Jared Kushner agrees to appear before House Intelligence Committee
Next week Kushner meets with both intelligence committees investigating Russia.
— -- White House senior adviser Jared Kushner has agreed to appear in a closed session before the House Intelligence Committee as part of its investigation into Russian election meddling on Tuesday, July 25, ABC News has learned.
This will be the second of two interviews Kushner has scheduled with congressional investigators next week. As ABC News first reported, the president’s son-in-law is also scheduled to appear on Monday before the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Kushner's lawyer Abbe Lowell confirmed the session in a statement to ABC News saying that Kushner "has been voluntarily cooperating with the house committee to provide whatever information he has on the investigations to Congress" and confirmed the meeting is scheduled for Tuesday. "He will continue this cooperation and appreciates the opportunity to assist in putting this matter to rest," Lowell added.
Kushner will likely face questions about his meetings with Russian officials during the transition and about his failure to initially disclose on his security clearance application forms, as required by law.
While Kushner will be the first person in the president's inner circle to be questioned before Congress on the Russia investigation, it won't stop there.
The president's son, Donald Trump Jr. and his former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, have agreed to provide documents and sit for closed-door interviews with the Senate Judiciary Committee, after the panel initially invited them to testify at a public hearing next Wednesday.
In an interview with ABC News Thursday, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., the committee’s top Democrat, said his panel also hopes to hear from Manafort and Trump Jr. about the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting -- and are prepared to issue subpoenas if necessary. “We invite them to appear voluntarily. If they refuse, then we do issue subpoenas, but it’s our hope that they will voluntarily comply,” he said.
It was just over a week ago that reports surfaced that Kushner took part in another meeting connected to Russia, arranged in part by his brother-in-law Trump Jr.
Trump Jr. agreed to meet with Russian attorney Natalia Veselnitskaya with the expectation of receiving incriminating information about then-Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton as part of a Russian government effort to help his father's campaign, according to emails Trump Jr. publicly released on Twitter. Those emails were forwarded by Trump Jr. to Kushner and Manafort, who also attended the June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower.
Trump Jr. stated during an interview with Fox News that Kushner left that meeting about 10 minutes after it started. Additionally, sources with knowledge of the meeting told ABC News that Kushner did not read to the bottom of the four-page email chain that mentioned the pretext for the meeting.
The email chain shows a detailed conversation between Trump Jr. and Rob Goldstone, a music producer and acquaintance of Trump Jr. who had initiated the contact and helped arrange the meeting. Goldstone tells Trump Jr. in the emails, among other things, that he could provide "official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia.”
Trump Jr. responded to the request for a meeting positively, saying to Goldstone, “if it’s what you say I love it.”
Members of the Senate Intelligence Committee have said they plan to call both Trump Jr. and Manafort as well. Both Trump Jr. and Manafort have said they will cooperate.
All contacts between the Trump campaign and Russian officials have come under intensified scrutiny following repeated denials from the Trump administration that there were no undisclosed meetings with Russians -- statements that have since been proven false.
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