Donald Trump denies fresh claim over son's meeting with Russian lawyer

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In a series of tweets Friday morning, Mr. Trump wrote, "So the Fake News doesn't waste my time with dumb questions, NO, I did NOT know of the meeting with my son, Don jr".

President Donald Trump is denying that he knew about a controversial summer 2016 meeting in Trump Tower between his son and Russians promising dirt on Hillary Clinton, a claim that Trump's ex-lawyer, Michael Cohen, is reportedly making.

Cohen's claim would contradict repeated denials by Trump, Donald Trump Jr., their lawyers and other administration officials who have said that the President knew nothing about the Trump Tower meeting until he was approached about it by The New York Times in July 2017.

The tape, first obtained by CNN, was secretly recorded by the president's former attorney, Michael Cohen. "I would not accept him in a case as a witness, as a prosecutor", he added later.

The assertion from Mr. Cohen, who is under federal investigation, is potentially important.

Trump Jr. told congressional investigators he did not tell his father about the meeting beforehand, according to documents released by the Senate Judiciary Committee. But he also left open the possibility that Trump might have known but later forgot about it. The Trump Org CFO also set up a monthly retainer through the company that was used to reimburse Cohen for the $130,000 hush money payment to Stormy Daniels.

But according to Goldberg on Friday, Giuliani doesn't appear to be helping Trump with his uncontrolled response to the Cohen revelations, which include his flip-flopping on Cohen's credibility.

The tapes of private conversations between Trump and Cohen have shifted to the forefront of a mounting conflict between the president and his former attorney.

Trump's team met with the Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, believing she had dirt on Clinton to share. "I'm starting to think Trump doesn't hire all the best people", he joked, laughing.

Fox reports that the claim about the meeting was one of the "most valuable potential pieces of information" Cohen possessed.

I suspect that a long line of presidents would dispute Trump's "tougher on Russia" claim, particularly Ronald Reagan.

Cohen could face legal trouble of his own if he didn't tell the House and Senate Intelligence committees the truth when he was interviewed in their Russian Federation probes.

The president described the story as "ridiculous" in a series of tweets on Friday, and again dismissed claims that there had been any collusion between his campaign and Russian Federation. "We are very confident of the accuracy and reliability of the information that has been provided by Mr. Trump, Jr., and on his behalf".

And speaking about Mr Trump's invitation to the White House, Mr Putin said he is "ready to go to Washington".

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