The investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election is heating up with new information brought to light recently. President Trump’s oldest son, Donald Trump Jr., has been closely linked to the ever-expanding probe, by The Senate’s Special Counsel, Robert Mueller, into the Trump administrations close ties with the Russians during the 2016 elections.
In the latest revelation gleaned from campaign finance disclosures the Senate Judiciary Committee has found that the President’s re-election committee had paid close to $238,000 towards the law firm representing the President’s son in the ongoing investigation during the latter part of this year. Donald Jr. has been under investigation into his role as a possible conduit and facilitator of Russian influence after a meeting he had with a prominent Kremlin-linked lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya in 2016 during the campaign.
The payments by the Trump re-election committee to Donald Jr. lawyers, although allowed, have cast a dark shadow onto Donald Jr. and by extension the Trump party with many now calling for investigations to be intensified to get to the truth at the heart of the investigation, that Russian hackers and propaganda professionals most likely worked tirelessly to undermine the Democratic campaign thereby allowing the GOP to place their nominee, Donald Trump, into the White
Present at the June 9th 2016 meeting at the Trump Tower was the former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort and Senior White House advisor Jared Kushner, who is married to President Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump. Of note is that this was the first high profile, private meeting between the Trump administration and the Russians, at least as far as public disclosures are concerned.
Donald Jr. initially downplayed the meeting by telling investigators that the sit down with the Russian lawyer was simply to discuss a program where Russian children were adopted in the past and how the Russian government had halted the program. However, in June this year, Donald Jr. admitted that the meeting was primarily held as he was led to believe that the Russian lawyer had damaging information about Hillary Clinton, which could be used in the elections.
By now various intelligence agencies have conducted their own investigations into Russian meddling and have concluded that there was definitely a concerted effort from the Russian’s side to alter the outcome of the elections. The big question is whether Special Counsel Meuller will be able to prove definitively and irrefutably that there is a real link(s) to Russian influence and the willful collusion with them by members of Trump’s administration.
Further signs of collusion have surfaced recently when it was discovered by NBC’s Rachel Maddow that former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort has close financial relationships with Russian businessman and oligarch Oleg Deripaska. Mr. Deripaska, an aluminum billionaire and wildly popular figure in Russia, loaned a total of close to $60 million through various channels to companies owned or linked to Paul Manafort. Although these loans on the surface are slated for business purposes the actual, real motivation behind the payments are being closely investigated as this latest information is expected to tie into the ongoing investigation.