One Event at Trump’s D.C. Hotel Includes a $10,000-Per-Person Photo With the President Opportunity
In the old days, if a politician wanted an endorsement from, say, the President of the United States, they would find a way to ask for it. Maybe a phone call, maybe a word with high-level officials in the lawmaker’s party – which the President heads.
In the Trump era, politicians wanting an endorsement from the President apparently have a new way to get it: book an event at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C. That’s sure to get the President’s attention.
“Trump endorsements follow in the wake of candidates spending money at his properties,” a report from Fast Company, shows eight GOP politicians or PACs associated with them have held events or spent money at Trump properties, usually his D.C. hotel – which were followed with endorsements from President Trump.
A PAC run by Vice President Mike Pence and GOP Rep. Kevin McCarthy, who is running to become the next Speaker of the House, has spent over $225,000 at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., including $7500 at Trump’s Bedminster golf course, which goes to the D.C. hotel.
Trump “signaled his support for Rep. Kevin McCarthy’s (R-Calif.) candidacy for Speaker of the House” at one of the events last month at Trump’s D.C. hotel.
“It raises the specter that the president is essentially enriching himself by virtue of his position,” Noah Bookbinder, the executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics (CREW) told Fast Company. “Because if you have other politicians who think they’re more likely to get the president’s support if they spend money at his hotels or his golf courses or his other businesses, they’re more likely to do that and the president makes more money.”
Fast Company notes that Rep. McCarthy’s main competition for Speaker of the House comes from Rep. Jim Jordan. Congressman Jordan is a big Trump supporter – but not financially. Jordan’s campaign has spent just $3000 at a Trump property.
Making it seem all the more possible that Trump properties are in effect acting as money-laundering agents in a pay-for-endorsements scheme, a White House deputy press secretary, the Trump Organization, and the Trump International Hotel Washington, D.C., “did not reply when asked if any employees ever told a campaign that patronizing a Trump business could put the candidate in President Trump’s good graces.”
It would seem like a question about the President’s ethics would garner some sort of response, certainly a denial. But reportedly, nothing.
Fast Company names these politicians: Gov. Scott Walker (R-Wisc.); Reps. Tom Reed (R–NY), Ted Yoho (R-Fla.), Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.), Lee Zeldin (R-NY), and Republican John James, a candidate for U.S. Senate in Michigan, as having received endorsements after spending money at a Trump property.
On Monday, James was forced to apologize after a Nazi swastika was found in footage of his campaign ad. He claims it was a mistake. Some Democratic strategists say that’s impossible.
On Tuesday, Trump tweeted out an endorsement for James.
Also on the list is Rep. Andy Barr (R-KY), whose PAC spent a mere $292 at Trump’s D.C. hotel.
But wait, there’s more.
Next week President Trump will headline a fundraiser at the Trump International Hotel in D.C. for New Jersey Republican assemblyman Jay Webber, who is running for Congress.
“The October 25 event seeking hard money contributions, includes a $20,000-per-person roundtable with Trump and a photo with the president for $10,000-per-person,” the New Jersey Globe reports today.
Trump tweeted out his “Full and Total Endorsement!” of Webber last month:
.@JayWebberNJ is running for Congress in the 11th District of New Jersey. He is outstanding in every way. Strong on Borders, loves our Military and our Vets. Big Crime fighter. Jay has my Full and Total Endorsement!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 20, 2018
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Trump’s DHS Chief Delayed and Altered Report on Russian Election Interference Because It ‘Made the President Look Bad’
Chad Wolf, Trump’s Acting Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS) who was unlawfully installed, delayed and altered a federal government intelligence report on Russian interference in the 2020 presidential election because it “made the President look bad.”
A new Homeland Security Office of Inspector General report says Wolf for months delayed a report that was initially titled, “Russia Likely to Denigrate Health of US Candidates to Influence 2020 Electoral Dynamics.” It later was altered to “blunt” the focus of Russia’s attack on Democratic nominee Joe Biden by adding claims about China and Iran’s alleged attempts to denigrate then-President Donald Trump, who was running for re-election.
“A Tuesday report from DHS’s Office of Inspector General concluded that DHS’s Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) wrongly let politics interfere with the dissemination of the report, which documented a Russian disinformation campaign surrounding President Biden’s mental acuity,” The Hill reports.
“I&A employees during the review and clearance process changed the product’s scope by making changes that appear to be based in part on political considerations, potentially impacting I&A’s compliance with Intelligence Community policy,” OIG concluded in a report that found that “DHS did not adequately follow its internal processes.”
The Inspector General’s report says “the Acting Secretary [Wolf] asked the product be held because it made President Trump look bad and hurt President Trump’s campaign — the concept that Russia was denigrating candidate Biden would be used against President Trump.”
The Acting Under Secretary for Intelligence and Analysis “also told us he took contemporaneous notes of the meeting, a copy of which we obtained. The notes…read ‘AS1 – will hurt POTUS – kill it per his authorities.’”
The Office of Inspector General “concluded Wolf’s interference and other changes violated requirements that require intelligence products to be objective and independent of political consideration,” The Hill adds.
‘Smoking Gun’: Former US Attorney Labels Don Trump Jr’s Election Texts ‘Powerful Evidence’ of Fraud
Appearing on MSNBC’s “The Sunday Show” with host Jonathan Capehart, former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance made the case that Don Trump Jr’s texts about overturning the 2020 election results — coming just a few days after the public went to the polls — could end up being the “smoking gun” investigators are looking for.
Reacting to the CNN report that the oldest son of former president Donald Trump was pitching suggestions to former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows on how to remain in power, Vance called the texts “powerful evidence” that could be used in a criminal indictment.
“Is this proverbial smoking gun, especially after the Ginni Thomas texts?” host Capehart asked.
“It feels like it could be a smoking gun,” Vance conceded. “This is two days after the election, the election result hasn’t been called yet, but Donald Trump Jr. is already acting on the assumption his father is going to lose the election and, of course, the entire predication that his father has for maintaining that everything he did after the election, up to and including the march on the Capitol, was legitimate was this notion that he had not legitimately lost the election.”
“So to the extent that this becomes a powerful piece of evidence that they were aware that they had lost, that they were aware it wasn’t fraud and they were going to have to come up with these alternate schemes, including fake slates of electors to get across the finish line, this really could be very powerful,” she added.
Ginni Thomas Demanded Republicans Go ‘Out in the Streets’ to Protest Election, Support Donald Trump
Virginia “Ginni” Thomas demanded Congressional Republicans take the fight to overturn the 2020 election to the streets after Donald Trump lost his re-election bid to Joe Biden.
Thomas, a veteran far-right activist and lobbyist, and spouse to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, is under fire after multiple news organizations Thursday reported on 29 texts she exchanged with then-Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows demanding he work to overturn the election.
“Shortly after the 2020 election,” NBC News reports, Ginni Thomas “sent an email to an aide to a prominent House conservative saying she would have nothing to do with his group until his members go ‘out in the streets,’ a congressional source familiar with the exchange told NBC News.”
That email was sent to “an aide to incoming Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Banks, R-Ind.,” saying “that she was more aligned with the far-right House Freedom Caucus.”
“Just days later,” NBC adds, Texas GOP Congressman Louie Gohmert “appeared at a ‘Million MAGA March’ near the White House and told Trump supporters: ‘This was a cheated election and we can’t let it stand.’ He talked about ‘revolution.'”
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