On Thursday, the Inquisitr reported that Donald Trump’s longtime lawyer Michael Cohen — now under federal criminal investigation in New York — plans to tell Russia investigation Special Counsel Robert Mueller that Trump knew in advance of a meeting on June 9, 2016, in Trump Tower between a group of Kremlin-linked Russians and his own son, Donald Trump Jr., as well as his son-in-law Jared Kushner and then-Campaign Chair Paul Manafort. The Russians were reportedly offering “incriminating” information on Democrat Hillary Clinton.
If Cohen is telling the truth, his statements would offer the clearest known evidence of direct conspiracy — or “collusion” as it is widely termed — between Trump himself and the Russian government in the 2016 presidential election. But Trump denies that he knew anything about the meeting.
“I did NOT know of the meeting with my son, Don jr. Sounds to me like someone is trying to make up stories in order to get himself out of an unrelated jam,” Trump wrote on his Twitter account Friday.
But, as was reported at the time by Inquisitr and numerous other media outlets, just two days before the meeting, Trump appeared extremely excited about some type of new and damaging information on Clinton — so excited that he announced a major speech in which he would disclose this supposedly devastating information.
“I am going to give a major speech on probably Monday of next week and we’re going to be discussing all of the things that have taken place with the Clintons,” Trump announced at an appearance on June 7, 2016, as quoted by the Huffington Post. “I think you’re going to find it very informative and very, very interesting.”
The speech, however, never took place. Whether there is a connection between Trump’s failure to deliver on his anti-Clinton speech, and the Russians failure to produce anti-Clinton information remains unclear. The information that the Russians were reportedly offering involved an alleged, illegal campaign donation by businessman Bill Browder, a fierce critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, to Clinton, according to the Washington Post.
The same allegations — for which there is no evidence whatsoever, according to PolitiFact — were raised by Putin himself at his “summit” meeting with Trump in Helsinki on July 16 of this year.
If Trump did, in fact, know about the Trump Tower meeting and the potential damaging, supposed info on Clinton, the reason for his excitement two days before the meeting becomes evident. Not only does Cohen reportedly say that Trump knew in advance of the meeting, but former campaign aide Sam Nunberg told CNN that Trump knew of the meeting “a week before.”
Watch Trump’s remarks announcing his anti-Clinton speech on June 7, 2016, in the video below.
But Trump himself, despite his recent denials, also admitted that he “maybe” knew about the meeting, as Inquisitr reported last year.
Trump’s admission was intended as part of an off-the-record exchange with reporters on July 13, 2017. But the White House released a transcript of the remarks later that day, CNN reported.