Two of the more surreal storylines from the Trump-Russia scandal are Donald Trump Jr’s confirmed attempt at getting compromising information on Hillary Clinton from the Russian government, and Donald Trump Sr’s allegedly tape-recorded dalliance with Russian prostitutes in Moscow. Now, thanks to a surreal revelation from one of the key Russians in the scandal, we now know that these two events are indirectly connected to each other.
Donald Trump and his Republican allies have spent the past few weeks trying to discredit the Trump-Russia dossier, which was the source of the “Pee Pee Tape” story among other allegations. That dossier was assembled by former MI6 agent Christopher Steele for a research firm called Fusion GPS. Now, according to a Reuters report (link), the Kremlin lawyer who met with Donald Trump Jr is asserting that she offered the Trump campaign compromising information from Fusion GPS about Hillary Clinton, and the Trump team had no trouble accepting the legitimacy of Fusion GPS at that time.
This serves to immediately undermine the Trump team’s assertion that Fusion GPS and its Trump-Russia dossier shouldn’t be trusted. It’s also a reminder that a Republican donor initially hired the firm to craft the Trump-Russia dossier during the Republican primary race, in the hope of steering the Republican nomination away from Trump. It appears Republican donors may have also hired Fusion GPS to dig up dirt on Clinton for the general election. It serves to further debase the notion that Clinton somehow invented the claims in the Trump-Russia dossier. There’s also another key angle here.
This is the third time in recent weeks in which Kremlin lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya has served up details which incriminate the Donald Trump campaign. First she admitted she ran her meeting notes past Vladimir Putin in advance. Then she asserted that Donald Trump Jr offered to relax the Magnitsky Act in exchange for dirt on Hillary Clinton. Now she’s asserting that Trump Jr was willing to accept dirt from Fusion GPS. Veselnitskaya is serving up the Trump team on a silver platter to Robert Mueller. Does she have evidence to back up her claims? We’ll soon find out.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report