Jared Kushner, senior adviser and son-in-law to Donald Trump, arrived Monday morning for closed door questioning in front of the Senate about his contacts with Russian officials.
In remarks before his appearance, which were written and made public, Kushner denies any improper contacts or behavior. The 11-page statement details four meetings he had with Russian officials during the 2016 campaign. One of these meetings included one set up by Donald Trump Jr. with a Russian lawyer.
Kushner will answer questions before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Monday and then will answer more on Tuesday to the House Intelligence Committee. Both are looking into Russian interference in the 2016 election and also the contacts between Trump officials and Russia.
In his testimony, which will be submitted to the congressional committees, he denies any wrongdoing.
“I did not collude, nor know of anyone else in the campaign who colluded, with any foreign government,” he wrote. “I had no improper contacts. I have not relied on Russian funds to finance my business activities in the private sector.”
Kushner also wrote that his first meeting with Russian officials was in April 2016 at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington. He was introduced to four ambassadors, including Kislyak.
“The ambassadors also expressed interest in creating a positive relationship should we win the election. Each exchange lasted less than a minute, some gave me their business cards and invited me to lunch at their embassies. I never took them up on any of these invitations and that was the extent of the interactions,” said Kushner.
He did not give the names of the other ambassadors, and denied having any contact with Kislyak after this.
“While I participated in thousands of calls during this period, I do not recall any such calls with the Russian Ambassador.”
Kushner also acknowledged the meeting that took place with Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer, in which Kushner attended. He said the meeting was a waste of time and looked for a way out.
Meanwhile, the president tweeted on Monday calling the top Democrat on the House intelligence panel “sleazy”.
“Sleazy Adam Schiff, the totally biased Congressman looking into ‘Russia,’ spends all of his time on television pushing the Dem loss excuse!”