Published: Fri, July 14, 2017
Global Media | By Garry Long

Lawmakers intend to question Trump campaign chairman

Lawmakers intend to question Trump campaign chairman

The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee has formally asked Donald Trump testify before his panel about his meeting past year with a Russian attorney at Trump Tower. Thursday requesting that he testify before the committee, Chairman Chuck Grassley told CNN.

Grassley was referring to reports of Manafort participating in a meeting arranged by Donald Trump Jr. with a Russian lawyer under the guise of receiving damaging information on Democrat Hillary Clinton. But as has been mentioned before, those close to Manafort say he has been cooperative and will continue to be - he's just waiting on the committee to give him a date for the hearing.

Manafort, who resigned as Trump's campaign manager in August 2016 after about five months on the job, is under investigation by the FBI for business dealings and lobbying efforts associated with Ukrainian political campaigns.

It's likely the questioning of Manafort might extend beyond the foreign agent act to probe the more recent allegations.

The scope of congressional investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential contest came into sharper focus on Wednesday, July 12, as lawmakers said they meant to question the former chairman of the Trump campaign and to determine whether Russian social media "trolls" were connected to Trump's election efforts.

On Sunday, Trump Jr. issued a statement, in which he said it had become clear during the meeting that Veselnitskaya had no meaningful information on the Democratic National Committee's links with Russia-connected individuals.

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Grassley has questions about whether Veselnitskaya should have been registered and whether the foreign agent act is being properly enforced.

Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee Chuck Grassley in Washington on September 20, 2016.

Grassley declined to comment on whether he thought there was anything criminal in Trump Jr.'s meeting with Veselnitskaya.

"It was in the previous administration [and] if there had been enforcement of the immigration laws, she wouldn't have been in the country", said Grassley.

President Trump says the woman is a private lawyer who has "roamed the hallways" of the US Congress.

After the New York Times initially reported the meeting, Trump Jr. said that he believed he would be given opposition research against Clinton and maintained that he did nothing wrong or out of the ordinary.

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