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But the California Republican said he does not know whether he is the U.S. congressman referenced in the indictment of Russian gun-rights activist Maria Butina, according to Politico.
Rohrabacher told Politico that he was part of the congressional delegation that visited Russia in August 2015, but he played down the significance of a meeting with Butina, saying he was joined by another U.S. lawmaker along with other Americans.
"I know I had dinner with [Butina] along with another member, along with a visiting delegation to Russia," Rohrabacher told Politico. "Is that something we should be worried about?"
The Daily Beast reported Tuesday that an aide to Rohrabacher had confirmed that he was the lawmaker mentioned in the indictment, but insisted that the meeting was "of no consequence."
"All he could recall about Ms. Butina is that she was an aide to Torshin who arranged a [breakfast] meeting and was of no consequence other than that," the aide, Ken Grubbs, told The Daily Beast.
In an interview with The Daily Beast on Monday night, Giuliani appeared to blame the maelstrom he kicked up on inquisitive New York Times reporters who he suggested had compelled him to proactively spin a potentially damaging story that may or may not actually be real. Several veterans of the Trump campaign, like much of the viewing public, were left befuddled.
“You get to the other meeting he says he was at, that the president wasn’t at…with Donald [Trump] Jr., Jared [Kushner], [Paul] Manafort…[Rick] Gates and one other person. Cohen also now says that—he says too much—that two days before he was participating in a meeting with roughly the same group of people—but not the president, definitely not the president—in which they were talking about the strategy of the meeting with the Russians,” Giuliani continued. “The people in that meeting deny it, the people who we’ve been able to interview. The people we’ve not been able to interview have never said that about that meeting.”
To numerous observers, this was incredibly confusing and potentially damaging. There had never been reports of a planning meeting. And the Trump team had long insisted that the actual meeting itself was so innocent and irrelevant as to barely even register in their memories—which likely would not have been the case if they had been planning for it.
Yes, Giuliani had denied it took place. But why was he even talking about it in the first place?
In subsequent interviews on Monday, the president’s lawyer claimed that, in fact, he was only speaking off of as-yet unverified details from reporters who had contacted Team Trump to ask about the planning meeting.
We're going to find out that there was a pre-meeting with top Trump people regarding the infamous attempted collusion meeting in Trump tower, if I'm understanding things correctly. I'm guessing the implication here is if the campaign cared enough to have a meeting about the meeting it increases the chances Trump knew ahead of time. I also believe the timing lays it around when Trump claimed at rally he'd be dumping some dirt on Hillary soon.
Such a meeting is plausible. With a tight election, an offer of dirt on your opponent would be hard to ignore. But ... it involves meeting with reps of a foreign power. A staff meeting to discuss going would be the sane response.
Denying something happened, that no one had heard of before. Hmmm - fun times ahead.
The Justice Department special counsel has evidence that Donald Trump’s personal lawyer and confidant, Michael Cohen, secretly made a late-summer trip to Prague during the 2016 presidential campaign, according to two sources familiar with the matter.
Confirmation of the trip would lend credence to a retired British spy’s report that Cohen strategized there with a powerful Kremlin figure about Russian meddling in the U.S. election.
It’s unclear whether Mueller’s investigators also have evidence that Cohen actually met with a prominent Russian – purportedly Konstantin Kosachev, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin — in the Czech capital. Kosachev, who chairs the Foreign Affairs Committee of a body of the Russian legislature, the Federation Council, also has denied visiting Prague during 2016. Earlier this month, Kosachev was among 24 high-profile Russians hit with stiff U.S. sanctions in retaliation for Russia’s meddling.
But investigators have traced evidence that Cohen entered the Czech Republic through Germany, apparently during August or early September of 2016 as the ex-spy reported, said the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is confidential. He wouldn’t have needed a passport for such a trip, because both countries are in the so-called Schengen Area in which 26 nations operate with open borders. The disclosure still left a puzzle: The sources did not say whether Cohen took a commercial flight or private jet to Europe, and gave no explanation as to why no record of such a trip has surfaced.
Ms. Butina’s efforts to deal in Russian jet fuel, detailed in hundreds of pages of previously unreported emails, were notable not just for their whiff of foreign intrigue but for whom they involved: David Keene, a former president of the National Rifle Association and a prominent leader of the conservative movement, who has advised Republican candidates from Ronald Reagan to Mitt Romney. They also involved Mr. Keene’s wife, Donna, a well-connected Washington lobbyist, and Ms. Butina’s boyfriend, Paul Erickson, who ran Patrick J. Buchanan’s 1992 presidential campaign and who moved in rarefied conservative circles despite allegations of fraud in three states.
The head of the NRA was helping Butina get jet fuel?
But one of his tactics, Mueller reveals, was to get what Manafort described “in a contemporaneous communication [as] ‘[O]bama jews’” to pressure the Obama administration in October 2012.
