President Donald Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., and his former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, have reached a deal with the Senate Committee on the Judiciary that will permit them to avoid answering questions about alleged Russian collusion while under oath.
The two were originally scheduled for a public hearing before the committee Wednesday, but last Friday the committee’s leaders, Sens. Chuck Grassley and Dianne Feinstein, “announced they wouldn’t be issuing subpoenas and that the testimony given by Trump Jr. and Manafort would be private,” according to New York magazine.
Two days later Grassley appeared to confirm via a tweet directed at CNN host Jake Tapper that neither Trump Jr. nor Manafort would be testifying under oath as well.
Tell jake tapper at CNN it’s a crime to lie to congress whether trump jr is under oath or not. Pretty std way to conduct on record intrvu
— ChuckGrassley (@ChuckGrassley) July 23, 2017
Confirms CNN reporting that Manafort and Trump Jr will not be under oath when they testify behind closed doors https://t.co/dyrySJGTCY
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) July 23, 2017
Fellow committee member Sen. Al Franken was not pleased.
“No, that’s not good enough,” he complained to Tapper Sunday. “They should be under oath.”
The no oath stipulation was presumably reached during the negotiation between Trump/Manafort and the committee regarding whether the hearing would be public or private.
“But Trump and Manafort struck a compromise,” reported the New York Daily News, adding that a date for this newly negotiated hearing has not yet been set. “They agreed to be interviewed and to turn over documents — as long as they got to do so privately.”
The reaction on social media to this news has been one of unhinged liberal rage, as usual:
— Andrew James Gregor (@andrewjgregor) July 24, 2017
Don’t quit Sen Franken! We MUST call them on this fraudulent BULLSHIT. UNACCEPTABLE POLITICIZING and dealmaking. https://t.co/6Y5PfMpVfi
— Brian Hjelle (@Brian_Hjelle) July 24, 2017
As for Trump Jr., he has reportedly responded to calls for him to appear before the committee by beefing up his legal team.
Specifically, he’s hired criminal defense attorney c and Williams & Jensen attorney Karina Lynch, “who has previously worked on Congressional investigations and served as investigative counsel to Senator Chuck Grassley,” according to Vanity Fair.
He’s reportedly also been receiving advice from veteran D.C. attorney Fred Fielding, who served under former Presidents Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush.
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H/T The Daily Caller