Pence aide: VP didn't know about communications between Trump Jr., WikiLeaks

Pence aide: VP didn't know about communications between Trump Jr., WikiLeaks
© Greg Nash

Vice President Pence didn't know about contact between Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpCorker: US must determine responsibility in Saudi journalist's death Five takeaways from testy Heller-Rosen debate in Nevada Dem senator calls for US action after 'preposterous' Saudi explanation MORE Jr. and WikiLeaks during the presidential campaign that was revealed late Monday, Pence's aide said.

“The Vice President was never aware of anyone associated with the campaign being in contact with Wikileaks,” Pence’s press secretary, Alyssa Farah, said in a statement, according to Politico. “He first learned of this news from a published report earlier tonight.”

In October 2016, Pence denied the Trump campaign was "in cahoots" with WikiLeaks when asked during a Fox News interview.

"Nothing could be further from the truth," he said at the time. “I think all of us have, you know, have had concerns about WikiLeaks over the years and it's just a reality of American life today, and of life in the wider world.”

The president's eldest son confirmed Monday he occasionally exchanged private messages with WikiLeaks on Twitter before the 2016 election.

The WikiLeaks Twitter account sent a direct message to Trump Jr. in late September 2016 alerting him that an anti-Trump site run by a political action committee was "about to launch." The message offered the password to the site.

“Off the record I don’t know who that is, but I’ll ask around,” Trump Jr. responded to the account the following day. It is unclear if he followed through with the offer. 

The correspondence has reportedly been given to lawmakers investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

WikiLeaks published stolen emails from the Democratic National Committee and Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta ahead of the election. The U.S. intelligence community has linked the releases to a multipronged effort by the Russian government to interfere in the election. WikiLeaks has denied any connections to the Kremlin.