Donald Trump Jr. is on the defensive about the scandal involving emails … and this time, the emails aren’t Hillary Clinton’s.
On Tuesday, a scandal erupted after it was revealed that Trump Jr. arranged a meeting with Russian government lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya through emails with music publicist Rod Goldstone.
The eldest Trump son spoke exclusively to Fox News’ Sean Hannity about the “very high level” information intended to bolster the Trump presidential campaign that he received from Russia about Clinton.
Trump Jr. told Hannity that although he “probably would have done things a little differently,” the meeting with Veselnitskaya during his father’s presidential campaign was “a nothing.”
“I wouldn’t have even remembered it until you started scouring through this stuff,” the businessman said. “It was literally just a wasted 20 minutes, which was a shame.”
“For me, this was opposition research,” Trump Jr. said. “They had something, you know, maybe concrete evidence to all the stories I’d been hearing about … so I think I wanted to hear it out. But really it went nowhere, and it was apparent that wasn’t what the meeting was about.”
Trump Jr. tweeted the email out before The New York Times could publish it, attracting the interest of special counsel Robert Mueller, who is spearheading the investigation into the Trump campaign’s possible collusion with Russia to sway the outcome of the 2016 election.
“I had been reading about scandals that people were probably underreporting for a long time, so maybe it was something that had to do with one of those things,” Trump Jr. told Hannity. “I didn’t know if there was any credibility. I didn’t know if there was anything behind it. I can’t vouch for the information. Someone sent me an email. I can’t help what someone sends me. I read it; I responded accordingly.”
The U.S. House Intelligence Committee wants Trump Jr. to appear before the panel to answer questions about his meeting.
Rep. Adam Schiff said the committee also wants to interview everyone connected with the meeting, including top Trump adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner and former campaign manager Paul Manafort, according to Reuters.
Trump Jr. said he did not tell his father about the meeting because “there was nothing to tell,” the Associated Press reported.
The full interview with Trump Jr. will air at 10 p.m. on the Fox News Channel.