tv CNN Newsroom With John Berman and Poppy Harlow CNN July 24, 2017 7:00am-8:00am PDT
good morning, everyone. i'm john berman. >> i'm poppy harlow on the hill, capitol hill that is and on the hot seat. moments ago, senior adviser to the president, jared kushner arrived. he is behind closed doors with senate investigators. they want to know about the meetings he had with russians and russian officials as they investigate the russian meddling in the 2016 investigation. before sitting down with investigators, he offered a lengthy defense, 11 pages, to be exact saying he did not collude and did nothing wrong. he blamed it on a political newcomer. >> the down play of the meeting set up by donald trump jr. and a host of others with connections to russia. that meeting set up to provide dirt from the russian government so said the e-mail on hillary clinton. jared kushner said from his
perspective, it was so meaningless, i e-mailed an assistant from the meeting after i had been in there and wrote can you call me on my cell, need excuse to get out. we are going to have more on the 11-page statement. first, i want to go to manu raju. >> we tried to ask him a question. he walked by reporters, we asked him specifically, i did, if he had concerns that he regretted the trump tower meeting, being there with donald trump jr. and meetings where jr. was promised dirt on the campaign. he smiled, walked by and did not answer statements, but did go into the meeting room. it is a secure meeting room with senate intelligence committee staff. we are expecting four to six staff to be there, not the entire committee. we are not expecting members of
the senate intelligence committee and not expecting jared kushner to go under oath. typically, they are not under oath, but you have to be truthful in speaking to congress. jared kushner's team certainly on the offensive to make sure they believe mr. kushner did nothing wrong and he is willing to see the transcript of the interview be public should the committee decide to do that as well as saying he would be willing to go under oath as well. this comes as jared kushner's father-in-law, donald trump, has russia on his mind. earlier today, on twitter, going after the top democrat on the house intelligence xhcommittee, someone who will interview kushner calling him sleazy. a totally bias congressman looking into russia, spending his time on television, pushing
the dem laws. in a separate tweet, referred to the attorney general as the beleaguered attorney general. clearly, this is on the president's mind. jared kushner and his team want to say there's nothing to the meetings he had during the campaign and the transition trying to alleviate concerns it members of congress had. will he be able to answer those questions? calls to come back here and he testified publicly saying he is willing to see the interview public. >> manu raju on the hill. thank you. let's talk about the 11-page statement from kushner. pamela brown is with us. this is, by far, the most detail we have gotten from jared kushner. he doesn't do any interviews now lays out what he calls the full story. >> reporter: this is the first time he shared his story publicly saying in these 11
pages, he has nothing to hide and stating he did not collude nor know of anyone else in the campaign who colluded with any foreign government. he said i had no improper contacts, have not relied on russian funds in the private sector. kushner painted o picture of a fast pasted campaign and decisions had to be made on the fly. he said i share this information because these actions should be viewed but the lens of a fast-paced campaign with thousands of meetings and interactions. some were impactful and memorable and many were not. the way he laid out the interactions he had with russians, he viewed those an insignificant. though, it is worth mentioning two of the meetings, back in december with kislyak and the other with the head of the bank was after the u.s. intelligence community publicly concluded russia meddled in the u.s.
