Donald Trump, Jr. said to congressional investigators that he accepted the meeting with a Russian lawyer promising “dirt” on Hillary Clinton because he wanted to assess Clinton’s her fitness for office, the Times reported. In prepared testimony and in a five-hour interview with Senate Judiciary Committee staffers in which Senators were present but not allowed to ask questions, Trump Jr. answered inquiries about the June 2016 meeting with Natalia Veselnitskaya. The committee’s leaders have called on Trump Jr. to testify publicly about the meeting. Politico reportedthat government officials who reviewed Paul Manafort’s notes from the Veselnitskaya meeting said the notes do not appear damaging to the Trump family. Senate officials have had the notes in their possession, and officials who reviewed the notes said they are about the Magnitsky Act, not compromising information about Clinton. A Manafort spokesperson declined to comment. FBI Director Christopher Wray said he has detected no evidence of interference in the Russia investigation since taking over as FBI director last month, the Hill reported.
A New York Times investigation documented how Russia created social media bot networks to influence the 2016 election. The joint effort from the New York Times and the cybersecurity company FireEye found that thousands of fake social media profiles acted in concert to spread disinformation about Hillary Clinton. FireEye researchers linked hundreds of Twitter accounts to personas such as DCLeaks and Guccifer 2.0 which they concluded were linked to Russian hacking groups, including the group responsible for the DNC hack.