WTF Community

Day 770


(Matt Kiser) #1

Updated 2/28/2019 3:00 PM PST

1/ Trump and Kim Jong-Un abruptly ended their summit in Vietnam after negotiations over North Korea's nuclear disarmament collapsed. The two leaders were unable to agree on steps toward denuclearization or any measures to ease tensions between North and South Korea. Trump said the main issue was the sanctions, which Kim wanted Trump to remove entirely. "We had some options," Trump said, "but at this time we decided not to do any of the options." He added, "Sometimes you have to walk, and this was just one of those times." (Politico / New York Times / NBC News / Washington Post)


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://whatthefuckjusthappenedtoday.com/2019/02/28/day-770/

#2

Good move…and hope it will be public.


#3

Ok…great. Schiff’s going after the bottom line - T’s finances.


#4

and more Cohen in public meeting

HPSCI -

House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence

(https://intelligence.house.gov/)

and the week after Felix Sater :fire:


#5

This is what democracy looks like!

Felix Sater testifying in public, under oath… Boom! :boom:


#6

Felix Sater, who will be testifying in public on capital hill next month, has the goods on Trump Tower Moscow. He can also nail Trump on lying under oath. Cohen made the allegation in his testimony yesterday and Sater is the witness who can back him up.

In a stunning congressional hearing, Donald Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen testified the president lied under oath in a civil case involving the doomed Trump Tower and International Hotel project on Fort Lauderdale Beach…

…it has become clear that Sater was also working with Cohen to gain approval for a Trump high-rise project in Moscow well into 2016, when Trump was telling the public he had no dealings whatsoever with Russia. It was Sater, Cohen testified today, who suggested that Trump offer Vladimir Putin a free penthouse in the tower to help get it done. Further, photographs have surfaced of Trump and Sater together in public on at least three occasions. We’ll let Congressman Rouda take it from here:

Rouda: It is worth noting that it is well publicized the direct relationship between the Russian mafia and the Kremlin. Over the years, President Trump was asked how many times he interacted with convicted Russian mobster Felix Sater. In 2013, President Trump testified that, quote, “Not many… If he were sitting in the room right now, I really wouldn’t know what he looked like,” unquote… Isn’t it true that President Trump knew convicted Russian mobster Felix Sater in 2013 when he made that statement?

Cohen: Yes.

Rouda: Isn’t it true that because of Mr. Sater’s relationship with the Trump organization that he had an office in the Trump Tower?

Cohen: And on the 26th floor.

Rouda: And the 26th floor is important, why?

Cohen: Because it’s Mr. Trump’s floor.

Rouda: So he had an office on the same floor as President Trump?

Cohen: In fact, his office when he left became my office.

Rouda: Based on those facts, isn’t it true that President Trump misled at best or at worst lied under oath?

Cohen: Yes.

And here’s what Rep. Rouda and Cohen are referring to: it’s the 2-minute clip from Trump’s sworn deposition in which he flagrantly lies about his relationship with Sater. I’m sure Sater will set the record straight when he testifies. I hope this video is played at the hearing for all to see – it would make a damning and indelible moment.

BTW, Rep. Harley Rouda is the Democrat who helped depose Putin’s favorite Congressman, Dana Rohrabacher, in the midterms. He certainly has hit the ground running. Just think, in an alternate universe where we didn’t flip the House, yesterday’s testimony would not exist, nor would all the testimony we are anticipating next month.

Lawrence O’Donnell put it well in his show last night, “Not a single thing that we saw today, none of it would have happened. The hearing would not have occurred if the Democrats did not win the House of Representatives on election night – tonight’s lesson [that] your vote really, really matters.”


#7

Time to invest heavily in popcorn futures. :popcorn:


#8

And while T did not adhere to any of his advisers’ opinions - Kelly/McGahn, he also received direct pressure from Jared and Ivanka to upgrade Jared’s security clearance. JaVanka (Jared and Ivanka) are also complaining now that Kelly/McGahn must have some kind of dislike for them, and were trying to stem Jared’s clearance.

Some more details from WaPo tonight after the earlier NYT article (NYT article 2.28.19)

President Trump early last year directed his then-chief of staff, John F. Kelly, to give presidential son-in-law Jared Kushner a top-secret security clearance — a move that made Kelly so uncomfortable that he documented the request in writing, according to current and former administration officials.

After Kushner, a senior White House adviser, and his wife, Ivanka Trump, pressured the president to grant Kushner the long-delayed clearance, Trump instructed Kelly to fix the problem, according to a person familiar with Kelly’s account, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe internal discussions.

Kelly told colleagues that the decision to give Kushner top-secret clearance was not supported by career intelligence officials, and he memorialized Trump’s request in an internal memo, according to two people familiar with the memo and the then-chief of staff’s concerns.

…

“The revelation that President Trump personally intervened to overrule White House security officials and the Intelligence Community to grant a Top Secret security clearance to his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, is the latest indicator of the President’s utter disregard for our national security and for the men and women who sacrifice so much every day to keep us safe,” Schiff said. “There is no nepotism exception for background investigations.”

