President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that his son Donald Trump Jr. is “innocent” and news that he met with a Kremlin-linked lawyer is part of “the greatest Witch Hunt in political history.”
The president had released a brief statement through White House deputy press secretary Sarah Sanders a day earlier, calling his son “a high-quality person.” He followed up on Wednesday in a tweet praising Trump Jr.’s interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity the night before.
The president also retweeted a Fox News tweet referring to Trump Jr. as “the victim.”
After days of stories from The New York Times, Trump Jr. admitted on Tuesday to meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya to obtain negative information about Hillary Clinton, his father’s presidential election opponent. As seen in emails the president’s eldest son published to Twitter, the meeting was arranged by music publicist Rob Goldstone, who claimed the meeting was part of the Kremlin’s efforts to help his father get elected.
Trump Jr. has defended the meeting as “political opposition research” and said “nothing” came out of it. He also told Hannity he did not share details of the conversation with his father.
The latest revelations have reportedly caused turmoil in the White House, with Trump raging at the media and different factions within the administration blaming each other for the controversy. According to The Washington Post, Trump’s daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner have been pushing the president to fire his chief of staff, Reince Priebus. Meanwhile, sources told The New York Times the president has been lashing out at his personal lawyer, Mark Kasowitz, over his handling of the case, while Kasowitz has blamed Kushner for the fallout.