ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

cloudy-day
89°
Isolated Thunderstorms
H 90° L 73°
  • cloudy-day
    89°
    Current Conditions
    Isolated Thunderstorms. H 90° L 73°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day
    78°
    Evening
    Isolated Thunderstorms. H 90° L 73°
  • cloudy-day
    75°
    Morning
    Mostly Cloudy. H 85° L 74°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest newscast

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest traffic report

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest forecast

00:00 | 00:00

National Govt & Politics
Trump Jr. glad Senate testimony 'is finally over'
Close

Trump Jr. glad Senate testimony 'is finally over'

Trump Jr. glad Senate testimony 'is finally over'
Photo Credit: AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais
Donald Trump Jr., the son of President Donald Trump, is seen leaving after having met privately with members of the Senate Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill on Washington, Wednesday, June 12, 2019 (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Trump Jr. glad Senate testimony 'is finally over'

Donald Trump Jr., the president's eldest son, spoke to the Senate intelligence committee for around three hours Wednesday, following up on a 2017 interview with the same panel as part of its two-year-long Russia investigation.

Trump Jr. said after the interview that he is "glad this is finally over." He said he was happy to clarify answers from the earlier interview with the panel's staff, but told reporters, "I don't think I changed any of what I said because there was nothing to change."

Senators wanted to discuss the answers Trump Jr. gave in that 2017 interview, as well as the answers he gave to the Senate Judiciary Committee in a separate interview behind closed doors that year. He appeared in response to a subpoena from the panel's Republican chairman, North Carolina Sen. Richard Burr, as part of the Russia investigation.

The president's former lawyer Michael Cohen told a House committee in February that before the presidential election he had briefed Trump Jr. approximately 10 times about a plan to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. But Trump Jr. told the Judiciary panel he was only "peripherally aware" of the real estate proposal.

The panel was also interested in talking to him about other topics as well, including a 2016 campaign meeting in Trump Tower in New York with a Russian lawyer that captured the interest of special counsel Robert Mueller. Emails leading up to the meeting promised dirt on Democrat Hillary Clinton, Trump's opponent. Mueller's report, released in April, examined the meeting but found insufficient evidence to charge anyone with a crime.

Trump Jr. contradicted Cohen's claim to the senators, according to a person close to Trump Jr. and familiar with Wednesday's interview. He claimed he did not pay special attention to Trump Tower Moscow because it was just one of many projects happening around that time, the person said. Trump Jr. also repeated his earlier claim that he had not told his father about the Trump Tower meeting.

The person requested anonymity because the person was not authorized to discuss the meeting publicly.

Trump Jr. would not discuss the details of the Senate interview as he left, but said he was happy to comply if clarification was needed.

"I am glad this is finally over, we're able to put some final clarity on that, and I think the committee understands that," he said. Asked as he walked away if he is worried about perjury, Trump Jr. said "not at all."

He also noted that Cohen is "serving time right now for lying to these very investigative bodies."

Cohen pleaded guilty last year to campaign finance violations, lying to Congress and other crimes. He is currently serving a three-year prison sentence.

Trump Jr.'s testimony comes as the Intelligence Committee continues its two-year investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election. Some Republicans are becoming restless with the topic, and Burr received considerable blowback from colleagues over the subpoena. But he told fellow senators that Trump Jr. had backed out of an interview twice, forcing the committee to act.

Neither Burr nor the top Democrat on the panel, Virginia Sen. Mark Warner, would comment on the interview as they left.

The president said in May he believed his son was being treated poorly.

"It's really a tough situation because my son spent, I guess, over 20 hours testifying about something that Mueller said was 100 percent OK and now they want him to testify again," Trump told reporters at the White House. "I don't know why. I have no idea why. But it seems very unfair to me."

It was the first known subpoena of a member of the president's immediate family, and some Republicans went so far last month as to suggest Trump Jr. shouldn't comply.

Burr's home state colleague, Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., tweeted, "It's time to move on & start focusing on issues that matter to Americans." Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, a GOP member of the panel, said he understood Trump Jr.'s frustration. Cornyn's Texas colleague, Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, said there was "no need" for the subpoena.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has defended Burr, saying "none of us tell Chairman Burr how to run his committee." Still, McConnell made it clear that he is eager to be finished with the probe, which began in early 2017.

