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Exclusive: Two key answers from Trump to Mueller

President Donald Trump told special counsel Robert Mueller in writing that Roger Stone did not tell him abou...

Posted: Nov 29, 2018 1:30 PM
Updated: Nov 29, 2018 1:30 PM

President Donald Trump told special counsel Robert Mueller in writing that Roger Stone did not tell him about WikiLeaks, nor was he told about the 2016 Trump Tower meeting between his son, campaign officials and a Russian lawyer promising dirt on Hillary Clinton, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

One source described the President's answers without providing any direct quotes and said the President made clear he was answering to the best of his recollection.

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This is the first insight into how the President responded to the Mueller team's written questions -- a key unknown as Mueller aims to wrap up his investigation and prepare his final report.

These two points -- WikiLeaks and the Trump Tower meeting -- are critical to Mueller's central mission: investigating whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russians during the 2016 campaign.

The President's lawyers previously told CNN the answers would match his public statements. Still, these written answers could be subject to criminal charges if false.

A spokesman for the special counsel declined to comment. CNN did not get a full readout of all of the President's answers to Mueller's questions.

According to many lawyers who have experience in cases such as this, adding the caveat that he has no recollection, as the President apparently did with these written answers to Mueller, is standard procedure as a way to try to shield a client should their recollections be challenged.

"It's well-documented how frequently he says or tweets false things, and there's no criminal exposure for that," said CNN legal analyst Carrie Cordero. "The difference is, if he lies in his statement to federal investigators, he is potentially exposing himself to criminal liability, assuming he attested to the accuracy of the information."

On WikiLeaks, Mueller's team has been investigating whether Stone, a Republican political operative and longtime Trump ally, knew in advance about WikiLeaks' dumps of hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee and Clinton's campaign chairman John Podesta at key times during the 2016 campaign.

Investigators have questioned multiple Stone associates in the past few months. Stone has denied having any advance knowledge of WikiLeaks releases.

"I never discussed any of this with Donald Trump. It's one of the questions that Mr. Mueller wants the President to answer -- one of the written questions. I'm highly confident that his answer will be that he knew nothing about it. We just never discussed it," Stone recently told CNN.

Stone's denial matches with what Trump told Mueller: that the two never spoke about WikiLeaks.

Trump vehemently denies colluding with Russia. He told The Associated Press in an interview last year, "When WikiLeaks came out ... never heard of WikiLeaks, never heard of it. When WikiLeaks came out, all I was just saying is, 'Well, look at all this information here, this is pretty good stuff.'"

On the 2016 Trump Tower meeting, the President has publicly said he didn't know about the meeting.

"I did NOT know of the meeting with my son, Don Jr," Trump tweeted in July.

The President's son told lawmakers he did not tell his father about the meeting in advance. He said he took the meeting to listen to what the Russians had to offer on Clinton.

Before the answers were submitted, Mueller had asked Trump's lawyers for call logs and visitor logs related to Stone from Trump Tower, CNN reported earlier this month. The request this late in the investigation surprised Trump's legal team.

Stone told CNN he has not been contacted by Mueller's team. Trump Jr. testified under oath to several congressional committees and provided documents to Mueller's investigators. His lawyer has declined to comment on whether Trump Jr. was interviewed by the special counsel.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 343505

Reported Deaths: 7543
CountyCasesDeaths
Hinds23932444
DeSoto23229283
Harrison20527329
Rankin15411291
Jackson15232252
Madison10959227
Lee10719179
Jones9047169
Forrest8723159
Lauderdale7884244
Lowndes7054151
Lamar702989
Lafayette6548124
Washington5595139
Pearl River5196152
Bolivar4954134
Oktibbeha494398
Panola4771112
Warren4728128
Marshall4701106
Pontotoc447773
Union433279
Monroe4330137
Neshoba4281181
Hancock428088
Lincoln4176116
Pike3667113
Leflore3627125
Tate353388
Alcorn350974
Sunflower347694
Scott341176
Adams340988
Yazoo339376
Copiah324968
Simpson322891
Itawamba314680
Coahoma314085
Tippah306568
Prentiss298863
Covington293484
Leake285475
Marion284181
Wayne277543
George272251
Grenada269488
Newton262364
Tishomingo239770
Winston236784
Jasper230648
Stone229637
Attala226373
Chickasaw219060
Holmes200174
Clay197654
Clarke186880
Tallahatchie183742
Calhoun181332
Smith179235
Yalobusha171540
Walthall145748
Lawrence142826
Greene140134
Amite137543
Noxubee135235
Perry133538
Montgomery133044
Carroll126431
Webster121232
Jefferson Davis116734
Tunica114227
Benton106725
Claiborne105331
Kemper102429
Humphreys100133
Franklin87923
Quitman84719
Choctaw82619
Wilkinson78032
Jefferson71328
Sharkey51618
Issaquena1736
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 587405

Reported Deaths: 11536
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson853851591
Mobile48932864
Madison37517533
Shelby27280257
Tuscaloosa27171465
Montgomery26172627
Baldwin25399329
Lee17224181
Calhoun15401334
Morgan15170291
Etowah14954370
Marshall13116235
Houston12077293
Elmore10915219
St. Clair10763252
Limestone10725158
Cullman10546205
Lauderdale10255254
DeKalb9508192
Talladega8949188
Walker7793288
Autauga7563114
Jackson7400117
Blount7362139
Colbert6703142
Coffee6365132
Dale5650117
Russell480243
Chilton4771117
Covington4749125
Franklin458181
Tallapoosa4519156
Escambia441383
Chambers3949125
Dallas3743163
Clarke371263
Marion3463107
Pike332579
Lawrence3263100
Winston298773
Bibb290465
Geneva283983
Marengo262467
Barbour250961
Pickens245562
Butler240872
Hale235578
Fayette227065
Henry213945
Monroe202141
Randolph201144
Cherokee199248
Washington185239
Macon170552
Crenshaw168358
Clay166259
Cleburne161345
Lamar151038
Lowndes145455
Wilcox132331
Bullock126542
Conecuh121332
Coosa118329
Perry110528
Sumter110333
Greene99137
Choctaw64425
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