Former Trump adviser’s guilty plea could rattle White House
WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump has dismissed George Papadopoulos as a “liar” and a mere campaign volunteer. But newly unsealed court papers outline the former adviser’s frequent contacts with senior officials and with foreign nationals who promised access to the highest levels of the Russian government.
They also hint at more headaches for the White House and former campaign officials. Papadopoulos is now cooperating with special counsel Robert Mueller as he investigates possible coordination between Russia and Trump’s 2016 White House campaign.
President Donald Trump listens during a meeting on tax policy with business leaders in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2017, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
In this photo from President Donald Trump’s Twitter account, George Papadopoulos, third from left, sits at a table with then-candidate Trump and others at what is labeled at a national security meeting in Washington that was posted on March 31, 2016. Papadopoulos, a former Trump campaign aide belittled by the White House as a low-level volunteer was thrust on Oct. 30, 2017, to the center of special counsel Robert Muellerâ€™s investigation, providing evidence in the first criminal case that connects Trumpâ€™s team and intermediaries for Russia seeking to interfere in the campaign. (Donald Trump’s Twitter account via AP)
FILE – In this Aug. 25, 2016, file photo, Sam Clovis speaks during a news conference as then-Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, left, watches before a campaign rally in Dubuque, Iowa. George Papadopoulos, a former Trump campaign aide belittled by the White House as a low-level volunteer was thrust on Oct. 30, 2017, into the center of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential campaign. Papadopoulos communicated most with then-Trump campaign adviser Clovis and campaign chairman Paul Manafort according to an official with the foreign policy advisory council. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
A court artist drawing shows President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, center standing and Manafort’s business associate, Rick Gates, in federal court in Washington, Monday, Oct. 30, 2017, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Deborah A. Robinson. Seated at front left is Manafort’s attorney Kevin Downing. Manafort and Gates have pleaded not guilty following their arrest on charges related to conspiracy against the United States and other felonies. The charges are the first from the special counsel investigating possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia. (Dana Verkouteren via AP)
Rick Gates, right, leaves federal court in Washington, Monday, Oct. 30, 2017. Paul Manafort, President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman, and Manafort’s business associate Gates pleaded not guilty to felony charges of conspiracy against the United States and other counts. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., speaks next to a poster depicting an online ad that attempted to suppress voters as Facebook’s General Counsel Colin Stretch, Twitter’s Acting General Counsel Sean Edgett, and Google’s Law Enforcement and Information Security Director Richard Salgado, testifies before a Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2017, on more signs from tech companies of Russian election activity. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
FILE – In this July 25, 2016, file photo, John Podesta, Clinton campaign chairman, speaks during the first day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. The indictment that alleges covert foreign lobbying by two former Trump campaign officials is casting shadows on three powerful Washington lobbying and legal firms, with Democratic as well as Republican ties, broadening the stakes of the Russia investigation to both parties and drawing in Tony Podesta, the brother of Hillary Clintonâ€™s campaign chairman. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)