Two months ago a nearly year-old tape was released in which Republican House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy accused Donald Trump of being on Vladimir Putin’s payroll, a revelation which received signifiant attention at the time. What received less attention was that in the same breath, McCarthy accused his fellow Republican Congressman Dana Rohrabacher of also being on Russia’s payroll. Now it turns out Rohrabacher also met with Donald Trump Jr.’s Kremlin contact.
Kevin McCarthy was caught on tape saying There’s two people I think Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump” to his fellow Republican Congressmen, at which point Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan cut him off and swore them all to secrecy (source: LA Times). This around the time Donald Trump was becoming the Republican nominee in mid 2016. Now Rohrabacher is suddenly in the thick of the Trump-Russia scandal.
Now that Donald Trump Jr. has confessed to having met with Kremlin representative Natalia Veselnitskaya in the hope of rigging the election against Hillary Clinton, the other actions of Veselnitskaya while she was in the United States have come under scrutiny. Five days after she met with Trump Jr. and two other top members of the Trump campaign, she traveled to Washington DC and met with Dana Rohrabacher (source: The Hill). This in turn places additional scrutiny on the words of Kevin McCarthy, who made the original accusation about Rohrabacher.
Why did McCarthy make a point of accusing Rohrabacher of being on Putin’s payroll alongside Donald Trump? What did McCarthy know about that he was alluding to? And perhaps most importantly, why was Paul Ryan so concerned with making sure that word of McCarthy’s accusations never left the room? What did Ryan know about Trump’s or Rohrabacher’s Russian connections that prompted him to silence McCarthy in such hurried and nervous fashion? If you’re a regular reader, feel free to support Palmer Report
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report