What’s Up With Trump Jr’s Lawyer’s Statement?

[ed.note: I’m leaving this post intact. But the core factual premise was based on CNN reporting that turned out to be wrong. Specifically, the email was not September 4th but September 14th. A mere ten days. But it makes a huge difference since it meant this came after a major Wikileaks email dump. Thus, Futerfas’s statement, rather than being inexplicable did in fact make sense. And these weren’t secret documents but public ones. As I said, I’ll leave this as originally written. Because there’s no rewriting it. It now seems far more likely that the email was simply a supporter flagging attention to a Wikileaks dump that was in fact public.]

We’re currently looking into various aspects of this encryption key email to Donald Trump Jr. which I discussed below. Here’s one part we’re looking into that I wanted to flag. Trump Jr.’s lawyer Alan Futerfas released a statement in which he said this: “We understand that the media reported 12 hours prior to this email that the DNC emails had been hacked or leaked. We do not know who Mike Erickson is. We have no idea who he is. We never responded to the email.”

This appears to be an attempt to suggest that everyone was talking about the hack at the time so it makes sense that a prankster might have sent an email. And a prank email means nothing.

But whatever the interpretation, there’s a big problem with this statement: it’s not true. We’ve looked to see what if anything might have been reported in the news on September 3rd or 4th. But the news that the DNC had been hacked was in June. The release of the actual hacked DNC emails was at the end of July. So neither of those things were reported in the hours just before this email was received. Maybe there’s some news Futerfas is referring to that I’m not aware of. But on its face, this looks a lot like a panicked response that is actually nonsense.