President Donald Trump’s eldest son had contacts with WikiLeaks during the 2016 presidential campaign, four congressional officials confirm. The communication happened while the anti-secrecy group was publishing hacked emails from officials from the Democratic Party.
Donald Trump Jr. had to hand over Twitter messages he exchanged with the group to the committees investigating the alleged Russian meddling in last year’s election. Trump Jr. used Twitter to publish several screen shots of his communication with WikiLeaks and his lawyer explained that they are selectively leaked.
According to The Atlantic, when WikiLeaks sent the first message to Trump Jr., he informed other senior officials, among which his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, that WikiLeaks had made a contact.
“Hiya, it’d be great if you guys could comment on/push this story,” WikiLeaks wrote on October 3, 2016 and attached a quote from then-Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton about wanting to “just drone” WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange. Trump Jr. responded an hour-and-a-half later.
“Already did that earlier today. It’s amazing what she can get away with,” he wrote. A week later, the group suggested Trump Jr. to tell his father to tweet a link to a the site wlsearch.tk, where users could search through hacked emails from Democrat officials.
“Hey Donald, great to see you and your dad talking about our publications. Strongly suggest your dad tweets this link if he mentions us. There’s many great stories the press are missing and we’re sure some of your follows [sic] will find it. Btw we just released Podesta Emails Part 4,” the group wrote. Trump Jr. did not respond, but President Donald Trump tweeted only 15 minutes later.
“Very little pick-up by the dishonest media of incredible information provided by WikiLeaks. So dishonest! Rigged system!” Trump wrote.
On October 14, 2016, Trump Jr. tweeted out the link and stopped responding to the messages. WikiLeaks wanted Trump Jr. to leak them one or more of his father’s tax returns, but he did not respond, thus the group wrote him again on election day and suggested that Trump should challenge the election results if he did not win. WikiLeaks continued writing after the election, and wanted Trump to suggest Julian Assange to be Australia’s Ambassador to the U.S., but Trump Jr. did not respond.