Senior Democratic lawmakers called on Wednesday for further investigation into a revelation that in 2016 Donald Trump's then-presidential election campaign chairman gave polling data to a man USA prosecutors have linked to Russian intelligence.
There is no evidence that Trump was aware that Manafort was sharing the data with Kilimnik, who was described by Mueller in court documents a year ago as having "ties to a Russian intelligence service".
When a reporter asked about Manafort, Trump replied: "No, I didn't know anything about it".
Manafort earned millions of dollars doing political consulting work for Ukraine and received multiple wire transfers from Lyovochkin and Akhmetov, special counsel Robert Mueller's team said during Manafort's trial last summer. Trump did not elaborate and turned to another reporter with a question on a different topic. He referred Reuters to Schiff's statement that lawmakers on the committee "need to find out" about Manafort's interaction with Kilimnik on polling data. Manafort, who sat in a wheelchair during a court hearing in October, also has severe gout, his lawyers said.
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That information was included in a court filing this week that appeared to inadvertently include details not meant to be made public and indicates a pathway by which the Russians could have had access to Trump campaign data. Manafort denied that he was trying to hide the meetings he had with Kilimnik, who has also been charged in Mueller's wide-ranging investigation, and instead had just forgotten about them until he'd been presented evidence to refresh his memory.
But US prosecutors have since accused Manafort of lying to investigators, complicating his efforts to get a reduced sentence in exchange for his cooperation.
Manafort is scheduled to be sentenced February 8 by U.S. District Court Judge T.S. Ellis III in Northern Virginia for his conviction on eight felony counts of bank and tax fraud.