Months ago, Donald Trump Jr testified privately about his father’s Russia scandal before the Senate Judiciary Committee. By all accounts, that testimony went poorly for him. Junior has apparently since gone on to refuse to speak with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, perhaps for fear of making even more of a mess. Now the Democrats on the committee are handing Junior to Mueller on a silver platter.
Two Democratic Senators on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sheldon Whitehouse and Richard Blumenthal, are now calling for the committee to vote on releasing the transcript of the Donald Trump Jr testimony (link). Let’s put this within context. Senator Dianne Feinstein, the Democratic ranking member of this committee, has already unilaterally released the Trump-Russia transcript from Glenn Simpson of Fusion GPS, after the Republicans on the committee refused to hold a vote on whether to release them. If the Republicans once again refuse to hold a vote, the Democrats will simply release Junior’s transcript as well. Either way, his testimony is imminently going public. So how bad is it?
Blumenthal says Donald Trump Jr’s testimony is “explosive” in nature, and that it contains “witness false statements.” This means that not only did Junior lie to the committee, it can be proven that he lied. The Republican majority on the committee will never vote to hold Junior in contempt of Congress. However, Junior’s exposed lies can help Mueller to get to the bottom of Donald Trump’s role in the attempted coverup of Junior’s Russia meeting.
Robert Mueller is aggressively pursuing Donald Trump for several separate counts of obstruction of justice, ranging from his firing of FBI Director James Comey, to his firing of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, to his failed attempt at forcing Attorney General Jeff Sessions to resign. All three of those men have since given cooperative interviews to Mueller. Now, because the Democrats are forcing the issue, Mueller is about to have the words of Donald Trump Jr as well.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report