"And I think it's very important to recognize that the president has expressed full confidence in Jared Kushner and also went on to note the considerable progress and very large important portfolio that Jared oversees here at the White House". It added that during that meeting, the Russians "broached the idea of using a secure line between the Trump administration and Russia, not Kushner".
It's a complete 180 from a year ago when Trump and many other Republicans made Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server the centrepiece of the 2016 presidential campaign.
The White House has tried to downplay Kushner's contacts, and Trump himself issued a statement Sunday night saying that "Jared is doing a great job for the country". News that the devoutly Catholic Spicer had not been invited to meet with Pope Francis during Trump's visit with the pontiff in the Vatican last week further fueled speculation he was on the outs.
CBS News has confirmed that when Kushner met with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak in December, the two discussed setting up a back channel for communications between the Trump transition team and Russian officials.
The original Washington Post story - corroborated by The New York Times and other news outlets - reported that Kushner proposed establishing a secret backchannel with the Kremlin during a December meeting with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
Russia's President Vladimir Putin says the allegations of Russian meddling in the U.S. presidential election are "fiction" invented by the Democrats in order to explain their loss.More news: Woman Ph.D Scholar Found Hanging at IIT-Delhi
More news: Intel's compact 'Compute Card' goes official, will start shipping in August 2017
More news: We're made for each other, says Modi on India-Germany ties
Trump's second tweet on Tuesday morning involved Germany: "We have a MASSIVE trade deficit with Germany, plus they pay FAR LESS than they should on North Atlantic Treaty Organisation & military".
Some Democrats are already asking for an investigation and even calling for Kushner's security clearance to be revoked. Kushner may have discussed a secret communication channel between Russian Federation and the transition team.
"Very concerned about the nature of these approaches to the Russians", former United States Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said in a Sunday morning news show interview.
Jared Kushner's vaguely-defined role an unpaid senior White House adviser includes relations with China.