Man Who Arranged Trump Tower Meeting Says Mueller Probe Was ‘Not a Witch Hunt’
During the course of the Russia investigation, President Donald Trump frequently derided the inquiry, which was led by special counsel Robert Mueller, as a “witch hunt.”
Following the conclusion of that investigation, Trump has gone on the offensive, and has even gone so far as to describe the inquiry and those who were a part of it as “treasonous.”
But the individual who helped to facilitate a meeting at Trump Tower between members of Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and a Russian lawyer with deep ties to Moscow leaders said this week that the investigation was not the “witch hunt” that the president has characterized it as.
“I hope that everyone will realize this was not a witch hunt,” Rob Goldstone said, per reporting from Talking Points Memo. “This was a very, very valid exercise in democracy.”
Goldstone, a representative who works on behalf of international music acts, helped arrange the Trump Tower meeting in July of 2016 at the behest of one of his clients’ fathers. That individual had previously done work with Trump in 2013, when the business mogul hosted the Miss Universe pageant in Moscow.
Publicist Rob Goldstone on Mueller report, Trump's media backlash, and why it isn't over yet for him https://t.co/Pd9xFEFxxT
— Variety (@Variety) March 27, 2019
Goldstone said his client’s father knew a lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, who alleged she had information about Trump’s Democratic presidential opponent, Hillary Clinton, that could damage her reputation and help Trump’s campaign. Veselnitskaya is a lawyer who has deep ties to leaders within the Russian government, according to reporting from the New York Times.
When Goldstone emailed then-candidate Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., the meeting was scheduled and went down at Trump Tower that summer.
Also included in the meeting were Trump’s then-campaign manager Paul Manafort and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, who is now an adviser to the president.
Goldstone said he has cooperated with the Mueller investigation in the past. He also explained that he’s testified before Congressional committees at least five times — and is open to appearing before them more, if needed.
But he also believes that people should step away from focus on the Russia investigation — if the report actually says what Attorney General William Barr said it does in a letter he wrote over the weekend to Congress.
“[A]t the end of the day if the findings are as we believe they are and there’s no reason to think otherwise, then really people should move on,” Goldstone said.