The New York Times reports:
The June 3, 2016, email sent to Donald Trump Jr. could hardly have been more explicit: One of his father’s former Russian business partners had been contacted by a senior Russian government official and was offering to provide the Trump campaign with dirt on Hillary Clinton.
The documents “would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia and would be very useful to your father,” read the email, written by a trusted intermediary, who added, “This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump.”
If the future president’s elder son was surprised or disturbed by the provenance of the promised material — or the notion that it was part of an ongoing effort by the Russian government to aid his father’s campaign — he gave no indication.
He replied within minutes: “If it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer.” Four days later, after a flurry of emails, the intermediary wrote back, proposing a meeting in New York on Thursday with a “Russian government attorney.”
Donald Trump Jr. agreed, adding that he would likely bring along “Paul Manafort (campaign boss)” and “my brother-in-law,” Jared Kushner, now one of the president’s closest White House advisers.
The Washington Post reports:
The new information came as the White House has been forced to shift from denying contact between the Trump campaign and Russia to defending the encounter between the president’s eldest son and the Russian lawyer, which took place in the midst of the presidential race.
The White House sought to play down the significance of that encounter even as new details emerged indicating that it had been arranged at the behest of a Russian family that has ties to the Kremlin and a history of pursuing business deals with President Trump — including preliminary plans for a Trump Tower in Moscow.
The revelations put the Trump administration again on the defensive about its relationship with Moscow, and they seemed to add to a pattern of not disclosing Kremlin contacts or providing false information about them.
Here’s my statement and the full email chain pic.twitter.com/x050r5n5LQ
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) July 11, 2017