election and it's worth note thag russia's election meddling, interference was not mentioned at all in the 11-page statement. >> pamela brown in washington. thank you so much. joining us to discuss, doug heigh and simone sanders, michael zelden and dana bash, gloria as well. michael, you are the lawyer for us right now. looking at this 11-page document, carefully crafted by his team of lawyers. what jumps out to you? >> how well prepared he is for the meeting and how capable his legal team is. this is a compelling assault, if you will, on the accusations made against him, whether it is available, depending on how he answers the question going
forward and how broad he wants the investigation to be. as a first volley from his side as we have seen in public domain, this is a good start for him. >> dana, he could have defended himself every step of the way with this, right? he chose not to. he chose to put it all in one and give it to the staffers going into the meeting. strategy wise, what does that tell you? >> we'll see at the end of the day. legally, what his team argues and a source close to him argues is that this was the strategy they decided to go with to, as you said, put it all in one place and present his side of the story to the people who are investigating the senate intelligence community. and of course the house tomorrow. i'm assuming the special council, when they are ready. at a certain point, you have to ask what is in the best interest of the president you are serving, who happens to be his father-in-law. you know, he has been such a
central figure in story after story after story, which i may say, are not fake news because he is, you know, cooperating and confirming a lot of meetings that he said he had. he tried to explain it wasn't nefarious, as, you know, people might have thought. he could have corrected the questions or give answers to the questions about the content of these meetings months ago and it could have potentially let his father-in-law focus more on the issues and on the agenda and maybe more importantly, republicans on capitol hill who have gotten sucked into this vortex of russia. >> simone sanders, one last question of jared kushner before we move to breaking news from the president's mouth. you worked on a campaign. jared kushner, a defense is i got more than 200 e-mails every day. i didn't get a chance to sit
through all of them. an e-mail with don jr. and the army of people connected to russia, i didn't read to the bottom of it. is that a plausible explanation based on your campaign experience? >> it's not. whether you are a senior adviser, press secretary communications director ar political director, it is your job to read those e-mails. i find hard to believe he did not scroll to the bottom to find out what was going on. on the other hand, a lot of the trump advisers and trump people in the white house said we are new at this, we haven't done this before. they have never worked campaigns, so they don't understand campaign protocol. it's never acceptable to say i didn't read the e-mail. you have to read the e-mail. >> i am guilty of responding. people write back and say, did you read the chain. >> scroll down. >> i'm not running a presidential campaign. i'm just not reading berman's e-mails. let me ask about another attack on the president on his own
attorney general, jeff sessions. here is what he wrote in a statement. why aren't the committees, investigators and beleaguered ag looking into crooked hillary's crimes and russia relations? he calls sessions beleaguered and says he is not doing his job, gloria. >> right. of course, this is the president who has made him feel beleaguered. this is a president who told "the new york times" that he wouldn't have hired him in the first place if he had known he was going to recuse himself in the russian investigation. i think this is a clear shot across the bow. i think the president was being sarcastic here. if i was to guess, this is a way he's pushing jeff sessions to resign. jeff sessions said he was going to stay, but would leave if it was no longer appropriate. we may be reaching that point.
i think this is not a president who keeps -- who keeps his feelings private and i think this is a clear indication of how he feels about his one time very, very good friend, jeff sessions, who, by the way, was the first republican senator to -- to endorse donald trump. that endorsement was really important to him. so, i think there is a rift in their relationship that probably cannot be repaired at this point. >> you know, the president is taunting the attorney general. i mean he brought this up in his now public interview with "the new york times" and this morning with this statement. the question is, how much more can a guy like jeff sessions take and what are you hearing inside, you know, those oak paneled rooms that you hang out in in washington, d.c.? what are republicans saying? friends of jeff sessions? >> around the round table, what we talk about is, you know, what
i have heard a lot is, i have talked to several folks at d.o.j. from "the washington post" story, they don't just deny it. they deny it in language i can't repeat here, not even calling it fake news, but worse than that. the president is teeing off on that and using it against jeff sessions. that is making them hunker down more. the more you attack him, he is more willing to stay and do his job. it should be a good thing, but given the language we heard from the president, it may backfire on the president. >> dana, can i get your take on the strategy here from the white house doubling down, tripling down on the russia thing as a hoax, this is a witch hunt, et cetera? the cnn poll we did showed fewer people think the russia thing is a big deal. you have 27% of americans very concerned about it and it has fallen, the number of americans concerned about the president
and his team's relationship, whatever it is with russia has fallen from 55% concerned in march, 49% now. is there indication it is working? >> possibly. the other thing is people might be numb to it. >> okay. >> and more focused on some of the issues that we are also covering and focused on like what is going to happen with health care, which is a giant, open question. a lot rides on what's going to happen in the senate this week or not happen in the senate this week. i think what you said about the white house calling it a witch hunt, i think we should also just kind of underscore it is pretty much one person in the white house, maybe one and a half that anthony scaramucci said he's not sure to jake tapper yesterday. one person who refuses to acknowledge that russia was involved. that is donald j. trump. every single one of his cabinet
members and advisers who spoke publicly have disagreed with him. >> including, up until the last few days, mike mpompeo. >> mike rogers, all of them. >> they knew it was russia that hacked into the election. take us back behind closed doors in this meeting that is going on right now. we are a few minutes into jared kushner answering questions from senate investigators right now. what avenues do you think they will pursue? where will they look for answers and what will they get? >> i think they want to explore each of the meetings he set out in his 11-page statement to drill down further and see whether his story, holds up. i don't mean a story in a made up fiction sense, but holds up to further scrutiny. they will want to -- the statement sets up opportunity
