The Russian collusion narrative is taking a backseat as the mainstream media continues to hound President Trump over the deadly protests in Charlottesville. However, recent disclosures reveal that the Hillary Clinton campaign was closer than the Trump campaign ever was to the Russian government.
The Podesta Group, a high-profile Washington D.C. lobbying firm, quietly disclosed their ties to a pro-Russian Ukrainian non-profit that has been linked to the former Ukrainian Prime Minister. The lobbying firm belatedly disclosed the work they did for The European Center for a Modern Ukraine between 2012 and 2014, according to The Washington Examiner.
The Podesta Group was founded in 1988 by brothers Tony and John Podesta. John Podesta was also the Chief of Staff for former President Bill Clinton, a Counsellor to former President Obama, and the chairman of the 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign.
The Podesta Group suspiciously disclosed their connections to the pro-Russian non-profit while the mainstream media had shifted their attention away from the Russian collusion investigation.
Paul Manafort, who briefly served as the campaign manager for Donald Trump’s 2016 election campaign, has been identified as “the man at the centre of the Russia investigation” by left-wing news agencies like The Telegraph.
In their article, The Telegraph argued the case against Paul Manafort. “Manafort was found by a news agency investigation to have helped a pro-Russian Ukrainian political party secretly move $2.2 million to two major Washington lobbying firms.” They wrote. However, The Telegraph conveniently failed to mention that The Podesta Group was one of the two major lobbying firms.
According to their recent disclosures, The Podesta Group received over $1 million between 2012 and 2014 to lobby on behalf of The European Center for a Modern Ukraine. Another $720,000 was delivered to Mercury, a right-wing lobbying group, over the same time period.
According to the Foreign Agents Registration Act, any lobbyist or public relations firm whose work primarily benefits a foreign government is required to register as a foreign agent to Congress. In their recent filings, The Podesta Group admitted that their work for The European Center for a Modern Ukraine benefited a foreign government. Their work for the Center was managed by Paul Manafort.
Essentially, The Podesta Group failed to disclose their connection to a foreign government for over 5 years. The Podesta Group was regularly meeting with high profile American officials during this period, include the Hillary Clinton State Department, and Joe Biden’s office of the Vice President.
Paul Manafort also failed to disclose his connection to the pro-Russian non-profit. His failure to disclose his connection to the Russian government has been used as the number one piece of evidence against the Trump administration. However, the recent disclosure makes it clear that the Podesta’s were also working on behalf of the Russian government alongside Paul Manafort.
Both Paul Manafort and The Podesta Group violated the trust of the American people by failing to disclose their relationship to a group with ties to a foreign government.
Ooops. Looks like Podesta has a Russian issue, not Trump. Is it time to investigate Podesta and Clinton, and leave Trump along?
However, an obvious and stark difference quickly arises. Paul Manafort was hired late, and only worked for the Trump campaign for five months. He was forced to resign immediately after his connection to the Ukrainian government was revealed.
The Podestas, on the other hand, have been close the Clintons for decades. John Podesta was working for the Obama administration while his brother was lobbying on behalf of a foreign government. Unline Manafort, the Podestas have received no scrutiny for their connections to foreign governments.