Black and blue or white and gold? Yanny or Laurel? Chicken or the egg? These are questions as old as time itself — and depending on one’s perspective, have very different answers. But today’s Big Question has to do with a June 2016 meeting between Donald Trump, Jr., Jared Kushner, Paul Manafort, and a Kremlin-connected lawyer named Natalia Veselnitskaya — and the question, in this case, is: Russian Collusion or Meeting That Could Have Taken Place Via Email?
According to a series of 2,500 documents published today by the Senate judiciary committee, a Trump Organization attorney named Alan Futerfas asked a publicist for Veselnitskaya and her partners to help obscure the true nature of that infamous 2016 meeting. In an email to the publicist, Rob Goldstone, Futerfas drafted a statement he wished Goldstone would say to the press and added, “If you feel comfortable with this statement and are comfortable saying nothing more, at least for the time being, that would be our preference.”
Additionally, incoming White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci told the publicist that he needed to remain “consistent and united” with the U.S. in the face of public pressure about the meeting. Uh, that’s the kind of thing you say when your senior prank has gone horribly wrong and injured someone. Or when you’ve colluded with an enemy foreign power to elect a brain-dead manatee.
But the records also show that Trump, Jr.’s team was left “frustrated and angry” when their meeting with the Russians did not produce enough dirt on Clinton, thus indicating that this ball of collusion could have taken place via email.
The best part of all of this is the revelation that Goldstone, the publicist who set up this failed, corrupt, internationally criticized and high-powered collusion convention, is a music publicist. No wonder the meeting reportedly went off the rails and only covered topics like economic sanctions and a ban on Americans adopting Russian children. Trump thought he was meeting with the members of Pussy Riot.