for them to pit kushner against donald jr., especially with the june 9th meeting. if kushner is believed, he said i don't scroll down, i don't know what it's about. that puts the meeting and the passing of documents and the like to donald jr. there's a rift set up between them legally. if i was a community member, i would want to flush that out. i would like, if i were a prosecutor, i would like two of the opposing witnesses at each other to gain information from one or the other. >> you know, he even went so far in the statement to say, it seemed to me he was trying to get out of a bad date. he e-mails his secretary and says, please call me so i can have an excuse to leave this. because he wanted to get out of the room. in his calendar, he said it just said don jr. and kushner, so
there was no notation about russia or hillary, but i would say presume his assistant put it in his calendar. he tried to downgrade any sense that this was a meeting of any importance or significance to him. >> but it struck me that he tried to get out of the meeting, not because he thought the content wasn't proper, but he thought don jr. was wasting his time. >> he really makes it seem as if he never knew what the meeting was about to begin with. that's an important assertion right there. he tried to get out of a meeting he didn't know what it was about to get out of a bad date, according to gloria. thanks. we appreciate it very much. >> thank you, we have a lot ahead. today, round one for jared kushner. tomorrow, in front of the house intelligence committee. we are speaking with someone who will question him who sit ons the committee, coming up. plus, the president with new
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right now, the president's senior adviser and son-in-law, jared kushner is behind closed doors meeting with senate intelligence staffers. tomorrow, he meets with the house committee. >> mike quigley joins us now. thank you for being with us. unlike the senate having the intel staffers doing the questioning today, you will be in that room. what do you want to ask him? >> well, he started to bring out these meetings that people want to know about, what happened in
the meeting, how many were there, why would you meet, allegedly the head of the b.e.b. bank in russia, a bank sanction sanctioned. why would you have a conversation with the ambassador about a back channel to communicate with the kremlin. many other questions. why was the first meeting set up with the russians and trump jr. and manafort? what was the topic of those discussions, unofficial, official? i mean, we are only allowed two hours tomorrow. this could go on for weeks. >> so, you bring up sebastian, the head of this russian, big russian bank. it's interesting because there's a dispute. the bank said previously that he met with kushner about business dealings. the white house and kushner said that's not the case. this is about -- it's always been part of the transition. there's an interesting divide
there. sergey, excuse me. are there things in the statement you believe that are still missing that leave you with more questions than answers? >> it's a change in policy, i guess. the length of this investigation, the trump people said first, fake news, denial, then grudgingly admit a meeting took place, but it wasn't about anything. they are finally under oath. we finally get to find out what happened if they are risking perjury. it's an interesting approach. i was a criminal defense attorney ten years. i never use naivety as an excuse. the russians in mt. pilot fooled me again. it doesn't seem to work. >> jared kushner is not the one saying fake news because he
doesn't give interviews or speak publicly. >> you raise questions that jared kushner seemed to try to answer in the 11-page document. he met with the banker because they asked his assistant to. why did you meet? it came at a speech that was set up. he does try to answer each one of those questions. you are not satisfied with the answers he gives in the 11-page statement? >> well, if anyone has been part of a deposition before, you know you are not going to answer a deposition with a written response. right? first, you are not under oath. second of all, you are not under the scrutiny of follow up questions and the ability to go into detail. i have no idea what to expect. i have no prejudgment of what he is going to say. the fact is, when i talk about naivety or changing narratives, it's part of the trump plan
overall. under the scrutiny of cross-examination and questioning deposition format, perhaps we can find out exactly what took place. >> switching gears to something that is very important for your party in elections moving forward. the democratic party and leadership adopted this better deal, sort of slogan and campaign, if you will, about your message going forward. this comes after a lot of polling shows the democrats didn't have a message they were standing on in the last election rather than anti-trump message. here is what chuck schumer said in a meeting this weekend. quote, when you lose to somebody who has 40% popularity, you don't blame other things, comey, russia, you blame yourself. frankly the president took that to his advantage, issue ud a statement this morning. is chuck schumer correct? >> i didn't hear that last part,
i'm sorry. >> is chuck schumer correct. when you lose to someone with 40% popularity, you don't blame comey and russia, you blame yourself, meaning the democratic party. >> i don't think you blame anybody for your losses. move forward and find out what you need to do. i'm on the intel committee. a lot of my time is dealt with finding out what took place here. as a democrat and someone who represents chicago, i'm an appropriateuater. my job is to drive resources back to chicago. i think the first message is we need a big infrastructure bill and rebuild the economy and create jobs in the meantime. more people take the train in chicago, the cta than ride amtrak in a year and they do it in a month. sure, i would love to talk about that message. obviously, we have been busy on that committee, focused on the measures at hand. >> congressman, we'll talk about that and what the better deal is, specifically, moving forward
and how it's different from hillary clinton's campaign or the president, barack obama. thank you for being with us. >> thank you. >> he didn't want to be a public figure, but right now, high profile meeting is under way with jared kushner and investigators. next, we speak with two reporters that covered jared extensively. (vo) my name is bryan. i'm proud to make dog chow in davenport, iowa. dog chow's been a part of my family's life for over 40 years. my grandfather made it and now i'm making it. as a micro-biologist i ensure that dog chow leads with high quality ingredients. theso when i need to book tant to mea hotel room,tion. i want someone that makes it easy. booking.com gets it.
