Kushner Used Private Email To Conduct Official Business, House Committee Says

Cummings: Ivanka Trump not preserving all official email

Democrats alleged this week that White House aide Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, are breaking US law by failing to preserve all of official government emails and other electronic communications.

Jared Kushner's attorney told the House Committee on Oversight and Reform that Kushner uses private messaging applications and personal email to communicate about official White House matters, the committee wrote in a letter to White House Counsel Pat Cipollone on Thursday.

"As you know, the White House has not produced a single piece of paper to the Committee in the 116th Congress - in this or any other investigation", Cummings wrote.

Earlier this month, three House Democrats requested that the White House and State Department turn over detailed information about any communications between Trump and Putin.

Cummings described the December 19 discussion with Kushner lawyer Abbe Lowell in a letter to the White House counsel in which he requested information about the use of such messaging apps and other communications by White House personnel.

According to Cummings, when pressed how Kushner was backing up his communications in order to assure that he wasn't violating the Presidential Records Act, Lowell responded that Kushner took "screenshots" and forwarded them to his official White House email account or to the National Security Council.

"Our Committees are in receipt of the White House Counsel's letter, which continues a troubling pattern by the Trump Administration of rejecting legitimate and necessary congressional oversight with no regard for precedent or the constitution", the chairmen said.

The request for information about communications with Putin followed the House Judiciary Committee's demand for documents from a who's who of Trump's circle, targeting 81 people, government agencies and other groups in an investigation of possible obstruction of justice or abuse of power.

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Cummings said Lowell told him the first daughter continues to use her personal email account for official communication.

The Presidential Records Act prohibits senior White House officials from creating or sending a record "using a non-official electronic message account".

He also noted that "there was never classified information transmitted" using her private email account.

Cummings said that Trump's lawyer, Abbe Lowell, told the committee that Trump doesn't preserve official emails she receives in her personal account if she doesn't respond to them.

He said the document was related to efforts by McFarland and other White House officials to transfer sensitive USA nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia "in coordination with Tom Barrack, a personal friend of President Trump and the chairman of President Trump's inaugural committee".

The chairman said another document appeared to show that Mr Bannon received documents "pitching the plan from Mr Barrack through his personal e-mail account", at a time Mr Bannon was at the White House and working on broader Middle East policy. "As with all properly authorized oversight requests, the White House will review the letter and will provide a reasonable response in due course", Groves added.

Cipollone would add that the congressmen cited "no legal authority for the proposition that another branch of the government can force the President to disclose diplomatic communications with foreign leaders or that supports forcing disclosure of the confidential internal deliberations of the President's national security advisors".

"Congress can not require the president to disclose confidential communications with foreign leaders".

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