Trump Is Distancing Himself From Manafort
Dear Friends & Neighbors,
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On Friday morning, June 15, 2018, just hours before a federal judge ordered Paul Manafort (former campaign chairman for Trump) to report to prison for witness tampering, President Donald Trump tried to distance himself from Manafort, stating ” Like, Manafort has nothing to do with our campaign….But I tell ya, I feel a little badly about it. They went back 12 years to get things that he did 12 years ago.” Manafort will remain in jail through his trial in September on charges of money laundering and conspiracy. Manafort has not been sentenced to anything yet. He is going to jail because he was not able to refrain from committing new crimes before the trial date.
Paul John Manafort Jr. is an American lobbyist, political consultant and lawyer. He joined Donald Trump‘s presidential campaign team in March 2016 and was campaign chairman from March to August 2016. He was previously an adviser to the U.S. presidential campaigns of Republicans Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, and Bob Dole. In 1980, Manafort co-founded the Washington, D.C.-based lobbying firm Black, Manafort & Stone, along with principals Charles R. Black Jr., and Roger J. Stone, joined by Peter G. Kelly in 1984. Manafort often lobbied on behalf of controversial foreign leaders such as former President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych, former dictator of the Philippines Ferdinand Marcos, dictator of the former Democratic Republic of the Congo Mobutu Sese Seko, and Angolan guerrilla leader Jonas Savimbi. Lobbying to serve the interests of foreign governments requires registration with the Justice Department under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA); however, as of June 2, 2017, Manafort had not registered. On June 27 he retroactively registered as a foreign agent.
Manafort is under investigation by multiple federal agencies. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has reportedly had an active criminal investigation on him since 2014 regarding business dealings while he was lobbying for Yanukovich. He is also a person of interest in the FBI counterintelligence probe looking into the Russian government’s interference in the 2016 presidential election. On October 30, 2017, Manafort surrendered to the FBI after a federal grand jury indicted him and his business associate Rick Gates. The charges arose from his consulting work for the pro-Russian government of Viktor Yanukovych in Ukraine. The indictment had been requested by Robert Mueller’s special investigation unit. The indictment charged Manafort with conspiracy against the United States, conspiracy to launder money, failure to file reports of foreign bank and financial accounts, being an unregistered agent of foreign principal, false and misleading FARA statements, and false statements. Manafort pleaded not guilty, and was placed under 24-hour GPS-monitored house arrest due to the weight of evidence in the cases against him. On June 15, 2018, Manafort’s bail was revoked and he was sent to jail due to charges of obstruction of justice and witness tampering that is alleged to have occurred while he was under house arrest. He pled not guilty to these additional charges.
Washington Post’s Philip Rucker, former U.S. Attorneyy Harry Litman, former federal prosecutor Paul Butler, and MSNBC national affairs analyst John Heilemann on the news of Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, being sent to jail for witness tampering, below:
Gathered, written, and posted by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker
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