Tags: Donald Trump | Russia | Russia Probe | Trump Administration | senate | john kelly | white house

Report: Kelly Not Letting Senate Russia Advocate Near Trump

Image: Report: Kelly Not Letting Senate Russia Advocate Near Trump
White House chief of staff John Kelly (Evan Vucci/AP)

By    |   Tuesday, 03 October 2017 08:10 PM

White House chief of staff John Kelly will not let a Republican advocate of closer Russia ties get anywhere near President Donald Trump, Business Insider reported Tuesday.

According to the outlet, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., claims he wants to have a conversation with Trump that would involve clearing WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and the Russian government from allegations they meddled in the 2016 presidential election.

But Kelly and "a coalition of people in the White House" are blocking him from talking with the president, Rohrabacher told BI.

"The White House staff and other top people in the administration are trying to protect the president from himself," Rohrabacher told BI. "That's what they think, and in fact they are usurping his authority to make decisions — the important decisions — himself."

Rohrabacher last month called Kelly to seek a pardon for Assange in exchange for evidence that would clear the fugitive's name. Since then, third parties are talking to the president about the issue, he told BI.

Rohrabacher said he is using intermediaries to talk with Assange too.

"I have not spoken to [Assange] directly, but we're going through a period of time where a lot's getting done, one person removed in a lot of different ways," he told BI.

Also on Tuesday, Foreign Policy reported Rohrabacher met with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya during a trip to Moscow last year.

Veselnitskaya met with Donald Trump Jr., adviser Jared Kushner, and former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort at Trump Tower in 2016.

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White House chief of staff John Kelly will not let a Republican advocate of closer Russia ties get anywhere near President Donald Trump, Business Insider reported Tuesday.
senate, john kelly, white house, dana rohrabacher
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2017-10-03
Tuesday, 03 October 2017 08:10 PM
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