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Wnited States Senate CCONMITTEE ON THE JUDGIARY WASHINGTON, 0¢ 20510-6275 November 16, 2017 ‘VIA ELECTRONIC TRANSMISSION Robert S. Mueller IIL Special Counsel USS. Department of Justice Dear Special Counsel Mueller: “The Statement of Offense in U.S. v. George Papadopoulos, unsealed on October 0, 2017, states: On or about May 21, 2016, defendant PAPADOPOULOS: emailed another high-ranking Campaign official, with the subject line “Request from Russia to meet Mr. Trump.” The email included the May 4 MFA Email and added: “Russia has been eager to meet Mr. Trump for quite sometime and have ‘peen reaching out to me to discuss.”* Ina footnote, the Statement continues: ‘The government notes that the official forwarded defendant PAPADOPOULOS's email to another Campaign official (without including defendant PAPADOPOULOS) and stated: “Let{’Is discuss. We need someone to communicate that DT is not doing these trips. It should be someone low level in the campaign so as not to send any signal.”* TRatement of the Offense at 8, U.S. v. George Papadopoulos, 1:17-cr-00182-RDM (D.D.C. Oct. 5, 2017). 21d, Robert §. Mueller I November 16, 2017 age 2 of 4 ‘The Statement of Offense does not cite the rest of this email exchange. The Washington Post has reported that this particular “high-ranking Campaign official” is Paul Manafort, who forwarded the email to Rick Gates. In the absence of additional context, news outlets have seized on the fragment cited in the Statement’s footnote to suggest that a Trump “Campaign official suggested ‘Jow level’ staff should go to Russia.”4 ‘That suggestion may flow from one possible interpretation of the phrase “It should be someone low level in the campaign,” which is that the “someone low level” is supposed to make a trip to Russia instead of Trump. However, a second interpretation, which is more in keeping with the rest of the email exchange, is that the “someone low level” is simply the “someone to communicate” in the previous sentence, and indicates that Manafort simply wanted someone low level in the campaign to decline these kinds of invitations. Specifically, in the follow-up exchanges between Mr. Gates and Mr. Manafort, Mr, Gates responded to Mr. Manafort within minutes of his request to have someone “low level” communicate that Mr. Trump was “not doing these trips.” Mr. Gates writes, “Agree. What if I get our correspondence coordinator to do it. This is the person responding to all mail of non-importance. It would be a general letter.” Mr. Manafort responds again, “{G]ood.” Thus, the additional exchange does not appear to show the ‘Trump campaign was considering sending someone to Russia in place of its candidate. Rather, it appears to show that the Trump campaign considered the request of “non-importance” and simply sought to have lower-level staff, namely, the “correspondence coordinator,” communicate that Mr. Trump was not going on foreign trips. ‘The Statement of Offense also states: ‘After several weeks of further communications regarding a potential “off the record” meeting with Russian officials, on or about August 15, 2016, the Campaign Supervisor told defendant PAPADOPOULOS that “I would encourage you” and another foreign policy advisor to the Campaign to “make the tripl], ifit is feasible.”s ‘Rosalind S, Helderman, Who's who in the George Papadopoulos court documents, WASHINGTON Post (Nov. 2, 2017), https://www.washingtonpost.com polities /whos-who-in-the-george-papadopoulos-court- documents/2017/10/30/e1gt158c-bdbg-11¢7-9709- baabgaoahg81_story.html?utm_term=.6f4e9054b3b4. {Jeremy Herb, Evan Perez, Marshall Cohen, Pamela Brown, & Shimon Prokupecr, Hx-Trump campaign ‘adviser pleads guilty to making false statement, CNN (Oct. 31, 2017, 4:13 AM), http://www cna com/2017/10/30/polites/paul-manafort-russia-investigation-surrender/ index lm Statement of the Offense at 9, U.S. v, George Papadopoulos, 1:17-cr-00182-RDM (D-D.C. Oct, 5, 2017). Robert S, Mueller IT ‘November 16, 2017 Page 3 of 4 ‘This citation similarly has been reported as evidence that the campaign was “encourage{ing]” campaign personnel to meet with Russians.6 The Campaign Supervisor cited in the Statement has been identified as Sam Clovis.” ‘Additional context for this exchange clarifies that Papadopoulos inquired about Dr. Clovis joining him for multiple conversations with representatives from multiple foreign governments, including “the UK, Greek, Italian and even Russian government[s}.” Dr. Clovis declined the invitation. Additional exchanges also ‘demonstrate that when Dr. Clovis was made aware of Papadopoulos’ efforts to arrange meetings with Russian officials, he either questioned them or rejected them. For example, the Statement of Offense also described an email by Papadopoulos to Dr. Clovis and “several members of the Campaign's foreign policy team” about his meeting with “the Female Russian National . . . and the Russian Ambassador in London” about “‘arrang[ing] a meeting between us and the Russian leadership to discuss U.S. Russia ties under President Trump.”* The Statement notes that Dr. Clovis “responded that he would ‘work it through the campaign,’ but that no commitments should be made at that point” and “added: ‘Great work.” ‘Again, however, that is not all he wrote. Dr. Clovis also went on to say: “My thought is that we probably should not go forward with any meetings with the Russians until we have had occasion to sit with our NATO allies, especially France, Germany and Great Britain. We need to reassure our allies that we are not going to advance anything with Russia until we have everyone on the same page.” Subsequently, Dr. Clovis expressed agreement with another campaign adviser who was copied on these exchanges and who expressed concerns. Specifically, Clovis agreed with a statement that sanction language “limits interaction with Russia/Russians” and that “the Logan ‘Act applies to [restrict] any meetings with foreign government officials.” Tunderstand that Statements of Offense and charging documents should be carefully crafted and that legitimate investigative and prosecutorial needs limit what information a prosecutor might disclose at various stages in an investigation or judicial process, However, in this matter, the public deserves to have the full context for the 6 Brianne Pfannenstiel, Reports: Iowan Sam Clovis encouraged Papadopoulos’ Russia meeting, DES Moines Recisrer (Oct. g1, 2017, 12:53 PM), hittp://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/nevs/polities/2017/10/31/sam-clovis-encouraged- papadopoulos-russia-meeting/817054001/. 7 See, e.g., Rosalind S. Helderman & Tom Hamburger, Top campaign officials knew of Trump advisers ‘outreach to Russia, WASHINGTON Post (Oct. 30, 2017), https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-campaign-ndviser-pleaded-guilty-to-lying-about- russian-contacts/2017/10/30/d525¢712-bd7d-1167-9709- ‘bdabsaoabg81_story.html?utm_term=.2498306669f0. 8 — of the Offense, supra note 1 at 4. od.