While the Mueller report may be complete, that doesn’t mean the cloud around President Donald Trump and his cronies is going away any time soon.
A former Republican communications consultant that worked as a legal spokesman in the Trump White House during the early days of the administration has publicly accused for White House Communications Director Hope Hicks of lying to Special Counsel Mueller about the infamous June 9 Trump Tower meeting between Donald Trump Jr., campaign manager Paul Manafort, and Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner and a Kremlin-linked Russian lawyer.
Mark Corallo spoke with ABC News’ the Investigation podcast about the way that the White House team reacted to the news of the highly suspicious meeting hitting the airwaves and made it clear that he believes Hope Hicks lied to the Special Counsel about it — and that he told Mueller everything.
After the news of the Trump Tower story broke, Corallo earned the ire of the rest of the Trump team for recognizing and trying to point out the highly unethical and very serious consequences of the fact that the President and his team wrote the official response to the media from Air Force One:
“And then my phone rings and it’s Hope Hicks. So, she just started laying into me. And, then she admitted that yes, they had crafted this statement on Air Force One and that they’d handled it. You know, she said, I had the New York Times handled and I’m going – you did? You work in the White House. This is a private matter. This is not the president’s conduct of his office. This is matters to do with him as a private citizen, really, not even him.
And I just pointed out that the statement that they put out on Air Force One or from Air Force One was inaccurate. That this was not going to go away. And because it was inaccurate, an inaccurate statement – it was only going to inflame the story over the next few days and eventually the New York Times and every other, you know, media outlet was going to get the truth and then they were going to look, well, the way they did.
Yeah and so I pointed out that the statement was inaccurate and that there were documents, that I understood there were documents that would prove that. Hope Hicks replied to me when I, when I said look there are you know there are documents. She said, well nobody’s ever going to see those documents. Which you know made my throat dry up immediately.
A truly breathtaking peek behind the curtain of the way that Trump and his cronies handle their business. It’s just stunning to see the utter disregard for any kind of concern for ethical or legal considerations from the Trump team when it came to their efforts to cover up the incredibly suspicious meeting at which the President’s son appeared to directly ask a Russian national for “dirt” on Hillary Clinton.
Interviewer Matt Mosk then asked him specifically if he had discussed this incident with the Special Counsel, and Corallo was unequivocal in his answer — and said that Mueller told him Hicks had given a very different version of events in her interview:
“Yeah. Oh absolutely. They wanted to know, and they asked me, and they said well you know Miss Hicks says that that didn’t happen. And they asked me how sure I was, and I said 100 percent. You know, I mean look – this was, you know, again I’ve used the word reckless over and over again. It was reckless.”
If that’s true, that means Hope Hicks likely lied to the Special Counsel, which could open up a whole new can of worms for her — and if she lied to the Special Counsel about what happened that day on Air Force One, it’s quite likely that more members of the Trump team are guilty of doing this as well.
In any case, his interview makes it clear that the entire Trump team has guilt written all over them and behaved as suspiciously as they possibly could, and we need to see the full Mueller Report before we can move on to anything else.