Trump lashes out at leaks, considers staff upheaval

While overseas, Mr Trump's longtime lawyer, Marc Kasowitz, joined a still-forming legal team to help the president shoulder the intensifying investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election and his associates' potential involvement.

Saturday, the Post reported some White House aides have engaged in discussions over whether Kushner should take a leave of absence as scandals engulf the White House.

"Jared is doing a great job for the country", he said. "I have total confidence in him", he said in the statement to the New York Times. He is respected by virtually everyone and is working on programs that will save our country billions of dollars. "He just realizes that this is going to be a part of his presidency, and he's going to allocate additional resources to make sure that it doesn't derail him from the rest of the important work that he's trying to do".

Mr. Trump's attacks on the media come as his campaign team faces increased scrutiny over its contacts with Russian Federation.

Other major issues await Trump at home.

The news website Politico called Kushner the White House's " lead distraction" following what is being seen as Trump's mostly successful first foreign trip, which featured a stopover in Israel.

It is claimed Mr Kushner discussed setting up a back channel with the Russian ambassador in December.

Donald Trump has come out in support of his son-in-law Jared Kushner, following reports the aide tried to set up a secret communication line with Moscow.

He said that Kushner's contacts with the Russians, if true, present "a real problem" in whether President Trump's son-in-law should be trusted.

Even when authorized, however, top officials in the Trump White House frequently request anonymity to brief reporters "on background", meaning their names will not be disclosed.

Kelly, the homeland security secretary, carried the same message on Sunday.

"It's both normal in my opinion and acceptable", he told ABC News on Sunday. "Any way that you can communicate with people, particularly organisations that are maybe not particularly friendly to us, is a good thing".

Trump also said that "many of the leaks coming out of the White House are fabricated lies".

Sen. Lindsey Graham, a Republican from SC, said on CNN's "State of the Union" that he was skeptical of the back-channel story because he did not trust Russian officials.

The New York Times and Washington Post said he wanted to use Russian facilities to avoid U.S. interception of discussions with Moscow.

"You have to ask, well, who are they hiding the conversations from?"

Schiff said he expected Kushner, who serves as an unpaid adviser to Trump, to appear before his committee and suggested his security clearance be reviewed.

The main source of tension however, the Times reported citing two people with knowledge of the interaction, was a video earlier this month showing Kushner's sister, Nicole Meyer, courting wealthy Chinese investors to buy stakes in real estate through a controversial government program that offers U.S. residency in exchange for investment.

Republican US senator Lindsey Graham told CNN he doubted the Kushner reports were accurate.

Kushner would speak for himself, Corker said he'd been reassured, "when the time is right".

"My dashboard warning light was clearly on", Clapper said.

The pair are living in a $7.4 million (US $5.5 million) rental property in Kalorama, giving them the freedom to return to New York City if things don't improve in the latter half of the year.

  • Zachary Reyes