It's uncertain when the intelligence panel will issue a final report. Burr told The Associated Press last month that he hopes to be finished with the investigation by the end of the year.

___

Associated Press writer Padmananda Rama contributed to this report.

Read More

The Latest Headlines You Need To Know

  • A Springfield, Ohio, man who pleaded guilty to killing his neighbor’s dog with a baseball bat in April avoided jail time and was sentenced to community service. Jeffrey Sagraves was ordered to 40 hours of community service and to pay $300 in fines for burglary and cruelty to a companion animal. >> On WHIO.com: Springfield man accused of killing dog with baseball bat He was facing a maximum of 18 months in jail for burglary and 12 months for cruelty to a companion animal. In October, Sagraves called 911 to report that there were two pit bulls in his backyard attacking his cat, according to Clark County Common Pleas Court documents. During the call, he reportedly told dispatchers that the dogs belonged to his neighbor and threatened to kill the dogs if police didn’t show up soon The cat died during the attack, according to court records. >> Read more trending news  Minutes later, a neighbor, Lisa Marie Everhart, called 911 and said a man identified as Sagraves reportedly broke into her home and hit her dog in the head with a wooden bat. She was visibly upset, as well as her young children, who were screaming and crying, according to a court affidavit. Everhart was charged with a misdemeanor for failing to confine her dogs.
  • President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Saturday to slam The New York Times for its report that the United States has increased cyberattacks on Russia's power grid. >> Read more trending news  'Do you believe that the Failing New York Times just did a story stating that the United States is substantially increasing Cyber Attacks on Russia,' Trump tweeted shortly after 9 p.m. Saturday. 'This is a virtual act of Treason by a once great paper so desperate for a story, any story, even if bad for our Country.' He continued: 'ALSO, NOT TRUE! Anything goes with our Corrupt News Media today. They will do, or say, whatever it takes, with not even the slightest thought of consequence! These are true cowards and without doubt, THE ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE!' >> See the tweets here Earlier Saturday, the newspaper, citing 'current and former government officials,' reported that the U.S. 'is stepping up digital incursions into Russia's electric power grid.'  The news comes at least seven years after U.S. officials began putting 'reconnaissance probes' in Russia's grid, the Times reported. 'But now the American strategy has shifted more toward offense, officials say, with the placement of potentially crippling malware inside the Russian system at a depth and with an aggressiveness that had never been tried before,' the Times reported, adding that the move is part-warning, part-preparation for launching U.S. attacks 'if a major conflict' with Russia develops. Two unnamed officials with the Trump administration said they did not think the president had received detailed briefings about the U.S. implants in the Russian electric system, according to the Times.  Officials have hesitated to give him the details over worries that he might divulge information to foreign officials or react unfavorably, sources told the Times. Read more here.
  • Its going to be a busy day in Central Florida this Tuesday as Orlando prepares for President Trump's arrival and re-election rally at the Amway Center. As expected, there will be both supporters and protesters who show up to this event. In anticipation of this rally, some protesters have launched a Go Fund Me campaign to bring what they call a V.I.P.( or very important protester) to Orlando's Win With Love Rally.  They are hoping to raise $3,500 to bring the Baby Trump balloon to Orlando. You may remember this balloon was flown over London back in July of 2018 in protest while President Trump made a visit to the United Kingdom.  The funds will not only cover the costs to transport, set up, anchor, and staff the balloon, but also to cover interpretation and Real Time Captioning services for those who are hard of hearing and for non English monolingual speakers.  You can see the funds that have been raised so far here. You can also find out more information about the anti-Trump rally on Facebook here.
  • The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating a deputy involved shooting Saturday morning that put a man in the hospital. They say at 1 a.m., Osceola County deputies found an abandoned black 2016 Dodge Ram parked on the shoulder of Poinciana Boulevard near the intersection by Reeves Road. The car reportedly still had the keys in the ignition. After further investigation, they found a man, identified as 41 year old Zachary Aaron Dollar hiding in the wooded area on the northbound side of the Boulevard.  Police say Dollar hid behind a concrete telephone pole and then ran out aggressively towards the deputy. After failing multiple commands from the deputy to stop, that's when Dollar was shot in the abdomen by the deputy. After he was hit, he then began to obey and deputies were able to help him. An opened folding knife was reportedly found in the area that the deputy met Dollar.  So far, Dollar's injuries are non-life threatening and the empty car is registered in Dollar's name. The deputy involved in the shooting is on administrative while with pay as the FDLE continues their investigation.
  • The wait is finally over! Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, the latest addition to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal's Islands of Adventure is now open. The ride made its debut on Thursday, with some fans claiming they had to wait up to 10 hours just for a chance to ride it.  The 300 million dollar attraction certainly has a lot to cater to fans of the franchise. The ride takes you on a journey through the Forbidden Forest and allows you to encounter some creatures that are both seen and never been seen in the films. It also takes you backwards and forward with speeds up to 50 miles per hour and a free fall that feels like a 17 foot drop.  However, reactions on social media have been mixed:   Some people on social media say that the park offered free water and allowed people to save their place in line as they used the bathroom. Since Friday, the park has begun using a virtual queue in its official park app so goers wont have to wait in massive lines. They will simply be notified on their phone when its time to go back in line. However, during Friday's run, riders experienced mid-way stops and a nearly 3 hour maintenance delay.  Long wait times continue to stretch up to 8 hours throughout Father's Day weekend and are expected to remain so for a while. Park leaders warn people who attend that it may reach capacity before the end of the day, so its always best to arrive early to try and get a spot in line.

