DPCC Co-Chair Cicilline: This is Russian Interference with Our Most Sacred Institution, the Election of Our President
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Congressman David Cicilline Co-Chair of the House Democratic Policy & Communications Committee (DPCC), appeared on CNN’s Wolf with Wolf Blitzer to discuss the meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and a Kremlin-connected Russian lawyer. Below are excerpts from the interview. Click here to watch the video.
“This is the most serious information we've learned about this Russia investigation. Think about this, the President's campaign manager, his son-in-law, and his son meeting with a Russian attorney that was identified to Donald Trump Jr. as a Russian government attorney for purposes of sharing information about his opponent, that was part of the campaign of the Russian government to support the election of Donald Trump. Think about that, and this is very, very serious. Donald Trump Jr. just released his e-mails, which confirm that he knew these facts, that she was identified as a Russian lawyer, that was part of the Russian government campaign to help his father. This is Russian interference with our most sacred institution, the election of our President.”
“I think there are a number of statutes that are implicated, but this is really further evidence that we have got to continue with these very thorough investigations by the Intelligence Committees [and] by the Special Counsel. It's breathtaking that they were willing to receive information from an adversary of the United States, from the Russian government. Don’t forget, the only Republican Party platform that was changed at the request of the Trump campaign was their policy on Ukraine to be more favorable to Russia. That was the only area. A Presidential candidate and President who is fawning all over Vladmir Putin, who is criticizing all of our allies, but can’t manage to say one critical thing about Vladmir Putin, it’s very disturbing.”
“It's certainly the first hard evidence of a coordination of a willingness of the Trump campaign to receive help from the Russian government or from someone that was identified as an attorney for the Russian government. I think that's very, very significant. It confirms what we already knew, the conclusion of 17 of our intelligence agencies, that the Russians had an active campaign to help elect Donald Trump [and] to undermine Hillary Clinton. Apparently, everyone accepts that except for the President who continues to, even as recently as the G-20 Summit to say: ‘well I don't know, lots of people do that, maybe it was Russia, maybe it was others.’ This is very disturbing.”
“I think they certainly have to be put before their relevant committees, before the Special Counsel and testify under oath. They'll obviously testify on the context of a lot of other information that's being collected during the course of this investigation, but they have been untruthful in terms of not willing to disclose these visits [and] these conversations. It seems as if the only time the Trump associates acknowledge their meetings with the Russians is when it's reported and they're sort of forced to. Jared Kushner has had now three occasions where he met with the Russians which he failed to include on his disclosure report. I think these investigations have to be properly resourced, they have to be free from political interference, but it's important to get to the bottom of it and we have the Intelligence Committees doing that work and the Special Counsel doing it.”
“As a result of this White House being engulfed in this scandal and conflicts of interest and Russia investigations, none of the work for the American people is getting done. You have no jobs bill; no infrastructure bill; no bill to deal with the affordability of higher education, of workforce training, of securing the future of Medicare and social security. The work is not getting done, because this White House is consumed with these ongoing investigations and although they're serious and we have to get to the bottom of it, we shouldn't lose sight of the fact that as a result of this, we're not getting the work done for the American people.”