I'll give Jared Kushner credit. He knows when to shut up and instead let his idiot brother-in-law talk — which is a true Thanks-giving gambit. "Lawyers for Mr. Kushner … confirm[ed] that he voluntarily disclosed the meeting but referr[ed] questions about it to Donald Trump Jr.," who, as Jared knows, is doing a splendid job of incriminating himself.
"The meeting" in question was, of course, the June 2016 Trump Tower gathering of Trump Jr., Kushner, Paul Manafort and Russian lawyer and Kremlin operative Natalia Veselnitskaya, which Trump Jr. described as "primarily" a discussion "about the adoption of Russian children." To clarify, that was Trump Jr.'s initial description, on Saturday. On Sunday, however, the NY Times interviewed "three advisers to the White House briefed on the meeting and two others with knowledge of it." And Trump's story changed.
I was told [that Veselnitskaya] might have information helpful to the campaign…. The woman stated that she had information that individuals connected to Russia were funding the Democratic National Committee and supporting Ms. Clinton. Her statements were vague, ambiguous and made no sense…. It quickly became clear that she had no meaningful information. She then changed subjects and began discussing the adoption of Russian children.... It became clear to me that this was the true agenda all along and that the claims of potentially helpful information were a pretext for the meeting.
Notes the Times: Trump's revised account and other corroborating accounts "represent the first public indication that at least some in the campaign were willing to accept Russian help" — a now-indisputable truth that lies at the heart of all the investigations into Trump-Russia collusion. As the Washington Post further notes: "Trump has a go-to playbook in situations like these: cast doubt on the credibility of unnamed sources (five, in this case) and cry, 'Fake news!' But Trump Jr. took that strategy off the table with a stunningly compromising first response." And second.
Remarked former White House ethics lawyer Richard Painter: "We do not get our opposition research from spies, we do not collaborate with Russian spies, unless we want to be accused of treason. If this story is true, we [in the Bush WH would have had] … them in custody by now, and we’d be asking them a lot of questions. This is unacceptable. This borders on treason, if it is not itself treason."
And it was willingly given up.
There still remains the even stranger possibility that Trump Sr.'s lawyer also gave up a truth when he suggested that "the meeting was a setup"; that Ms. Veselnitskaya "misrepresented" who she was; that indeed she subtly presented herself as a Russian blackmailer, based on "unproven allegations against the president" contained in the Steele dossier (which are no longer quite as unproven).
But who knows? The Trump regime consistently lies. Except, it seems, for Junior. I guess he's too young and inexperienced to have yet gotten the hang of his father's grifting methodology.