected lawyer with an effort, a history of challenging u.s. sanctions against russians accused of human rights abuses, et cetera, the magnitsky act.
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so these are big issues and she was at the center of fighting those issues. she didn't just come out of nowhere. >> well, it is true she has been a vocal opponent to the magnitsky act. that's a fact. it's not the case as far as we understand, that she works for or was associated with the russian government in any capacity. she's a moscow-based -- >> what do you base your certainty on, that she had no association with the kremlin? >> well, what i believe i said and what i meant is that we had no understanding or reason to believe that she has an association with the kremlin. she's known as a private real estate lawyer in moscow, who over the course of time has been engaged in some transactions for mr. agillara's business activities. there's no evidence anywhere from anybody that she has any association with the russian government. as far as i know, it's made up. if somebody has a basis, i would love to see it, because i
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haven't seen it yet. >> did your clients have any information, were they told by anyone that the russian government was in a campaign to aid the trump campaign or meddle in the u.s. election, and even if they weren't aware of it, did they ever direct rob goldstone to say that in the e-mail to don junior? >> the answer to the first question is absolutely, unequivocally no. neither mr. aguilara nor his son had any understanding by the russian government to try to be involved in the u.s. campaign, that's one. and two, no, it's not the case that either of my clients had any involvement in some of the preposterous things that mr. goldstone said in the e-mails that you just showed on the air a minute ago. >> do either of your clients have any ties to mr. putin?
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>> no, other than the fact he's the president of their country and mr. aguilar received a high level award. >> not an insignificant high level award. it's people who mr. putin considers important people. >> i'm saying it's the case that mr. aguilara is an important person in the russian federation. he's a very successful businessman. he's involved in lots of activities which have put him in high prominence in the russian federation. he doesn't have a personal relationship with putin any more than any other powerful person in any country has with their leadership. >> let's me circle back. months before this meeting, there was a phone conversation between your client and don junior. speaking to the attorney for don junior said they're going through the phone logs to make sure there weren't any other conversations. have you done the same? and i want to circle back to whether or not there were any conversations after that meeting as well. you said there weren't any in that time frame of the e-mail exchange, but anything after? >> we have no reason to believe
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there were any after or before in this time frame. we are doing the same analysis. we're trying to look back at information to determine whether there was any phone calls, but this was a year ago and there is no recollection of any phone calls having taken place on this topic. >> last question for you. the president's nominee for fbi director said, if a person offered information from a foreign government as sort of research, as this is being dubbed, that that person should seek legal counsel. what kind of counsel would you give your client? >> my client has no need for counsel because they have no involvement in these issues other than setting up a meeting. >> but just generally, what kind of counsel would you give your client generally? >> in what context? >> not the aguilara, but generally. >> i'm not in the mood to give free legal advice to the world. >> thank you very much for taking the time. next, more on this hour's breaking news. top white house aides now at risk of being dragged into the
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special counsel's investigation. we'll be back. they have passions to pursue. how do they avoid trips to the post office? stamps.com mail letters, ship packages, all the services of the post office right on your computer. get a 4 week trial, plus $100 in extras including postage and a digital scale. go to stamps.com/tv and never go to the post office again.
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i think from a practical
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standpoint, most people would have taken that meeting. it's called opposition research or research into your opponent. i've had many people, i've only been in politics for two years, but i've had many people call up, oh, gee, we have information on this factor or this person, or, frankly, hillary. that's very standard in politics. >> that was president trump today in paris defending his son's meeting with the russian lawyer in june of last year, promising incriminating information on hillary clinton. let's bring back our correspondents and analysts. a very glib argument saying it's just opposition research, happens in politics. this is not your typical opposition research when you were told it is sourced to the russian government and you were told it is part of a russian government effort to win. >> this is donald trump, this is how he won the election and this
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is what donald trump does. which is, he has a narrative that he has crafted, which is, this meeting was a nothing meeting, that anybody would have done this, and even though donald trump jr. himself said to sean hannity, i might have handled things a little bit differently, that is not the narrative you're hearing from the president. because that's not how donald trump works. what he is doing is sort of digging in and then he, of course, later on said, look, this lawyer was not a government lawyer. this lawyer was a -- just a lawyer and she got her visa as a result of something loretta lynch did and went down that path and this is what donald trump does. >> i mean there is this other small issue though of the laws and norms of the united states of america right here. and the fact is he made this glib argument the day after his own fbi director said
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unequivocally under questioning from a senator who apparently agreed with him, this is the sort of thing that you have to go directly to the fbi with. how aggressively are you hearing that argument made by republicans at least in private? >> public and private. most republicans i talk to it's a no-brainer to them. they say we're not going to accept a meeting with anyone who's tied to the kremlin, any foreign adversary and frankly because a lot of these republicans on the hill have a much tougher line on russia than the president of the united states does. jeff blake, republican senator from arizona up for reelection next year. i caught up with him. i said, what about this, the president says it's common practice, anyone would do this. he said, not me, i wouldn't do this. maybe it's easy to say to a reporter, but when you ask virtually anybody on the hill, they'll say they've never taken a meeting such as this one.