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and you can only stream on two devices at once. this is fun, we're having fun. yeah, we are. no, you're not jimmy. don't let directv now limit your entertainment. xfinity gives you more to stream to more screens. happening now, jared kushner, behind closed doors answering questions from investigators from the senate intelligence committee. we have life pictures of the stakeout outside that room. jared kushner walked by. he went into the legal team and looking into allegations to collusion between the trump campaign and russia. >> before walking into this
private, behind closed doors meeting, he released a statement, a long, 11-page statement. part of it read, i am not a person who likes the spotlight. it is true. let's talk to people who covered him extensively. david, works as a political reporter when jared kushner rand the reporter. and writer for vanity fair that covers all things ivanka and jared. in a piece you wrote about them, they have perfect timing when it comes to avoiding the heat when the spotlight gets too bright. he can't escape it. he came out all smiles and can't answer reporter questions. what do you make of what to expect from him and the statement? >> what i found most striking in a statement was his continued assertion that he was so busy throughout the campaign, so
overwhelmed, such a political novice, he didn't know any of these things were wrong, he didn't have the time to read through e-mails even ones with the title russia, hillary clinton. this is a senior adviser to the president of the united states who has such a broad slate in the white house making gigantic decisions on anything from infrastructure to middle east piece to staffing decisions in the left wing. if he can't handle these things in a transition or campaign, how is he handling them in the white house? >> what experience did he have in mideast peace before taking on campaign work? it's a valid point. david, we saw jared kushner walking in looking relaxed. you know the public view of jared kushner is different than his behavior and demeanor and forcefulness behind closed doors. look, this is a guy who was pushing for the president to fire james comey.
>> he's someone as a behind the scenes, soft spoken, massager of donald trump and the presidency. he comes out as a hard headed new jersey real estate. he was birthed into a scandal. he had to rebuild a family name. here he is playing the scandal playbook itself out in washington. >> emily, you also have written in the first six months, kushner is less moderate in moderating. that is true. many thought he would be more, sort of the democrat, if you will, to bring his father more -- his father, the former democrat, to the center. what surprised you the most in the first six months for things he pushed for? >> what's interesting is there have been a number of sources who described him as a secure line that people in his circle, who he ran with before the campaign and the white house thought of him as someone who
would be a voice of reason, someone who would moderate the extreme things his father-in-law pushed on the campaign. as we talked, he was in full support of the president firing james comey. he was in support of the band that would ban muslim immigrants. these are things that are not necessarily moderate things that people would have expected him to support and full support behind the president. >> david, again, he is behind closed doors right now. how has his training, growing up in new jersey and new york real estate. how do you think that prepared him for this moment? how do you think he'll be? >> i don't think anything can prepare him for now. the stakes are getting high. this is serious stuff. we are behind closed doors with the senate, the house tomorrow. mueller is investigating. this is serious stuff. what we know about kushner is he is not giving an inch, at all. it's like the trump playbook.
