Jared Kushner defends himself after Senate hearing: "I did not collude with Russia"

Jared Kushner speaks out. Instead of talking about Russia though, he talks about his father-in-law's election win

By Matthew Rozsa

Staff Writer

Published July 24, 2017 2:27PM (EDT)

Jared Kushner   (AP/Alex Brandon)
Jared Kushner (AP/Alex Brandon)

Jared Kushner, the son-in-law and top adviser to President Donald Trump, delivered a public statement to reporters on Monday that disclaimed any possibility that he colluded with the Russian government.

"Let me be very clear: I did not collude with Russia, nor do I know of anyone else in the campaign who did so. I had no improper contacts, I have not relied on Russian funds for my businesses and I have been fully transparent in providing all requested information," Kushner said.

He later added, "Donald Trump had a better message and ran a smarter campaign and that is why he won. Suggesting otherwise ridicules those who voted for him."

Kushner's approach toward the growing Russia scandal is eerily reminiscent to that used by his father-in-law. In addition to denying everything, they try to pivot attention away from the growing pile of evidence by characterizing all talk of the Russia scandal as sour grapes from Hillary Clinton's erstwhile supporters.

During his Senate hearing earlier in the day, Kushner claimed that he had arrived at the meeting late and — after hearing that the conversation was about Russian adoption policy — left early once he had deemed it to be a waste of his time.

"I had no idea why that topic was being raised and quickly determined that my time was not well-spent at this meeting," Kushner said in his Senate testimony. "Reviewing emails recently confirmed my memory that the meeting was a waste of our time and that, in looking for a polite way to leave and get back to my work, I actually emailed an assistant from the meeting after I had been there for 10 or so minutes and wrote, ‘Can u pls call me on my cell? Need excuse to get out of meeting.’"

By Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer at Salon. He received a Master's Degree in History from Rutgers-Newark in 2012 and was awarded a science journalism fellowship from the Metcalf Institute in 2022.

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