Why Wasn’t Donald Trump Jr. Interviewed By Robert Mueller? Special Counsel Stays Mum
During his House testimony, Special Counsel Robert Mueller was peppered with questions about why Donald Trump Jr. was not questioned during his Russian probe about the Trump Tower meeting in June, 2016.
The meeting between Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, was part of the Trump campaigns’ continued efforts to use Hillary Clinton’s emails against her in the 2016 election. Trump Jr. jumped at the opportunity to get “dirt’ on Clinton, He was quoted as saying “I love It” when asked if the meeting was something he was interested in. Trump’s former Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort and the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, were also at the meeting. Manafort spoke with investigators, but his testimony was deemed untruthful. Kushner also spoke with investigators.
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Mueller’s report shows that Trump Jr. was the only family member to decline to be interviewed.
The reason he was not forced to take part in an interview is that he would have likely used his right to 5th Amendment protections, which gives him the right not to answer questions in an investigation that might incriminate him.
Former head of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Chuck Rosenberg, told NBC, “There’s zero chance you wouldn’t want to talk to him, which means there’s a very good chance he would’ve invoked his 5th Amendment right.”
At the House hearing, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-California) asked Mueller if Trump Jr. was subpoenaed in the investigation to which he responded, “I’m not going to discuss that.”
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-California) said he did not think there was a need to argue Mueller’s conclusion that he could not prosecute Trump Jr. for conspiracy because of insufficient evidence. Schiff felt that it was imperative that all the evidence be reviewed as “it is damning.”
Although Mueller’s investigation has concluded, members of Congress are still investigating. Trump Jr. met with a Senate Intelligence Committee last month to clarify false testimony he gave to the committee earlier.