Jared Kushner, senior advisor and son-in-law to President Donald Trump, told TIME magazine senior White House correspondent Brian Bennett at the 2019 TIME 100 Summit that the Mueller report was worse for the country than Russia's "Facebook ads" -- and got shut down after he took it a step too far, claiming the president's 2016 campaign was blind to the Kremlin's efforts to hack the election.
"We ran a very untraditional campaign, and we had a lot of outsiders coming in," Kushner said by way of excusing the Trump campaign's cozying up to a foreign adversary. "In the beginning we couldn't get a lot of the people from Washington to work with the campaign."
"You look at what Russia did, buying some Facebook ads to try to sow dissent, and do it, and it's a terrible thing," Kushner went on. "I think the investigations and all of the speculation that's happened for the last two years has had a much harsher impact on our democracy than a couple Facebook ads."
"It was a lot more than a few Facebook ads," protested Bennett. "There were Russian operatives organizing real events during the campaign. It had a real world impact on their social media campaign."
"Not only that, but Russia was actively hacking and stealing documents, that they then systematically released at certain key points during the campaign," Bennett continued. "One of the biggest things that doesn't sit well with the public is why didn't the Trump campaign openly say 'Russia, we don't need your help, we don't want your help. please stop?'"
"First of all, in the campaign we didn't know that Russia was doing what they were doing," Kushner said but Bennett slapped him down.
"By October 6th the U.S intelligence services did make the assessment public," Bennett said. "That Russia was involved in a social media campaign to influence the election."
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