Former Trump aide Sam Nunberg said he will ignore a subpoena to appear before a federal grand jury investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Nunberg has made numerous accusations against the U.S. President Donald Trump saying that Trump both knew about the infamous Don Jr. Trump Tower meeting and that Mueller special counsel Robert Mueller has damaging evidence on Trump.
Nunberg, who was fired by the Trump campaign in the summer of 2015 over racist Facebook posts, told The Washington Post on Monday that he was asked to appear Friday before the grand jury. According to the newspaper, he also sent an email list from the office of Mueller requesting his appearance.
Nunberg appeared on CNN with Erin Burnett for a thirty-minute interview, in which at some point Burnett exlaimed, "I smell alcohol on your breath," adding that "I know this is awkward," but that Nunberg has been plagued by rumours of alcohol and drug abust.
Also in a statement to CNN’s Jake Tapper may also raise eyebrows. Nunberg told Tapper that the president had been aware of a June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower, set up by Donald Trump Jr., on the premise that Kremlin intermediaries would provide them with derogatory information on Hillary Clinton.
“Trump talked about it the week before. And I don’t know why he did this. All he had to say was, ‘Yeah, we met with the Russians. The Russians offered us something and we thought they had something and that was it.’ I don’t know why he went around trying to hide. He shouldn’t have,” Nunberg told Tapper.
Nunberg said he would provide neither testimony nor documents.
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“Let him arrest me,” Nunberg told The Washington Post in an interview. “Mr. Mueller should understand I am not going in on Friday.”
He added: “The Russians and Trump did not collude. Putin is too smart to collude with Donald Trump.”
It is not known what actions Mueller would take if Nunberg, who is Jewish, follows through on his vow not to appear.
“Donald Trump won this election on his own,” Nunberg told The Post. “He campaigned his ass off. And there is nobody who hates him more than me.”
Later Monday, Nunberg in an interview on MSNBC again said he would not appear before the grand jury. He also suggested that Mueller may have evidence against Trump.
“I think they may,” Nunberg said, according to The Washington Post. “I think that he may have done something during the election.”
In response, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters, “There was no collusion with the Trump campaign.”
Nunberg was a consultant to the Trump campaign before he was dismissed for his racist and incendiary posts, which included calling the daughter of the Rev. Al Sharpton’s daughter “N—!” The posts had been made in 2007, before he went to work for Trump.
In a 2017 interview with Newsmax, Nunberg said his grandfather Simon survived Auschwitz but that the rest of Simon’s family, including his parents, were murdered. Asked where he might move if he had to live in another country, Nunberg replied, “Easy question — the Jewish State of Israel.”