Jul 11, 2017

Trump Jr. was told Russian gov. wanted to help his father win

Carolyn Kaster / AP

Before meeting a Kremlin-connected lawyer in June of last year, Donald Trump Jr. was told in an email that he would be provided with damaging information on Hillary Clinton as part of a "Russian government effort to aid his father's candidacy," the New York Times reports.

The email came from Rob Goldstone, a publicist and acquaintance of Trump Jr.'s who arranged the meeting. Read more on the cast of characters behind the meeting.

Trump Jr.'s lawyer

"In my view, this is much ado about nothing. During this busy period, Robert Goldstone contacted Don Jr. in an email and suggested that people had information concerning alleged wrongdoing by Democratic Party front-runner, Hillary Clinton, in her dealings with Russia. Don Jr.'s takeaway from this communication was that someone had information potentially helpful to the campaign and it was coming from someone he knew. Don Jr. had no knowledge as to what specific information, if any, would be discussed."TimelineSaturday: When the NY Times first reported on the meeting, Trump Jr. said it was a brief introductory meeting and the primary topic of discussion was the adoption of Russian children. He had previously said he hadn't met with anyone related to Russia. Sunday: After the Times followed up with a report that Trump Jr had been promised "damaging information" on Clinton, Trump Jr. released a longer statement admitting that was the case, but claiming it "quickly became clear that she had no meaningful information. She then changed subjects and began discussing the adoption of Russian children."Monday: It is reported that Trump Jr. has hired a lawyer. Later, that lawyer releases the above statement saying Trump Jr.'s "takeaway" from the email was "someone had information potentially helpful to the campaign," implying that his takeaway was not that the information was coming from the Russian government.Trump's takeAfter hearing a couple of days ago that the meeting had taken place, per the Times: "The president was aggravated by the news of the meeting, according to one person close to him — less over the fact that it had happened, and more because it was yet another story about Russia that had swamped the media cycle."

Go deeper

In photos: India welcomes president with massive "Namaste Trump" rally

First Lady Melania Trump, President Trump and India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi attend the "Namaste Trump" rally at Sardar Patel Stadium in Motera, on the outskirts of Ahmedabad, on Monday. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump was addressing a massive rally after arriving with members of the U.S. first family in Ahmedabad, northwest India, Monday for a two-day visit.

Why it matters: The countries are forging deeper ties as India’s location, size and economic growth making it the "obvious counterweight to China" for American policymakers, per Axios' Dave Lawler and Zachary Basu. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is demonstrating the importance of the visit by holding a "Namaste Trump Rally" at a packed 110,000-capacity Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad — the world's largest cricket venue.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 34 mins ago - World

Concern over coronavirus spread: Italy, South Korea and Iran report more cases

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The number of novel coronavirus cases in South Korea, Italy and Iran jumped on Sunday as infections in mainland China continued to grow, the latest figures show.

The big picture: As South Korea and Italy stepped up emergency measures amid rising case numbers, World Health Organization officials expressed concern about infections with no clear link to China. COVID-19 has killed at least 2,619 people and infected almost 80,000 others, with all but 27 deaths occurring in mainland China.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 4 hours ago - Health

Sanders reveals free childcare plan for preschoolers

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks during a campaign rally on Saturday in El Paso, Texas. Photo: Cengiz Yar/Getty Images

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders announced on CBS' "60 Minutes" Sunday a new plan to guarantee free child care and pre-kindergarten to all American children from infancy to age four.

Details: In the wide-ranging interview, Sanders told Anderson Cooper he planned to pay for universal childcare with a wealth tax. "It's taxes on billionaires," he said.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy