President Donald Trump's Son In Law #jared kushner was searching for a direct line of communication to Russia's President #Vladimir Putin, according to the New York Times on Tuesday. This turned into a search that saw the husband of Ivanka Trump meeting with a Russian banker who had close ties with Russian intelligence, and whose companies were already sanctioned by the US under then-President Barack Obama.

As the tumult over the Trump and Russia investigation starts to hit – or rather slam – home, the director of communications at the White House resigned today, in a brisk Tuesday morning move that made national headlines.

The Russian banker in question

The banker that Jared Kushner met was called #Sergey Gorkov, and presently a handful of congressional and federal investigators are looking to establish what the two men wanted from each other. Why did they meet? What exactly was said? Gorkov is a close associate of the President of Russia, Vladimir Putin, yet has not acted in any way diplomatically for Russia, instead having a role as a businessman and company owner. Many questions have been raised about why he, in particular, met with Trump's son-in-law at such a crucial moment in the much-storied Trump transition.

The New York Times first published news of a meeting between Kushner and Gorkov in March, but at the time this Trump's administration didn’t explain what the meeting was actually about and the details were slim.

In that article however, Hope Hicks, was officially quoted as saying that the meeting resulted after the Russian ambassador to the US, #Sergey Kislyak, requested it. Sergey Kislyak is an interesting figure in political circles and has many contacts in the world of DC politics. He has been mentioned many times in this ongoing investigation into Russia-Trump ties....

Kislyak, incidentally, had met Kushner in December at Trump's New York headquarters to confer over the establishment of a #direct communications line with Russian high-ranking officials during the official Trump transition period.

Kushner's swift half-hour get-together with Gorkov, however, has since been the subject of much scrutiny from nany sectors of the political and news worlds.

According the New York Times, sources with knowledge of the meeting claim that the half-hour meeting could well have been part of a concerted effrort and push by Kushner to get a direct line with Putin happening.

In March, when #James Comey was still the director of the FBI, the Senate Intelligence Committee told the White House they were indeed planning to question and talk to Kushner about said meet-up he took with Gorkey.

How legal is it?

Attempting to get direct and secret communications with Russia's president Mr Putin so soon after a federal and high stakes election isn't illegal per se. Yet it's a very unusual set of actions that that administration would set up communications with a foreign country bypassing the safe and secure modes of official government communication.

In going about this in such a non-traditional way, many are wondering about the scale of the operation and whether it could turn into something illegal further down the track.

No disclosure from Kushner in January

In January of this year, Trump's son-in-law Kushner didn't write about any of his Russian contacts when he was officially applying for security clearance at the White House. Later down the track he made changes to that form to include a handful of meetings that he had taken, including pow-wows with the Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak and the banker Gorkov, but it still remains unclear whether he alerted investigators who were carrying out his background check about his desire to set up a back channel.

Of course, his aides have commented that his omissions from his January clearance form were indeed purely accidental and should have no bearing on this issue.

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