Since I’m only a pretend political commentator on a gossip blog, I don’t even have to take the time to explain the ins and outs of what happened yesterday with Wikileaks, Don Trump Jr. and more. Suffice to say that Don Jr is as dirty as they come and Robert Mueller can draw a direct line between Russia’s pro-Trump intelligence operation -> Wikileaks -> Don Trump Jr. -> the Trump campaign -> Donald Trump.
Just before the stroke of midnight on September 20, 2016, at the height of last year’s presidential election, the WikiLeaks Twitter account sent a private direct message to Donald Trump Jr., the Republican nominee’s oldest son and campaign surrogate. “A PAC run anti-Trump site putintrump.org is about to launch,” WikiLeaks wrote. “The PAC is a recycled pro-Iraq war PAC. We have guessed the password. It is ‘putintrump.’ See ‘About’ for who is behind it. Any comments?” (The site, which has since become a joint project with Mother Jones, was founded by Rob Glaser, a tech entrepreneur, and was funded by Progress for USA Political Action Committee.)
The next morning, about 12 hours later, Trump Jr. responded to WikiLeaks. “Off the record I don’t know who that is, but I’ll ask around,” he wrote on September 21, 2016. “Thanks.”
The messages, obtained by The Atlantic, were also turned over by Trump Jr.’s lawyers to congressional investigators. They are part of a long—and largely one-sided—correspondence between WikiLeaks and the president’s son that continued until at least July 2017. The messages show WikiLeaks, a radical transparency organization that the American intelligence community believes was chosen by the Russian government to disseminate the information it had hacked, actively soliciting Trump Jr.’s cooperation. WikiLeaks made a series of increasingly bold requests, including asking for Trump’s tax returns, urging the Trump campaign on Election Day to reject the results of the election as rigged, and requesting that the president-elect tell Australia to appoint Julian Assange ambassador to the United States.
In response to The Atlantic’s exclusive reporting, Don Jr posted the DMs he got from Wikileaks, which is similar to what he did with the Russia-lawyer meeting when that was discovered a few months ago:
Here is the entire chain of messages with @wikileaks (with my whopping 3 responses) which one of the congressional committees has chosen to selectively leak. How ironic! 1/3 pic.twitter.com/SiwTqWtykA
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) November 14, 2017
Of course I can’t explain which laws were broken specifically here, but that’s not even the point. The point is that everyone in the Trump campaign lied about this sh-t, over and over and over again. It was largely believed that Russia “weaponized” Wikileaks last year and basically used Wikileaks as a laundering mechanism to barely hide their pro-Trump agenda. This is evidence that Wikileaks had that pro-Trump agenda the whole time too, and they were working in partnership with the Trump campaign. Oh, and Pence was sent out there to deny it at the time:
Flashback: October 14, 2016. Pence responds to reports that the Trump campaign is in cahoots with WikiLeaks: "Nothing could be further from the truth." pic.twitter.com/J4AjDrtjWF
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) November 14, 2017
In case you feel like going deeper, Politico has a handy timeline of events – go here to see. It’s difficult to keep track of what was said and when and which denials were offered and the larger context for all of this. Just know what Mueller is getting closer and it’s a real possibility that Don Jr could be getting indicted before Bigly Senior.
This is the most Russian possible talking point. pic.twitter.com/cxnWaN937R
— Ben Collins (@oneunderscore__) November 13, 2017
Photos courtesy of Getty.