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Trump, Manafort and Flynn’s Finances Are ‘The Glue’ That Holds the Russia Probe Together: Former Deputy AG

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Former deputy assistant attorney general Harry Litman told MSNBC on Monday that “the glue” tying together all the actors in the Russia probe is the finances of President Donald Trump and those of his convicted campaign manager Paul Manafort and his convicted National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.

The remark occurred during a larger discussion of Paul Manafort’s role in the conspiracy, including his “work on behalf of pro-Russian figures in Ukraine” and his subsequent lying about it to the special prosecutor after he got caught.

“If you’re looking for the quid pro quo, you see the quid, you see the work by Russia, and the meddling in the election. What is the quo?” fellow guest Ken Vogel, who broke the story for the New York Times. “You have at least the potential of building a theory around the idea that the quo would be a peace deal that would favor Russia and potentially result in the lifting of U.S. sanctions against Russia which, of course, is the biggest driving foreign policy objective of the Russians.”

Litman noted that prosecutor Andrew Weissman’s refusal to share specific details “even in a closed door hearing” showed that the special counsel was getting close to the “radioactive core” of the case, but offered tantalizing hints.

“What [Weissman] is proposing, even though it is heavily redacted, as Ken says, seems a kind of grand bargain involving not simply a sweetheart deal for Russia and Ukraine, but the lifting of sanctions, which Putin dearly wanted,” Litman said. “And the glue that holds it all together on the U.S. side are the personal financial interests of the actors. Manafort to make money from [pro-Russian former President of Ukraine, Viktor] Yanukovych, Flynn to do something with the sanctions, and Trump to build his big crown jewel of the Trump Tower.”

“So it really seems to be getting toward quite a grand scheme,” he added, “where officials are feathering their nests at the expense of U.S. national interests, and doing Russia’s bidding.”

Watch the video below.

 

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‘Malevolent Kraken’: Tulsi Gabbard Mocked After Attacking Hillary Clinton Over Claim Russia Is Grooming a Woman Democrat

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‘Unhinged and Disgraceful’

Democratic U.S. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii launched an attack against her own party and her own party’s most-recent presidential nominee late Friday afternoon, as reports grew that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Russia is grooming an unnamed but current 2020 presidential candidate, a woman, to run as a third-party candidate.

Gabbard – as did many – apparently assumed Clinton was referring to her, and took to Twitter to slam Clinton as “the queen of warmongers, embodiment of corruption, and personification of the rot that has sickened the Democratic Party for so long.”

She also said Clinton has been “cowardly” behind a “concerted campaign to destroy my reputation,” and invited her to once again run for president.

Clinton, whose charges against Donald Trump have come true, said Russia’s goal is to throw the election once again to Trump.

While Clinton did not name or even suggest Rep. Gabbard, many on social media assumed it was the Congresswoman from Hawaii.

Gabbard has a history of aligning herself with Russian and Syrian talking points. Her unannounced and largely to this day unexplained 2017 trip to visit Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad, who has been accused of war crimes including gassing his own people.

On Twitter, Gabbard was quickly berated and mocked:

 

Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr and a CC license

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Watch: Trump Announces Perry Out

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President Donald Trump has just announced his Secretary of Energy, Rick Perry, has resigned.

“Rick and I have been talking for 6 months” Trump told reporters in Texas minutes ago. “In fact, I thought he might go a little sooner. But he’s got some very big plans, he’s going to be very successful. We’ll announce his successor pretty soon.”

Trump added he will announce Perry’s replacement at a rally tonight.

Perry was Trump’s second Energy Secretary. He appointed Grace Bochenek as Acting Secretary on his first day in office. She stayed until March, when Perry was sworn in.

UPDATE:
Video –
Trump says Perry leaving by end of year.

This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. This story will be updated, and NCRM will likely publish follow-up stories on this news. Stay tuned and refresh for updates.

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Ambassador Serves Up Devastating Testimony Trump Ordered Him to Work With Giuliani on Ukraine

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President Donald Trump’s Ambassador to the European Union is testifying behind closed door to congressional impeachment investigators and has just delivered a devastating indictment of the president. Ambassador Gordon Sondland says President Trump ordered him to work with his personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, on Ukraine.

“He directed those of us present at the meeting to talk to Mr. Giuliani, his personal attorney, about his concerns,” Ambassador Sondland said, according to The Washington Post. “It was apparent to all of us that the key to changing the president’s mind on Ukraine was Mr. Giuliani.”

Sondland added that it was not “until much later that Mr. Giuliani’s agenda might have also included an effort to prompt the Ukrainians to investigate Vice President Biden or his son or to involve Ukrainians, directly or indirectly, in the president’s 2020 reelection campaign.”

Vice News’ Cameron Joseph adds that “Sondland, in prepared opening statement, says Trump directed him, Volker and Perry to work with Giuliani on Ukraine corruption in late May.” Volker is former United States special representative to Ukraine Kurt Volker. Perry is Trump’s Energy Secretary Rick Perry.

CNN adds, from Sondland’s prepared remarks that he “will testify that Trump put on hold effort to strengthen relations with Ukraine until top US officials were in contact with Giuliani, who had been pursuing investigation into the Bidens and 2016 elections.”

But one expert is poking holes in Sondland’s claims of innocence.

Matthew Miller, a former Dept. of Justice top spokesperson:

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