On Friday, Senators Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Dianne Feinstein (D-California) released a joint statement saying that they and the rest of the Senate Judiciary Committee would be meeting privately with Donald Trump Jr. and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort to discuss the meeting they attended last summer with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya.
The Senators also noted in their statement that they would not be subpoenaing Trump Jr. and Manafort, despite previously saying that they would if the two men did not accept their invitations to testify before the committee.
‘Both Donald Trump, Jr. and Paul Manafort, through their attorneys, have agreed to negotiate to provide the committee with documents and be interviewed by committee members and staff prior to a public hearing.
‘Therefore, we will not issue subpoenas for them tonight requiring their presence at Wednesday’s hearing but reserve the right to do so in the future.’
Two days after this statement was released, during an interview with Senator Al Franken (D-Minnesota), CNN’s Jake Tapper revealed that, in addition to testifying behind closed doors, Trump Jr. and Manafort will also not be testifying under oath.
When asked for his opinion on the matter, Franken said that this was the first he’d heard of the two men not testifying under oath. He also said that it’s “not good enough” and that the testimonies “should be under oath.”
Franken went on to tell Tapper that he was disappointed with the deal Grassley and Feinstein had made with Trump Jr. and Manafort’s attorneys. He also referenced an interview Trump Jr. did with Sean Hannity earlier this month in which the president’s eldest son said he was willing to testify under oath.
‘If it’s not under oath, I am [disappointed]. I think that they need to be under oath and they need to release all the documents. I mean, he didn’t say he would testify publicly, but under oath he said, so he should definitely do that, and I have a lot of questions for him.’
Franken added that he specifically would like to ask Trump Jr. questions about whether or not he has had meetings with any other Russians.
Watch Franken’s remarks in the video below, available via YouTube. The comments about Trump Jr. and Manafort’s testimonies start around 3:30.
Featured image is a screenshot from the video.