Fox News senior judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano said early Tuesday that the 2016 meeting in Trump Tower that President TrumpDonald TrumpPredictions of disaster for Democrats aren't guarantees of midterm failure A review of President Biden's first year on border policy Hannity after Jan. 6 texted McEnany 'no more stolen election talk' in five-point plan for Trump MORE confirmed was meant to gather information on then-Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThe dangerous erosion of Democratic Party foundations The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Democrats see victory in a voting rights defeat Left laughs off floated changes to 2024 ticket MORE could amount to a crime of conspiracy.
During an appearance on “Fox & Friends,” host Steve Doocy asked the former judge whether it is against the law for a person who works in politics to “try and dig up dirt on your opponent?"
“No of course not, and everybody does it, and to that extent, the president’s correct,” Napolitano said.
But the analyst added that there are “federal statutes that prohibit receiving something of value from a foreign national, foreign entity or foreign government."
“So was the purpose of this meeting to receive something of value? That’s something Bob Mueller’s going to have to look at,” Napolitano continued, referring to the special counsel investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, including whether the Trump campaign colluded with Moscow.
“Is there a crime here or conspiracy?” co-host Ainsley Earhardt asked Napolitano.
“I don’t know the answer to that. But unfortunately, a lot of these statutes are written to make it easier for the government to convict,” Napolitano said in response.
“So if there was an agreement to receive dirt on Hillary from the Russians, even if the dirt never came, if those who agreed, at least one of them, took some step in furtherance of the agreement, then there is the potential crime for conspiracy,” Napolitano added.
Napolitano's comments come just days after the president confirmed June 2016 meeting in Trump Tower between campaign officials including his eldest son, Donald Trump Jr.Don TrumpRittenhouse to speak at Turning Point USA event White House calls Jan. 6 text revelations 'disappointing' Court orders release of some redacted passages of Mueller report MORE, and a Russian lawyer was meant to gather information on Clinton.
"This was a meeting to get information on an opponent, totally legal and done all the time in politics — and it went nowhere. I did not know about it!" Trump said in a tweet over the weekend.
The meeting is receiving renewed attention after Trump’s former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, reportedly said the president was aware of the meeting before it took place, though Trump has repeatedly denied knowing about the meeting.