Donald Trump Jr. has agreed to appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee for a second round of questions, complying with a subpoena from Chairman Richard Burr (R-N.C.), who came under fire from fellow Republicans for demanding the testimony.
Trump Jr. struck the deal Tuesday to interview with the panel next month for between two and four hours. The committee had originally a set a 5 p.m. deadline on Monday for him to respond.
Questions about the Trump Tower project in Moscow and the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting between Trump campaign officials and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya are fair game, according to a source who was briefed on the deal.
Another source said the committee outlined 10 topics it hoped to discuss with Trump Jr., but the scope of the interview was negotiated down to six topics. The two sides also agreed this would be Trump Jr.’s last appearance before the committee.
The agreement ends a tense standoff that divided Republican lawmakers for the past week.
President Trump’s staunchest allies, including Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas), as well as House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), argued that calling Trump Jr. before the committee for another round of questioning was unnecessary after special counsel Robert Mueller failed to find evidence of conspiracy between Trump’s 2016 campaign and Russia.
The intense pressure raised questions about whether Burr would back down.
Burr’s committee has been negotiating with Trump Jr. since December to appear for a second time to answer questions. The first time, Trump Jr. only answered questions from committee staff.
Trump Jr. initially agreed to testify to the committee in March but then backed out and rescheduled his appearance for April, according to a briefing that Burr gave to Senate GOP colleagues last week.
When Trump Jr. again broke his agreement to appear before the committee last month, the Intelligence Committee warned he would face a subpoena.
The source said Trump Jr.’s lawyers initially declined to let their client appear for a second grilling after the Mueller report failed to find any criminal misconduct. But faced with extended civil litigation or a possible Senate vote on contempt, Trump Jr. on Tuesday agreed to appear for a second time.
Trump Jr. had been holding out as he sought restrictions on the amount of time he would spend before the committee and the scope of the questions he’d have to answer. Read more at The Hill