Top Intel Dem calls for Kushner, Manafort to testify about Russian meeting

Top Intel Dem calls for Kushner, Manafort to testify about Russian meeting
© Michael Bonfigli, Christian Science Monitor

Rep. Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffMask rules spark political games and a nasty environment in the House CIA says 'Havana syndrome' unlikely a result of 'worldwide campaign' by foreign power The Hill's Morning Report - Biden to make voting rights play in Atlanta MORE (D-Calif.) called Wednesday for Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort, as well as Donald TrumpDonald TrumpBiden says Roe v. Wade under attack like 'never before' On student loans, Biden doesn't have an answer yet Grill company apologizes after sending meatloaf recipe on same day of rock star's death MORE Jr. and everyone in the Trump campaign who helped organize a meeting with a Russian lawyer last year, to testify before Congress. 

Schiff, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, which is investigating any potential collusion over Russian election meddling, said on “CBS This Morning” that, though he expects the Trump administration to claim that they had “no intent to collude” with the Russian government, it’s “not much of a defense.”

“I think we need to do a lot to corroborate some of the evidence we've received before we can draw any conclusions," Schiff said.

ADVERTISEMENT

Trump Jr. on Tuesday released email interactions that detailed his meeting with a Russian lawyer who promised damaging information on Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonNo Hillary — the 'Third Way' is the wrong way The dangerous erosion of Democratic Party foundations The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Democrats see victory in a voting rights defeat MORE last year in the prime of the Trump’s campaign against her.

Schiff said Trump Jr., Manafort and Kushner, who is a senior adviser in the White House, made it clear that they were expecting damaging information and that they would welcome help from the Russian government.

"You have three central campaign people, indeed three of the most important in the Trump campaign, who go to this meeting with the full expectation of getting help from the Russian government and indeed have sent a signal to the Russian government they would welcome it, they would indeed love it," he said.

He said a potential conspiracy to violate U.S. election laws is a “very real issue” for the House Intelligence panel.

The lawmaker added that he would like to know if Trump Jr. and Trump campaign officials had coordinated with Russia over the timing of false news stories that were released last year, adding that the detail would be “significant.”

"In those emails, it's very significant that Donald Jr. said it would be most helpful to get this information in the late summer, he's already talking about timing," Schiff said.