Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump's husband and a senior adviser to President Donald Trump, met with the Senate for two hours Monday and publicly denied that he colluded with the Russian government during and after the 2016 presidential election, ABC News reports.
According to ABC News, Kushner denied all accusations, saying, "I did not collude with Russia, nor do I know of anyone else in the campaign who did so. I had no improper contacts. I have not relied on Russian funds for my businesses. And I have been fully transparent in providing all requested information."
Kushner's statement comes at the height of speculation of Russia's involvement in President Trump's election. In case you needed a little refresher, earlier this month, Donald Trump Jr. said he, Kushner and then-Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort met with a Russian lawyer last summer because they were promised confidential info about Hillary Clinton. The fact that Kushner met with the Senate privately on Monday is important because he is a top-level adviser to President Trump, and is the first close adviser to appear before Congress to openly address potential Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
Kushner released an 11-page statement that details the four meetings he had with foreign officials, including the meeting last summer with Trump Jr., Manafort and the Russian lawyer. Kushner said that going into the meeting, he had no idea it had anything to do with Hillary Clinton. “Reviewing emails recently confirmed my memory that the meeting was a waste of our time," he said in his statement.
Kushner defended these meetings with foreign officials by saying they are a part of his job as the liaison to foreign governments for President Trump’s campaign. Though he supports his past communications with Russia, many are wondering what exactly he discussed with these foreign officials.
According to NPR, Kushner states he “tried to be fully transparent” when it came to filling out the appropriate forms for security clearance with the meetings, but other information collected by NPR shows that Kushner has previously fallen short to perform this duty, and claimed it was due to miscommunication with his assistant. This raises questions—many people are wondering if there's more to the story than a simple “miscommunication."
Tuesday, Kushner will meet with the House Intelligence Committee, which will continue to investigate his relations with Russian officials during and after the 2016 election—but TBH, we all know he'll just keep denying any and all accusations.