…

Both Trump and his daughter, Ivanka, have publicly denied the president was involved in securing a clearance for Kushner. The president told the New York Times in a Jan. 31 interview that he did not direct Kelly or similar officials to grant a clearance for his son-in-law, and Ivanka Trump told ABC News earlier this month that her father was not involved in the process.

…
And the CIA was not going to offer Kushner any further top level SCI clearance…they are staying firm.

Kushner did not receive a clearance to see the most highly classified intelligence the government produces, known as sensitive, compartmented information, or SCI, The Washington Post reported last July.

That meant that Kushner was effectively barred from seeing information gleaned from human spies or from the government’s vast signals intelligence apparatus. It’s that kind of intelligence that forms the basis of the president’s daily intelligence briefing and that is customarily given to senior policymakers and Cabinet officials.

Kushner’s lack of SCI access suggests that the CIA has not signed off on his receiving that level of intelligence, security experts said. He had struggled to obtain even his top-secret clearance, in part because of his contacts with certain foreign government officials, [The Post previously reported]


#9

:pushpin:I just want remind everybody who Sater is and how he fits into Cohen’s story. Re-upped from November 2018

The Moscow-born Sater was the managing director of the Bayrock Group, a real estate conglomerate, while the Trump SoHo building in Manhattan was being built. Bayrock was involved with the construction of the building. Sater also has a more colorful past. He was also an FBI informant in the late 1990s after pleading guilty to a $40 million stock fraud scheme put together by the Russian mafia. That was a few years after Sater got into a bar fight and stabbed a man in the face with a broken margarita glass. He went to prison for a year.

It was Sater who suggested to Cohen he should contact Russian officials about developing a building in Russia. At one point in 2015, Sater told Cohen, “Our boy (Mr. Trump) can become president of the USA and we can engineer it.” He boasted, “I will get all of Putins team to buy in on this, I will manage this process” and said, "I will get Putin on this program and we will get Donald elected."

He’s a front stabber…


#10

Here’s the relevant 1 min. clip from the interview. I wonder who taught her to lie so flagrantly and with such confidence?


#11

As Rachel Maddow pointed out tonight, one of the most startling revelations in this article comes at the end:

"[Deutsche Bank] is just now being cooperative; they had not been," [Maxine Waters, House Financial Services chairwoman] said. "But now that I have the chairmanship and we’re in the majority … yes, they have offered to cooperate and my staff have just started to work with them to get the documents.”

Two takeaways:

  1. This is great news; it’s about time we found out what went on between Trump and DB, a known big time money launderer. :moneybag:

  2. Shame, once again, on the Republicans for being complicit in covering up for Trump. By remaining passive and not taking the proper assertive steps to force cooperation from DB while they were in control of the committee, they allowed DB to slide and any proof of Trump’s financial crimes with them to remain hidden. Because of the Republicans, we’ve lost two years in our search for the truth about Trump’s finances – and if we hadn’t flipped the house, Republicans might have succeeded in burying the evidence forever. :see_no_evil:

Another intriguing tidbit in this article – Waters teases this:

The House Financial Services Committee chairwoman hinted to reporters on Thursday that she may even have a lead in the form of a letter "from somebody who told me about a situation that they want to talk with me more about.”

Go Waters! :muscle: :mag_right: :balance_scale:


#12

Spin it Hannity…

And yes, we’d need to check those facts please.

thx. @rusticgorilla


#13

Lanny Davis, Cohen’s attorney, afforded us just a glimpse of what went on behind closed doors today as Cohen testified before the House Intelligence Committee. Yes, Davis is a spinmaster who has, on at least one occasion, retracted an unsubstantiated claim, but it’s certainly attention grabbing when he asserts that today “new information was developed that really could be game changing … this is about lying and obstruction evidence.” He also alluded to “suborning perjury” and added “it’s pretty explosive.” (2:20) It’s this new information that has supposedly led the committee to bring Cohen back in for another round of testimony next week.

Davis then goes on to drop some crucial news: the committee will have access to documents that should allow them to determine if Trump’s lawyers encouraged Cohen to lie to Congress (i.e., suborned perjury which is a felony).

But first a little background: In October, 2017, Cohen submitted a letter to the House Intelligence Committee in which he stated that in January, 2016, the Trump Tower Moscow negotiations ended and the deal was abandoned. However, prosecutors demonstrated that was a lie and negotiations were still ongoing in June, 2016. This lie is one of the crimes for which Cohen will be serving prison time.

After Cohen created his initial draft of the letter, Trump’s lawyers were able to review it and mark it up with suggested changes (they had a joint defense agreement). This “redlined draft” was returned to Cohen who then incorporated some or all of their suggestions to create his final draft which he submitted to the committee.

So there are three drafts of the letter: the initial draft by Cohen, redlined draft by Trump’s lawyers, and final draft by Cohen based on the redlines. And here’s the crucial development: Davis told Maddow that the committee will have the opportunity to review and compare all three drafts. (4:10)

That’s huge news, since this comparison could reveal if Trump’s lawyers suggested changes to Cohen’s testimony that could be judged as suborning perjury and, if so, that would beg the question, “Was Trump a party to that crime?” Right now this is in the realm of speculation, but with these new documents in hand, the committee is hot on the trail of finding real answers.


(Matt Kiser) closed #14

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