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Senate Judiciary Witness: Trump loves listening to rap songs about himself

17 May 2018
Senate Judiciary Witness: Trump loves listening to rap songs about himself

"I don't know what would be deemed 'damaging, ' but I didn't hear anything that I would deem to be damaging", Goldstone said. The Trump Tower session was being sought by Agalarov's father, Aras, a prominent businessman with close ties to Vladimir Putin.

"Their efforts to hide the meeting and its true objective are consistent with a larger pattern of false statements about the Trump campaign's relationship with Russian Federation".

Negotiations for a face-to-face meeting began with a written request from Trump Tower to the Kremlin, included a personal call with Mr Putin's top spokesman and "went down to the wire", Mr Goldstone recalled.

Seventeen minutes after Goldstone sent his e-mail, Trump, Jr., replied: "Thanks Rob I appreciate that".

The 40-year-old son of the president told Congress he does not remember informing his father of the meeting before it was reported by The New York Times a year later.

On June 14, just days after the meeting, Goldstone wrote to Emin Agalarov and Ike Kaveladze, a California businessman who was born in Russian Federation.

A bit later in the day, when Goldstone e-mailed Trump, Jr. -whom he had dealt with in the past, when Emin performed at a Trump golf course-he kept to himself any concerns he may have had.

There are many new nuggets to take away from the Senate Judiciary Committee's transcripts, from Goldstone's assertion he thought he had a "smoking gun" on Clinton to the description of Kushner being "infuriated" as the meeting wore on. Politics, I knew nothing about.

"I also firmly believe that this effort is not over".

"He said, 'It doesn't matter".

Recent revelations show Manafort was so unimpressed with Veselnitskaya's presentation that he is said to have spent much of the meeting fidgeting with his phone, the Russian's lawyer's translator, Anatoli Samochornov, said.

Trump Jr. also told the committee that he never told his father about the meeting, and that he did not know if his father had any involvement with the initial statement made to The Times about the nature of the meeting. Seems we have some time and if it's what you say I love it especially later in the summer.

"As it later turned out", he continued, "my skepticism was justified".

Asked whether he felt like he had been "duped" into attending the meeting organized by Goldstone under "false pretenses" to grab his attention, Trump Jr. said, "I imagine there was an element of showmanship involved".

"If it is what you say", Donald Trump Jr. responded, in a previously disclosed e-mail that is now infamous, "then I love it".

Goldstone told the committee that the president's son-in-law, Kushner, also seemed annoyed that Veselnitskaya's spiel didn't contain an obvious "smoking gun". "You just have to get the meeting", Goldstone, a British citizen, testified.

Veselnitskaya began her presentation again, delivering it nearly word for word the way she did the first time, according to Goldstone, who told the Senate committee that this seemed to infuriate Kushner more.

Several significant questions remain unanswered about this meeting and the numerous other contacts between the Trump campaign and Russian associates.

In a document released only by the Committee Democrats, the group said "The Committee has obtained a number of documents that suggest the Kremlin used the National Rifle Association as a means of accessing and assisting Mr. Trump and his campaign".

Goldstone, who instigated the meeting, messaged with key participants, Emin Agalarov, whom he had worked with on Trump's Miss Universe pageant, and Kaveladze about how to respond to the media furor.

The invitation came in July 2015, in an email from Goldstone to Graff, Trump's executive assistant, asking whether Trump would be able to attend Aras Aragalov's 60th birthday party.

In them, a clearer portrait of Aras Agalarov emerges as someone who persistently attempts to connect the Russian attorney with the Trump campaign, both before and after the election, to talk about the impact on worldwide adoptions of USA sanctions against Russia. In which he agreed to hold meeting, Natalia Veselnitskaya was presented as a "Russian government attorney" who, as "part of Russia's support and her government to Trump", had compromising information about Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Ken Dilanian, Garrett Haake, Leigh Ann Caldwell, Rebecca Shabad reported from Washington, and Tom Winter, Tracy Connor, Rich Gardella, Sarah Fitzpatrick, Courtney McGee, Anna Schecter and Kenzi Abou-Sabe, Noah Levy and Benjamin Pu reported from NY.