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>> and who would say they would? >> right. >> you may have heard we interviewed congressman and he raised the speech donald trump gave just two days before this meeting. >> i am going to give a major speech on probably monday of next week and we're going to be discussing all of the things that have taken place with the clintons. i think you're going to find it very informative and very, very interesting. >> and to be clear this is four hours after the meeting was set june 9th. but it certainly raises some questions. >> it absolutely raises questions of what the president was informed of and whether he knew about this meeting. again, this is going to start to come out, because they've exposed themselves a little bit here, whereby the investigators might be able to ask people around him. and keep in mind, even though the president seems to be digging in, and trying to arrive at a new story that they'll try
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to stick to there are cracks forming behind the scenes. there are people pointing fingers because they're very unhappy about how this thing was done and they do not want to go down with the ship. so you're going to see -- what we're going to see is those cracks, whether they can repair them, whether those people start jumping ship, whether the people who quit might then go to the investigationors and say what they know was happening behind the scenes and that is what the white house should be very, very worried about. >> what are you learning, michael? >> first of all that was a fascinating interview with the lawyer for the aguilars. but his responses were incomplete, to say the least about the relationship between his clients and the trump family. i actually had the occasion to spend two hours interviewing rob goldstone back in march before anybody had any idea he was going to become a central figure in this investigation. because i knew he had been with donald trump in moscow during the miss universe pageant and
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could give an eyewitness account of what took place there. and he was quite affable and had quite a bit to say about the aguilar ofs. most significantly, there was a lot more to that miss universe trip than was publicly understood at the time, and even in the years afterward. s what's significant is that trump and the aguilar afs signed a business deal, a formal letter of intent to build a trump tower in moscow. donald trump jr., according to goldstone was put in charge of that project. bling it to fruition. -- bringing it to fruition. ivanka trump flew to moscow in february 2014 and scouted sites for the property of trump tower with emin aguilar of, and
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there's photographic evidence on the facebook page of ivanka and emin in moscow at the time goldstone told me it was. it is true this ultimately didn't happen. emin aguilar af said it was because trump decided to run for president. in fact, trump properties organization went forward -- projects went forward around the world. what really happened according to goldstone's account was in 20s 14 russia annexes crimea in ukraine, and the u.s. imposes sanctions. and the project is no longer economically feasible. so if nothing else, when we learn as we have, that in the early weeks of the trump organization -- of the trump administration, they were looking to lift sanctions on russia, you have to wonder if the fact that sanctions torpedoed his long cherished project in moscow, may have been
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a factor in -- >> you've opened a whole host of cans of worms there. our correspondents look ahead. >> whoot next in the russia meddling investigation and for the trump white house.
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top white house aides now at risk of being dragged into the special counsel investigation. >> they've been exposed to scrutiny for what they may have been known about donald trump jr.'s meeting with the russian lawyer and for their role in crafting the early and incomplete and changing explanations of what went on. our correspondents and analysts are back to look ahead to where the story goes from here. >> rob goldstone's name is at the center of this e-mail, setting up this key meeting here. likely to be called to testify? >> i think so. mark warner has said he wants the senate intelligence committee to bring forward and question anybody who was involved in setting up the meeting. i think the problem, or the thing to look for is there are a number of document requests that are out for people like jared kushner, security clearance information, letters that came from the senate judiciary committee, deadlines at the white house, and the fbi have not yet met to provide that information. soon enough, they're going to face subpoenas if they do not turn over that information.
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that could be key to watch in the coming days. >> this testimony is under oath, right? >> under oath. very significant. we interviewed the attorney for the agalarovs. he said tonight for the first time that there was a phone call between emin agalarov and don junior before that meeting at trump tower. >> that seems significant to me, in the sense that we know there have been some conversations before this meeting. there's reference, i think, in the e-mails, that there might have been a phone call. we didn't really know whether or not it occurred. that's the first instance anybody's confirming that there might have been such a conversation. the question is, what happened in that conversation, was this just a continuation of previous business discussions, obviously they seemed to have known each other before that. but i think investigators are going to want to know a lot more about what happened in the communications. i think the focus on this, of this discovery of this meeting, and this -- and these e-mails i
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think will cause them to go back and look through everything they have, communications. there's a lot of stuff stored up that they can look back and see if they can put some of this together. >> michael, the trump world refrain had been for months, there is no evidence of collusion. is there now evidence at least? >> there's certainly evidence of discussions of collusion. where it went from there, you know, we just don't know. but i think it's -- by the way, i should say, emin agalarov, he's given a number of interviews over the past years in which he said he stayed in touch with president trump, even both he and his father congratulated him on his election in november. got a nice message back from the president. in fact, he even said, the president is somebody who remembers his friends. [ all speak at once ] >> now we're heading into the point where you're going to have
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a congressional committee and they're going to be calling the people they want who are obvious, and the question is going to be, bob mueller, the special counsel, where is there a conflict, and who's going to get immunity. we haven't heard from general flynn in a while. i'm curious about that. >> as we try to answer these questions, this russia cloud will continue to hang over the white house. thank you for joining us. >> the news continues on cnn right after this quick break.
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right now in paris, president trump is the guest of honor at the bastille day parade. we've learned that jared kushner planned to tell the president weeks ago about damaging emails. did he? and the new republican health care bill faces an old dilemma -- can mitch mcconnell find a way to appease all to get this bill passed? good morning, everyone, welcome to "early start" on this bastille day. i'm dave briggs -- [

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