The media is abuzz with new information indicating that Donald Trump Jr. may have sought out help from Russia for his father's presidential campaign last year.
It was recently revealed in a report published by the New York Times that last summer Trump Jr. met with a Russian attorney, purportedly to gain information meant to ruin then Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.
The report has sparked renewed calls for an investigation into the connections President Donald Trump may have had with Russia both before and after the election.
Here are five important things to know about the most recent stage of the ongoing controversy, including speculation as to whether Trump Jr. broke the law and what ties Democrats may have to the Russian attorney.
1. Trump Jr. Probably Didn't Break Any Laws
Despite the controversial nature of the meeting that Trump, Jr. had with Russian attorney Natalia Veselnitskaya, this meeting likely did not violate any laws.
David French, a conservative writer and attorney who is a sometime critic of President Trump, pointed out in a National Review piece that the "word 'collusion' doesn't have precise legal meaning."
"In other words, to claim that Trump officials colluded with Russians is not the same thing as claiming that they violated the law," wrote French.
"As with many political operations, including dealings with foreign governments, their actions can be unsavory without being illegal. Indeed, that seems to be the case here."
Despite likely being legal, French stressed that "to say that it (so far) appears that Donald Jr. didn't break the law isn't to defend his actions."
"To repeat, it now looks as if the senior campaign team of a major-party presidential candidate intended to meet with an official representative of a hostile foreign power to facilitate that foreign power's attempt to influence an American election," continued French.
"Russian collusion claims are no longer the exclusive province of tinfoil-hat conspiracy theorists. No American — Democrat or Republican — should defend the expressed intent of this meeting."
2. Trump Jr. Was Told He Was Meeting With Russian Operative
According to the released transcripts of the email exchange that led to the meeting last summer, Trump, Jr. was led to believe he was getting sensitive information from the Russian government.
Rob Goldstone, the man who helped to set up the meeting, explained in an email to Trump, Jr. that he was to meet the "Crown prosecutor of Russia," who had "some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia and would be very useful to your father."
"This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government's support for Mr. Trump," emailed Goldstone.
"I can also send this info to your father via Rhona, but it is ultra sensitive so wanted to send to you first."
Trump Jr. replied, in part, "if it's what you say, I love it, especially later in the summer." (Commas added for clarity.)
3. Russian Lawyer, Trump Jr. Both Deny Exchanging Info on Hillary Clinton at Meeting
Both the Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, and Trump Jr. deny that any information about Clinton was given at their in-person meeting.
"I never had any damaging or sensitive information about Hillary Clinton. It was never my intention to have that," said Veselnitskaya to NBC News.
"It is quite possible that maybe they were longing for such an information. They wanted it so badly that they could only hear the thought that they wanted."
"For me this was opposition research," said Trump Jr. to Sean Hannity of Fox News. "I think I wanted to hear it out. But really it went nowhere and it was apparent that wasn't what the meeting was about."
4. Russian Lawyer Has Ties to Anti-Trump Democrat Group
Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Russian lawyer who met with Trump Jr. last year, has a connection to a group that garnered headlines for releasing various highly disputed anti-Trump claims via a dossier.
Fusion GPS, a research group that has a history of supporting candidates opposed to Trump, previously worked with Veselnitskaya on a legal case.
Fusion GPS has refused to cooperate in a Senate Judiciary investigation into the anti-Trump dossier. It was also hired by Planned Parenthood to write a report aimed at discrediting an undercover investigation into Planned Parenthood's selling of aborted baby parts.
Trump spokesman Mark Corallo said in a statement that Fusion GPS' link to the Russian attorney should bring to question her original purpose with the meeting.
"Specifically, we have learned that the person who sought the meeting is associated with Fusion GPS, a firm which according to public reports, was retained by Democratic operatives to develop opposition research on the president and which commissioned the phony Steele dossier," stated Corallo.
For their part, Fusion GPS told The Washington Post in a statement that they "learned about this meeting from news reports and had no prior knowledge of it," adding that any "claim that Fusion GPS arranged or facilitated this meeting in any way is false."
5. Trump Jr. Released the Email Chain on Social Media
In response to the New York Times' report on the meeting Trump Jr. had last summer, the eldest son of the president released the email chain on his Twitter account. The Twitter post came after he heard that NYT was going to release the same emails.
Trump Jr. included a statement along with the posted emails, explaining that he wanted to be "totally transparent" when it came to the email correspondence he had with Goldstone.
"The information they suggested they had about Hillary Clinton I thought was Political Opposition Research," stated Trump Jr. on his Twitter handle.
"And, as we have said, she had no information to provide and wanted to talk about adoption policy and the Magnitsky Act. To put this in context, this occurred before the current Russian fever was in vogue."