i'm totally innocent. give not an inch as we approach. >> he's willing to cast blame on people who are close to him. he, pretty much said that don jr. was the one, reiterated john jr. was the one behind this. he brings up his assistant several times as someone who made the mistake in filing his security clearance early. so, if you take him at his word, this may be good defense for him, but shows he's willing to throw people under the bus. >> there's no we throughout the statement. there's a lot of i's. we asked dana bash about that earlier and she pointed out what was asked of him and what this is is his story, defense of him. do you take it as that or a growing divide because the son, don jr. and the son-in-law, jared kushner? >> it seems to be growing there. it was a heck of a statement that this was not my meeting. i merely got in and it was part
of. talk to my assistant because they know all about this and filled out the forms wrong. he's implicating other people here. they get tripped up on obstruction of justice or perjury or misleading. i wonder if that's the road we are heading down. >> fascinating to watch. thank you for being with us. appreciate your time on this. the president has a lot on his plate. he is attacking members of his own party for not doing enough to get his back. we think on the russia investigation, but also possibly on policy, on health care. will that help the president get the votes he wants? stay with us. you do all this research
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the president has been vocal on twitter, but today, we are going to hear from him, what he has to say about senate gop health care bill that remains on the brink. he's said to give a statement later today after he wrote this, republicans have a last chance to do the right thing on repeal and replace after years of talking and campaigning on it. cnn's mj lee joins us live from capitol hill. as it has president is trying to win votes from republicans, he is attacking republicans in some ways. where is the vote count as we sit here now? >> first of all, john and poppy, i realize i have said this before a couple times, but there may be a health care vote this week after weeks after delays and failed attempts. mitch mcconnell insisting there is going to be a vote this week on a motion to proceed. what is amazing is no one seems to know what it is the republicans are trying to vote on. this is because there have been
so many strategies coming from leadership. mitch mcconnell wanted to do a repeal and replace, but that didn't give enough votes. then they would repeal only and delay bill. that got a lot of concerns out of the senate republican conference. then president trump weighed in and insisted they could not do a repeal only, they have to do a repeal and replace at the same time. there's a lot of hesitation and questions among senate republicans about what, exactly, it is they are trying to vote on. regardless of what strategy they try to pursue t reality remains getting the 50 votes on the motion to proceed is fwoung to be difficult. remember, just on the repeal and replace strategy that mcconnell was pursuing, someone like sue collins was a no. rand paul was a no. he on the votes to vote on repeal only.
senator john mccain is out of the senate. he is in arizona getting treatment for his brain cancer diagnosis. a lot of problems and challenges remain for majority leader, mitch mcconnell. trump, we are going to hear from this afternoon. he has been vocal on twitter as well. he said last night, if republicans don't repeal and replace the disastrous obamacare, the replications are worse than that understand. i think they understand the repercussions and that is weighing heavily on them this week. john and poppy? >> indeed. thank you very much on capitol hill for us. maybe, maybe, maybe, there will be a vote this week. ahead for us, it is one of the most violent times in recent history in afghanistan, in the middle of all of it, 300 u.s. marines. we are going to take you inside.
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to address the worst violence in jerusalem in years between israelis and palestinians. >> a senior official tells cnn the white house is working with israelis and jordanians to ease the tensions. it started after security features were installed after two police officers were killed there. they have postponed an emergency meeting for more leaders to attend. a deadly taliban attack. a car bomb exploded. at least 29 were killed, dozens more injured. they say they were targeting a bus carrying afghan intelligence staff. >> the battle clearly rages in the longest u.s. war. the u.s. marines are still on the front lines there. joining us live from kabul, nick peyton walsh, you have had an up close encounter with all this. >> reporter: john,
interestingly, as the violence rages, i should point out the people killed in that bus explosion, the government said they were civilians. the violence rages here. the most volatile province. it's got 300 marines who went in to stop the whole place from falling to insurgency. they have made some progress. their experience, as we saw, represents the challenges the u.s. faces before the trump white house announced the new strategy for afghanistan. here is what we saw. here we are, again, but it's been going on so long. these guys have left, then come back. afghanistan and american marines. when does it end? a year ago, the taliban were at the gates of this city. now, it's not good, but it's
better because the marines, even though there's only 300 of them, brought huge fire power with them. afghan troops retook one. the marines on base and congratulate them and endorse. nothing lasts forever here, except may the war. the triumph soon fades. the rockets just hit, landing 20 meters from us outside. a total of three, indiscriminate. an 8-year-old boy wounded in the attack. president trump is now weighing his first for men like colonel reed whose birthday is september 11th is nothing new. with thousands of marines, so few now. >> around 300. those are the troops. >> reporter: now, they have to do it all over again. >> it's discouraging. a lot of blood on the ground. >> i can sense heaviness.
