CAMPAIGN STAFF ON RUSSIAN PAYROLLS
Did you know that a number of Trump’s top advisers, past and present, have strong ties to Russia’s elite?
- Michael Caputo, former adviser: Contracted to improve Putin’s image in 2000
- Carter Page, former adviser: Ran the Moscow branch of Merrill Lynch, which included advising Russian energy giant Gazprom.
- Paul Manafort, now former Campaign Chairman and Convention Manager
- 2005 : Manafort was officially hired as an adviser for Rinat Akhmetov, one of the Ukraine’s wealthiest businessmen.
- 2006 : Akhmetov introduces Manafort to Viktor Yanukovych, to be hired as an election campaign adviser (2007-2012). As consultant for Ukraine’s pro-Russian ruling political party, Manafort’s name was listed on secret records showing he received $12.7 million in undisclosed cash payments, according to the New York Times.
- In those 5 years, Manafort never registered as a foreign agent with the U.S. Justice Department. A requirement to “insure that the U.S. Government and the people of the United States are informed of the source of information (propaganda) and the identity of persons attempting to influence U.S. public opinion, policy, and laws.”
- Trump used to stand for a harsher watch on Russia in Ukraine, but after Manafort stepped in, he changed his opinion of Crimea and Putin’s occupation. The campaign also changed the GOP party platform removing language that had called for arming Ukraine against further Russian incursions. The gutting of this platform plank is contrary to the view of most GOP foreign policy leaders.
Sources: Washington Post 1 2 | Politifact | Politico | United States Department of Justice – FARA