Kushner ties to Russian Federation questioned as Trump blasts media — AP Report


But he said Russians may have been trying to "play" the Trump Team.

Trump meting with attorneys at the White House on Sunday, presumably over the latest development in the long-running Russian Federation intelligence saga, news reports said.

He says the government needs to "get to the bottom" of the allegations, and if they are true, "there's no way" Kushner should keep his security clearance.

"There's another question about his security clearance and whether he was forthcoming about his contacts on that", Schiff said on ABC News's "This Week with George Stephanopoulos".

Six of the sources said there were multiple contacts between Kushner and Kislyak but declined to give details beyond the two phone calls between April and November and the post-election conversation about setting up a back channel.

USA intelligence operatives reportedly learned about Kushner's interest in backchannel talks through communications that Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak had with Moscow.

The request arrived last week at campaign headquarters in NY, according to a person familiar with the request.

If the topic of the secret communication was about Syria, that doesn't mitigate the situation because Russia's objectives are different from those of the USA, especially given intelligence that Russian Federation tried to interfere in the US presidential election, Schiff said.

Led by NY attorney, Marc E. Kasowitz, the president's private legal team is preparing to meet in Washington to discuss new revelations about contacts between Kushner and representatives of Russian President Vladimir Putin. "He has no recollection of the calls as described". Asked whether Kushner's clearance should be revoked or at least suspended until an investigation is completed, Booker gave a long-winded answer that amounted to "no". The challenges we face around the world are vast, but with a strategic focus on our long-term goals, I am confident we can reassert USA leadership, strengthen key alliances and improve security both at home and overseas. So one is this administration not talking about our values, cozying up to authoritarian leaders.

However, Mr Cohn said "we're just not going to comment [on Mr Kushner]".

The back channel with Russian Federation could actually be a "good thing" as long the White House realizes the information coming in from Russian Federation may be false.

Expanding teams of lawyers and experienced public relations hands are being recruited to deal with the drumbeat of new revelations about Moscow's interference and possible improper dealings with the Trump campaign and associates.

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Trump tweets that "it is my opinion that numerous leaks coming out of the White House are fabricated lies" from what he calls the "FakeNews media". But he said if they are, "I think any channel of communication, back or otherwise, with a country like Russian Federation is a good thing".

The White House was declining comment Saturday about news reports that President Donald Trump's son-in-law and senior advisor, Jared Kushner, attempted to set up a secret communications channel with Moscow.

"It's both normal, in my opinion, and acceptable", Kelly said.

"I think any time you can open lines of communication with anyone, whether they're good friends or not-so-good friends, is a smart thing to do", Kelly said.

"I have to say, at the time I left, I did not see any smoking gun certitude evidence of collusion. But people familiar with the matter say the Federal Bureau of Investigation now considers the encounter, as well as another meeting Kushner had with a Russian banker, to be of investigative interest", the daily reported.

As CBS2's Hazel Sanchez reported, Trump was back on USA soil and back on the defensive Sunday.

Rep. Raja Krishnamoorth, a Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, wants the White House to suspend Jared Kushner's security clearance following a report that said the president's son-in-law and senior adviser sought to establish a secret line of communication with Russian Federation during the president's transition, The Hill reports.

The Washington Post's Paul Kane contributed to the report.

Michael Flynn, the national security adviser-in-waiting, also attended. Officials said he misled Vice President Mike Pence about whether he and the ambassador had discussed US sanctions against Russian Federation in a phone call. He has not been contacted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation yet.

But there have been a number of as yet unexplained contacts - during last year's presidential campaign against Democrat Hillary Clinton and afterward - between other top Trump aides and senior Russian officials, including Flynn, US Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Manafort and others. He remains an influential confidant within the White House, as does his wife, Ivanka Trump.

According to McMaster and Cohn, Kushner was a private citizen at the time, not a United States government official.