The scheme was to tie Tymoshenko to antisemitism through association. Manafort got “a senior Israeli government official to issue a written statement publicizing this story.” That’s a reference to a statement from then-Israeli foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman, a hardliner who is now defense minister, as noted by journalist Noga Tarnopolsky. The story was published by Ben Shapiro at Breitbart, as first reported by The Guardian’s Luke Harding. Manafort, “with secret advance knowledge of that Israeli statement,” bragged as he shopped it around the U.S., “I have someone pushing it on the NY Post. Bada bing bada boom.”
President Donald Trump’s former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, has participated over the last month in multiple interview sessions lasting for hours with investigators from the office of special counsel, Robert Mueller, sources tell ABC News.
Cohen’s participation in the meetings has been voluntary -- without any guarantee of leniency from prosecutors, according to several people familiar with the situation.
ABC News has also learned that Cohen is also cooperating with a separate probe by New York state authorities into the inner workings of the Trump family charity and the Trump Organization, where Cohen served as an executive vice president and special counsel to Trump for 10 years.
A former top White House official has revised her statement to investigators about a key event in the probe of Russian interference in the 2016 election, after her initial claim was contradicted by the guilty plea of former national security adviser Michael Flynn, according to people familiar with the matter.
K.T. McFarland, who briefly served as Flynn’s deputy, has now said that he may have been referring to sanctions when they spoke in late December 2016 after Flynn’s calls with Russia’s ambassador to the United States, these people said.
When FBI agents first visited her at her Long Island home in the summer of 2017, McFarland denied ever talking to Flynn about any discussion of sanctions between him and the ambassador, Sergey Kislyak, in December 2016 during the presidential transition.
For a time, investigators saw her answers as “inconsistent,” putting her in legal peril as the FBI tried to determine if she had lied to them.
Not long after Flynn’s plea, McFarland was questioned by investigators again about her conversations with Flynn, and she walked back her previous denial that sanctions were discussed, saying a general statement Flynn had made to her that things were going to be okay could have been a reference to sanctions, these people said.
I had to read the story, to figure out why they're interested in Jerome Corsi. The Russians hacked the DNC, then passed the spoils to Wikileaks. WikiLeaks published the emails as newsworthy. So far, nobody guilty except the Russian hackers.
However, members of the Trump campaign seem to have known what would be published, before it was. If they had inside knowledge of the hack, then we're talking possible collusion in the context of fixing an election.
Corsi and/or Stone may have been the go-between with the Russians and/or Assange.
If Trump & Co had contact with the Russians about the hack, before WikeLeaks published, then someone's headed for prison.
If Trump & Co got tipped off early by WikiLeaks, then I don't see a problem for the campaign. But WikiLeaks wouldn't look good.
WL is a news organization, and journalists often check with sources before publication. To see if the leak is legit. But they should have either checked with the DNC, or with both campaigns. Tipping off the Trump campaign only, becomes partisan behavior.
Fun fact, it looks like Corsi set-up his own demise (assuming he wasn't knowingly lying)
Mueller's team says in the court papers that Corsi scrubbed his computer between Jan. 13, 2017, and March 1, 2017, deleting all email correspondence that predated Oct. 11, 2016, including the messages from Stone about WikiLeaks and Corsi's email to Malloch.
"He had not had the benefit of reviewing all of his emails prior to the interview and you graciously allowed him to review his emails and amend his statements — which he did. Now, after various amendments to his statements, Dr. Corsi is being asked to affirmatively state that he lied to FBI agents. The issue is that the statements that Dr. Corsi made were, in fact, the best he could recall at the time."
Well, yeah, he no longer had them. I'm gonna take a wild guess he didn't supply them to Mueller, either.
A lawyer for Paul Manafort, the president’s onetime campaign chairman, repeatedly briefed President Trump’s lawyers on his client’s discussions with federal investigators after Mr. Manafort agreed to cooperate with the special counsel, according to one of Mr. Trump’s lawyers and two other people familiar with the conversations.
The arrangement was highly unusual and inflamed tensions with Mr. Mueller’s office when prosecutors discovered it after Mr. Manafort began cooperating two months ago, the people said. Some legal experts speculated that it was a bid by Mr. Manafort for a presidential pardon even as he worked with the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, in hopes of a lighter sentence.
Rudolph W. Giuliani, one of the president’s personal lawyers, acknowledged the arrangement on Tuesday and defended it as a source of valuable insights into the special counsel’s inquiry and where it was headed. Such information could help shape a legal defense strategy, and it also appeared to give Mr. Trump and his legal advisers ammunition in their public relations campaign against the special counsel’s office.
For example, Mr. Giuliani said, Mr. Manafort’s lawyer Kevin M. Downing told him that prosecutors hammered away at whether the president knew about the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting where Russians promised to deliver damaging information on Hillary Clinton to his eldest son, Donald Trump Jr. The president has long denied knowing about the meeting in advance. “He wants Manafort to incriminate Trump,” Mr. Giuliani declared of Mr. Mueller.
While Mr. Downing’s discussions with the president’s team violated no laws, they helped contribute to a deteriorating relationship between lawyers for Mr. Manafort and Mr. Mueller’s prosecutors, who accused Mr. Manafort of holding out on them despite his pledge to assist them in any matter they deemed relevant, according to the people. That conflict spilled into public view on Monday when the prosecutors took the rare step of declaring that Mr. Manafort had breached his plea agreement by lying to them about a variety of subjects.
