Dem on Trump Jr. meeting: 'It's important that we all take a deep breath'

Dem on Trump Jr. meeting: 'It's important that we all take a deep breath'

Sen. Christopher CoonsChris Andrew CoonsDemocrats' filibuster gambit unravels Sen. Rob Portman announces positive COVID-19 test Ukraine president, US lawmakers huddle amid tensions with Russia MORE (D-Del.) said Wednesday that lawmakers should "take a deep breath" following the release of emails setting up Donald Trump Jr.'s meeting with a Russian lawyer who claimed to have damaging information on then-Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonNYT columnist floats Biden-Cheney ticket in 2024 Centrist Democrats urge progressives to tamp down rhetoric Stacey Abrams's shocking snub of Biden, Harris signals possible 2024 aspirations MORE

The emails have triggered a new line of inquiry in the investigation into Russia's meddling in the presidential election, with some Democrats saying they suggest more than obstruction of justice may have taken place.

But Coons cautioned that Democrats should be careful in moving forward. 

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"It's important that we all take a deep breath, continue our investigations, make sure we get the facts straight and understand this in the broader, legal context," Coons told host Alisyn Camerota on CNN's "New Day."

The Delaware senator called the news of Trump Jr.'s meeting last year with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya a "striking development." 

"This is a striking development in that Donald Trump Jr. received emails in which he was proffered, he was told he might receive, directly from a Russian government attorney, information from a hostile power, Russia, that was seeking to help his father win the presidential election," said Coons, who serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Coons also offered his own interpretation of the email chain of Trump Jr.'s correspondence with music promoter Rob Goldstone, who set about arranging the meeting with Veselnitskaya, saying his lack of surprise that the Russians wanted to help President TrumpDonald TrumpClyburn says he's worried about losing House, 'losing this democracy' Sinema reignites 2024 primary chatter amid filibuster fight  Why not a Manchin-DeSantis ticket for 2024? MORE is also "pretty striking."

"His enthusiasm for this meeting and his lack of surprise to get an email saying the Russian government was trying to help his dad win the election are both pretty striking."

Goldstone told Trump Jr. that Veselnitskaya had "information that would incriminate Hillary."

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Trump Jr. replied: “If it's what you say I love it.”

Coons said this meeting calls into question the claims by Trump associates that they did not have any interactions with the Russians. 

"Just on the face of it, that forces aside all the things that have been said by Trump campaign officials and the White House that there was no interactions with Russians."

The meeting took place in June 2016 at Trump Tower. Then-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner also attended the meeting.

Trump Jr. denies that he received any compromising information about Clinton.