Washington Insider

  • With rules that make it difficult for lawmakers to steer taxpayer dollars into home state projects - that doesn't mean less money is being spent for such items - as instead billions of dollars in grants are being handed out by the Executive Branch each year, with federal bureaucrats taking the place of lawmakers in deciding how to dole out money approved by Congress for a variety of programs. A decade ago for example, Congress would have approved a highway bill filled with pages and pages of specific projects to be funded back in their states - but now, Congress funds billions in generic grants for the Department of Transportation, and then watches as the money is handed out by the feds. Experts say voters probably don't understand that what some would deride as 'pork barrel spending' just been shifted from the Legislative Branch to the Executive Branch. 'Presidents — and their appointees — engage in pork-barrel politicking (earmarking) in the same way Congress does,' wrote John Hudak of the Brookings Institute, who argues that budget 'earmarks' should be brought back in the House and Senate. Here are some examples of money sent out for highway and transit projects by the feds: Some lawmakers say they should be the ones deciding where that money goes - not a bureaucrat who maybe has never been to their state. 'We all should be able to stand behind the work that we do and advertise to our constituents and everybody around the country as to why this is a priority,' said Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK). 'If people think we are quote saving money,' Murkowski told reporters, 'they are fooling themselves, because those dollars are still going out the door.' But there are also Republicans who think Congress should just stay away from pork barrel spending. 'Earmarks grease the skids for bigger government,' said Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE). But regardless of complaints about how big the federal deficit might be, and how much is being spent overall, lawmakers of both parties trumpet the arrival of money for the folks back home - with federal agencies joining in those announcements as well. There are so many grants offered by the U.S. Government that a special website was set up to help people find out more information about what's available. Going through many of the grants, what one notices right away is the wide swath of money available for all sorts of matters: + Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) USA Cooperative Agreement Program + Invasive and Noxious Plant Management  + Forest and Woodlands Resource Management + Cultural Landscape Inventory for the Navajo Settlement  + Longitudinal Research on Delinquency and Crime  One grant available right now from the National Institutes of Health deals with research into dementia, 'to conduct new research on automobile technology for signaling early signs of cognitive impairment in older drivers.' In recent weeks, President Trump has made it clear that he's ready to use support for specific home-state spending matters to his electoral advantage, too. The focus on local spending is not new - almost ten years ago, I wrote about the proliferation of grants, and how the executive branch was handing out the pork. And it's still happening today.