Mr. Manafort’s lawyers insisted that their client had been truthful but acknowledged that the two sides were at an impasse. Mr. Manafort will now face sentencing on two conspiracy charges and eight counts of financial fraud — crimes that could put him behind bars for at least 10 years.
Mr. Downing did not respond to a request for comment. Though it was unclear how frequently he spoke to Mr. Trump’s lawyers or how much he revealed, his updates helped reassure Mr. Trump’s legal team that Mr. Manafort had not implicated the president in any possible wrongdoing.
In another twist, Mr. Giuliani said a member of the president’s legal team, Jay Sekulow, received a packet of court papers two weeks ago relating to Mr. Corsi that included the draft plea document. The sender was anonymous, Mr. Giuliani said.
The president’s legal team notified the Justice Department that it had received the documents, Mr. Giuliani said.
Someone anonymously leaked Special Counsel docs to Trump's lawyer?
Cohen has pleaded guilty to lying to Congress. Which is a felony - 5 years in jail, $5K fine.
This is about the efforts to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. Trump & Co have assured everyone it fell through years ago, well before the political campaign. In fact, it continued months into the campaign.
Cohen made his disclosure as he pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about the Moscow project. He said he made false statements to hinder the Trump-Russia investigation and to protect Trump, who was identified in court as “Individual 1”.
“I made these statements to be consistent with Individual 1’s political messaging and out of loyalty with Individual 1,” Cohen told the federal court in Manhattan on Thursday morning, after signing a plea agreement with Mueller. He did not say if Trump directed him to lie.
If Trump directed Cohen to do this, then we're into Obstruction of Justice territory.
If Cohen did it on his own, bad news for Cohen's extended time on the inside. And it looks bad for Trump, but might not carry consequences. I don't think Trump lied to Congress himself - I think you have to be under oath. Lying in the regular course of business would not be enough. Someone correct me if I'm wrong on that.
Paul Manafort shared 2016 presidential campaign polling data with Konstantin Kilimnik, an associate the FBI has said has ties to Russian intelligence, according to a court filing.
Ladies and Gentlemen, we've reached collusion.
“Manafort ‘conceded’ that he discussed or may have discussed a Ukraine peace plan with Mr. Kilimnik on more than one occasion,” his attorneys quote the special counsel as saying, and “’acknowledged’ that he and Mr. Kilimnik met while they were both in Madrid,” without giving a date.
Manafort was in close contact with Kilimnik through the campaign, including meeting with him in the United States in May and again in August 2016.
Manafort’s lawyers provided no additional details about the “Ukrainian peace plan,” in their filing.
In January 2017, Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen has said he was given a Russian-friendly peace plan for Ukraine during a meeting at a New York hotel with a Ukrainian lawmaker and Felix Sater, a longtime Trump business associate.
I searching for information for my [Making big trouble for moose and squirrel - spam link removed]essay on tax and find your blog. I stay here for a few hours, there is a lot of interesting information.
Last edited by andi*pandi; Jan 10, 2019 at 03:39 PM.
Trump has actually denied working for Russia. But ... his nominee for Attorney General plans to tell the Senate he will protect the Mueller investigation.
Donald Trump told reporters on Monday that “I never worked for Russia”, as his attorney general nominee said it was “vitally important” to protect the investigation of special counsel Robert Mueller and to publicize its findings.
I wonder if the new AG pick has a firing date lined up before he even gets confirmed. Or if Trump will begin trashing Barr on twitter before confirmation.
The Senate Intelligence Committee has released a detailed report looking into Russian interference in the 2016 election. With close attention to connections to the Trump campaign. Guardian coverage:
The bipartisan report runs to nearly 1,000 pages and goes further than last year’s investigation into Russian election interference by special prosecutor Robert Mueller. It lays out a stunning web of contacts between Trump, his top election aides and Russian government officials, in the months leading up to the 2016 election.
The fact that a Republican-controlled Senate panel established a direct connection between the Trump campaign and Russian intelligence makes it harder for Trump and his supporters to allege that the investigation into possible collusion was a “witch-hunt” or “hoax” as the president has repeatedly claimed, in the remaining three months before the election.
The Republican-controlled Senate panel said it was hampered in its search for the truth by the fact that Kilimnik and Manafort kept their communications secret. They used burner phones, encrypted chat services, and frequently changed email accounts. They also messaged via a shared email draft.
Scott Horton, a lecturer at Columbia law school, said on Tuesday the Senate committee’s report “confirms nearly everything” about Trump’s ties to Moscow. He said it vindicated claims by the Democrats and others that the campaign had indeed colluded with the Russians – something Trump has vehemently denied.
“The committee offers a much deeper view into the intelligence collected by US authorities than does the much sketchier Mueller report. It will support the view that Mueller, far from exonerating Trump, simply expected to pass the baton to Congress to conduct deeper inquiries.”