Trump defends son after emails over Russian campaign help

U.S. President Donald Trump on Wednesday defended his eldest son as “innocent” following emails that showed Donald Trump Jr. welcomed Russian help against his father’s rival in the 2016 presidential election, deepening the controversy over purported Russian meddling.  Trump Jr. released a series of emails on Tuesday that revealed he had eagerly agreed to meet a woman he was told was a Russian government lawyer who might have damaging information about Democratic rival Hillary Clinton as part of Moscow’s official support for his father. Trump Jr., in a Fox News television interview later Tuesday, said: “In retrospect, I probably would have done things a little differently.” The president, after initially releasing a statement on Tuesday calling his son “high-quality,” on Wednesday praised the TV appearance and repeated his condemnation of investigations and media coverage of the Russia investigations. “He was open, transparent and innocent. This is the greatest Witch Hunt in political history. Sad!” Trump wrote on Twitter. The emails offered the most concrete evidence to date that Trump campaign officials embraced Russian help to win the election, a subject that has cast a cloud over Trump’s presidency and spurred multiple investigations. The Justice Department and Congress are both investigating alleged Russian interference in the November election and any possible collusion with Trump’s campaign. Moscow has denied meddling. On Wednesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov again hit back against the accusations and questioned why Trump’s son was being blamed over the meeting.—Reuters

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