By Tessa Berenson
July 14, 2017

President Trump defended his son’s encounter with a Russian lawyer in an off-the-record conversation with reporters Wednesday, saying, “In a world of politics, most people are going to take that meeting.”

The interview, which was retroactively put on the record by the White House, took place Wednesday on Air Force One en route to France. Below, in an excerpt transcribed and shared by the White House, is what Trump said about his son Donald Jr.’s email correspondence and meeting with a Russian lawyer to obtain information about Hillary Clinton during the campaign.

You can read the rest of the conversation here.

Write to Tessa Berenson at


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