Russia investigation sheds new light on Jared Kushner's involvement with Moscow

White House senior advisor Jared Kushner attends a meeting in Beijing during President Trump's trip last month to Asia. (Thomas Peter / Pool)
David S. Cloud and Chris MegerianContact Reporters

The expanding federal investigation into Russian interference in last year’s election is shining new light on the central role played by one member of President Trump’s inner circle — his son-in-law and top advisor Jared Kushner — in reaching out to Moscow.

The latest disclosure — that even before Trump took office Kushner directed campaign foreign policy advisor Michael Flynn to try to persuade Russia to quash a United Nations resolution — is one example of numerous Kushner contacts with Moscow and meetings with Russian intermediaries now under scrutiny by investigators for special counsel Robert S. Mueller III.

Kushner, a 36-year-old former Manhattan real estate developer and Washington neophyte, may be key as Mueller pursues the still-unresolved mystery of whether Trump’s campaign had improper dealings with Russia, a charge that Kushner denies.

Revelations about Kushner’s Russia contacts have been dribbling out for months, forcing Kushner and other Trump aides who denied or downplayed them to repeatedly backtrack.

But with Flynn now cooperating with Mueller’s investigators, Kushner’s role in handling outreach to foreign governments for Trump is likely to get even more scrutiny from investigators. Flynn pleaded guilty Friday to lying to the FBI about his own Russia contacts.

Publicly Trump insists he is not worried, telling reporters Saturday there had been “absolutely no collusion” with Moscow, but adding, “We’ll see what happens.”