After months of denying any possible collusion scandals and downplaying the slow drip of a leaking ship, the Trump administration was finally dealt a blow. Earlier this week, Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort and other associates were indicted on money laundering and other charges while George Papadopoulos, a foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign, has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about contacts with people tied to the Russian government.
In light of events, fervent Trump supporters have already begun spinning the seemingly inevitable verdict that yes there was collusion and yes Trump has been lying about it for months.
In a CNN interview with network anchor Wolf Blitzer, Trump attorney and chief counsel for the right wing American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) Jay Sekulow adamantly denied that Papadopoulos did anything wrong in contacting Russian officials, According to Sekulow, the only thing Papadopoulos is guilty of is lying to the FBI, and that the only problem was that he had lied about them to the FBI. Sekulow previously insisted in a Fox News appearance that there was “no evidence of Russian collusion” within the Trump campaign; a claim he is apparently continuing to support.
However, Sekulow has somewhat changed his story, albeit still without blame nor remorse.
On his daily “Jay Sekulow Live” radio show – along with cohost and son Jordan Sekulow and ACLJ attorney Andrew Ekonomou – the idea that “collusion is not a crime” was raised.
“Remember how we said collusion is not a crime?” Jordan asked. “I think the Papadopoulos charges actually show that, that even trying to set up these meetings with Russians and doing all this work, that that alone is not a crime. There’s no crime for that. You can politically decide if you like a campaign that does this or doesn’t do that. The crime here is perjury.”
Ekonomou later repeated the line that “collusion is not a crime,” saying it’s just that “you don’t lie about it to the FBI.”
“He was doing shuttle meetings with many different countries,” Jordan Sekulow added, referring to Papadopoulos. “He just left out the meetings with Russia, so for that he gets in trouble legally.”
He just left out the meetings with Russia; something the Trump administration has denied since taking office.Click here for reuse options!
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