.. unlike other previously undisclosed meetings, this one was very, very clearly denied — and repeatedly — by both parties. It was also apparently denied in or at least omitted from their testimonies to congressional investigators.
Although someone like Attorney General Jeff Sessions may have a credible argument that his denials of contact with Russians were the results of misunderstandings, Stone’s and Caputo’s denials were ironclad.
“I didn’t talk to anybody who was identifiably Russian during the two-year run-up to this campaign,” Stone told The Post in April 2017. “I very definitely can’t think of anybody who might have been a Russian without my knowledge. It’s a canard.”
.. Stone reasserted this in a March interview with Chuck Todd. “I never had any contact with any Russians,” he said.
.. Caputo went a step further, saying in emphatic and unmistakable terms that he told the House Intelligence Committee that he had no contact with Russians.
.. “I spent my time in front of the committee detailing the fact that I had no contact with Russians, that I never heard of anyone with the Trump campaign talking with Russians, that I was never asked questions about my time in Russia, that I never even spoke to anyone about Russia, that I never heard the word ‘Russia,’ and we did not use Russian dressing,” he said in July.
.. These denials so contradict what we just found out, in fact, that neither man is trying to parse them to square them with the new information. Instead both — rather remarkably — contend that they simply forgot about the Greenberg proffer until special counsel Robert S. Mueller III reminded them last month. And now both are amending their testimony
.. And it’s pretty clear what’s happening here. This is something that, judging by their conversations with Mueller, they knew was going to come out eventually.
.. And now they have a narrative into which they can insert it, thanks to Trump’s baseless claims about the FBI “spying” on his campaignvia an informant.
.. it looks significantly more like there was a coverup than it did 24 hours ago.
Roger Stone, means that at least six members of Trump’s broader team knew about offers of dirt from Russians during that campaign — and, depending on how that information was shared, as many as 10 may have, including Trump.
.. Papadopoulos sent an email to Trump adviser Stephen Miller the day after Mifsud reached out to him, telling Miller he had some “interesting messages” coming in from Moscow.
.. Trump’s argument has long been that there was no collusion between his campaign and the Russian government. That claim increasingly depends on how one defines “collusion.”
Special counsel Robert Mueller is looking into a meeting between longtime Donald Trump adviser Roger Stone and a Russian national during the height of the 2016 presidential campaign, according to Mr. Stone’s friend Michael Caputo, who is a witness in the probe.
Mr. Stone didn’t disclose the meeting, which he says was prompted by an offer of information detrimental to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, in his testimony before congressional investigators in September. He is now alerting House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes (R., Calif.) about it... Mr. Stone’s attorney said the Republican strategist had a “recently refreshed recollection” of the encounter after Mr. Caputo, a former Trump aide who helped arrange the May 2016 meeting, was questioned by Mr. Mueller’s office last month... the Russian man claimed “access to non-specific, damaging Clinton information which he wanted to sell.” He also added that his client declined to pay the $2 million requested.. he and Mr. Caputo now say they believe it was part of a sting operation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation... the Russian went by the name Henry Greenberg and that he has a history of working as an FBI informant. Mr. Caputo cited research about the man’s background and alleged ties to U.S. intelligence. The research was commissioned and paid for by Mr. Caputo’s legal defense fund.. “Few of the Trump team witnesses have proved worthy of being taken at their word,” said Rep. Eric Swalwell (D., Calif.), who serves on the House Intelligence Committee. The revelation about the meeting between Mr. Stone and the Russian national “proves how irresponsible it was for the House Republicans to wrap up our investigation and say nothing to see here,’” Mr. Swalwell said.