>> there is a definite feeling, sense of obligation to get this right because of those that have gone before us, for sure. >> reporter: how many friends have you lost here? >> i don't think i have bothered to count. too many. between here and iraq. >> reporter: some marines near the front where you may count the taliban's white flag. >> this is all taliban country, all of it. there's taliban that come through here on a daily basis. >> reporter: the marines aren't meant to fight them, the afghans are. there aren't as many here as there's supposed to be. listen to how the 45 marines double what's meant to be a 500 afghan unit. >> there's only 200 assigned right now. >> reporter: you mean that exit? >> that exit. of those 200, there's 100 of them that aren't here. >> reporter: some on operations
or patrol. this marine unit pulls back after a week. >> the marines are leaving but this is only supposed to be a short mission. they come and go and back again. each time hoping the afghan security forces they leave behind will be able to do their job, to hold the taliban back. with only 300 of them here, what has changed? question is, what really can president trump try that's new? they have tried more troops. they tried talking to taliban. that seems unlikely. the taliban feel like they are winning. maybe we'll see the same security forces train. the idea of peace in the long term seems far away. john? >> nick peyton walsh in kabul, the question, what would be different this time? jared kushner is behind closed doors as we speak answering questions from senate
investigators. no doubt, it will include the meeting set up by donald trump jr. and a lawyer. see what happens when cnn tries to talk with a man that set up the meeting. that's next. oss this house with water dripping from the ceiling. you never know when something like this will happen. so let the geico insurance agency help you with homeowners insurance and protect yourself from things like fire, theft, or in this case, water damage. cannonball! now if i had to guess, i'd say somewhere upstairs there's a broken pipe. let the geico insurance agency help you with homeowners insurance. call today to see how much you could save. her long day as anne. hair stylist starts with shoulder pain when...
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right now, senior white house adviser and the president's son-in-law, jared kushner is on capitol hill meeting with senate investigators. >> he is down playing the meeting he attended that was set up by donald trump jr. with a lawyer and several other people with russian connections. matthew chance caught up with the pop star whose family helped arrange that meeting. matthew joins us live from latvia where this gentleman is performing. you got a concert and confrontation? >> reporter: yeah, yeah. we got the whole package, that's
right. look, this is an incredibly important meeting because it's the strongest indication we have had that the trump campaign team may have been open to the possibility of colluding with, with, you know, russian officials. that's what donald trump jr. in the e-mails he released said he's prepared to do. remember, he said i love it when they said they had damaging information on hillary clinton. the pop star has refused to give a proper statement to give his accounts of why he set up the meeting. i came to latvia and tracked him down and put important questions to him. when did you arrange the meeting between donald trump jr. and the russian lawyer. >> come join me for the show tonight. >> we will, definitely. did they give your family information to pass on? >> talk to my lawyer. >> reporter: i did, he said you
wouldn't comment. >> so, i wouldn't comment. >> reporter: these are questions you are not going to be able to comment on at some point. >> i am here to perform and enjoy the show. you are not going to get a comment. am i clear, you are not going to get a comment? >>reporter: so, the pop star being adamant that he didn't want to elaborate on the answer he gave. but, i said to him, these are questions that are not going to go away. they are going to be raised again, of course, at this hearing with jared kushner as the committees later on, it's happening right now. this issue will, eventually, i expect be addressed. >> matthew chance, you got the sunglasses on and i would say persistence is not your weakness, my friend. >> that was awesome. come to the concert, i plan to. thank you for that reporting. >> thank you for joining us.
i'm poppy harlow. >> at this house with kate bolduan starts right now. hello, everyone i am kate bolduan. jared kushner, on the record. president trump's son-in-law and one of his most trusted advisers in the hot seat on capitol hill for the first time, facing questions from staff about his russia contacts. kushner's interview under way as we speak, behind closed doors, not under oath. beforehand, he released an 11-page statement detailing a lot of things, including four contacts with russians during the campaign and transition, denying he read the e-mail chain from donald trump jr. leading up to the meeting with the russian lawyer and denying collusion on his part a