Donald Trump Jr.’s previously secret Trump Tower meeting with surrogates of the Russian government to obtain dirt on Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election has become one of the biggest scandals of an already scandal-ridden administration.
It’s of particular interest to special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible collusion, as well as the parallel Senate investigation. Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort were also in attendance at the meeting, implying the entire team judged it to be an important, worthwhile venture.
On Thursday, Trump Jr. sat down for a closed door testimony in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee, during which he admitted that he went to the meeting to get compromising material on Clinton. Months previously he had denied meeting with Russians at all, then switched his story to say he met to discuss adoptions, then finally admitted the truth.
“To the extent they had information concerning the fitness, character or qualifications of a presidential candidate, I believed that I should at least hear them out,” he said. He maintained that nothing of value came of the meeting, although even if it’s true it doesn’t mitigate his intentions, namely, colluding with a foreign power for campaign leverage.
The American public has a vested interest in getting to the truth of this matter, and we deserve a public hearing. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) seems to agree. According to Manu Raju of CNN, Feinstein said Trump Jr. will appear in public before the Senate Judiciary Committee “come hell or high water.”
"Come hell or highwater," Donald Trump Jr will appear in public before Senate Judiciary, Dianne Feinstein just told me
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) September 11, 2017
Feinstein’s commitment to seeing justice done for the American people is admirable, and hopefully, other senators will join her in her call for a public testimony. Only when the full truth of the 2016 election is revealed can this country begin to heal. It starts by holding the Trumps accountable for their repeated deceptions.
Rob Haffey is a writer, filmmaker, and winner of the ScreenCraft Writing Fellowship. He is a graduate of Drexel University.