Nunes facing controversy over memo release

Already at the center of national controversy, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Tulare) is drawing even greater criticism on the local front as the GOP-controlled House Intel Committee voted this week to release a controversial memo penned by Nunes.

Critics–including those running to unseat him, local political advocates, and a prominent county official–claim Nunes is acting recklessly, showing undue partisanship, and threatening the nation’s security by claiming the FBI and the Department of Justice acted inappropriately in the ongoing investigation into possible Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential elections.

“It’s a move that derails Congress, the press and all of us as citizens from focusing on all that does need the country’s attention and solutions,” said Valerie Ehrlich, a spokeswoman for South Valley Civics.

Ever Hotter Water

Controversy surrounding Nunes began when the congressman was forced to remove himself from his role as head of the Intel Committee after it was revealed he may have inappropriately shared classified data with the Trump White House.

Nunes later lied to the press about his involvement in the exchange, leading to an ethics investigation that concluded in late 2017.

While claiming to have distanced himself from the work of the Intel Committee while the investigation of his behavior was ongoing, Nunes continued to be involved behind the scenes, running a parallel, but seemingly partisan investigation.

Nunes apparently sent staff members to England to contact Chris Steele, a former British intelligence agent who penned a dossier alleging Trump is vulnerable to blackmail by Russian agents.

Nunes also issued subpoenas demanding documents from the FBI and the DOJ, leading him to accuse the agencies of partisan corruption, and threatening to hold officials from those agencies in contempt of Congress.

Poisoning the Well

Political leaders from the opposite side of the aisle, as well as pundits from many major national news outlets say the so-called “Nunes memo” is an attempt to discredit investigators from those agencies and derail the investigation into collusion between Russian agents and the Trump campaign.

“It’s a brainwashing memo,” Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Castro Valley) told MSNBC, following the vote to release the four-page document. “Its only purpose is to poison the well of the members who would have to hold the president accountable if he were to fire (Special Council Robert) Mueller by tainting their perception of the FBI.”

Andrew Janz, a violent crimes prosecutor in Fresno County and Visalia native who is seeking the seat Nunes now holds, goes a step further, calling Nunes’ actions a threat to the safety of all Americans.

“Devin Nunes is a national security risk,” Janz said. “He has no business having a security clearance, let alone the job of leading the House Intelligence Committee.”

Janz is calling on Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) to remove Nunes from his role as Intel Committee chair. He pulled no punches.

“If Devin Nunes wants to continue attacking law enforcement and cover up the Russia investigation by crafting a fake narrative to protect the president, I suggest that he join the other 30 Republicans who have already announced retirements so he can take a job with Fox News as a Trump defender,” Janz said.

Relentless Opposition

Meanwhile, the grassroots movement to push Nunes out of office shows no signs of slowing.

This week marked the first anniversary of weekly protests outside Nunes’ Clovis office.

Naming Nunes “an embarrassment to the voters of the 22nd Congressional District,” the Every Tuesday Vigil takes place at noon at Clovis Avenue and Third Street.

In Visalia, South Valley Civics continues to hold Nunes Watch Rallies outside Nunes’ Visalia office at Church and Main streets on the final Tuesday of each month.

“Nunes not only does not communicate in any meaningful way with his constituents,” Ehrlich said, “but he engages in reckless, dangerous activities that stand to undercut the laws, procedures and protections of this nation.”

The next Nunes Watch Rally will be 11:20am on Tuesday, February 20.

Local Power Shift

Members of the GOP, including Nunes, have long depended on unwavering support from Tulare County’s power base, including most officials, appointed and elected, but there are signs a shift is underway.

“He (Nunes) has shown a shockingly ‘un-independence’ in investigating the possibility of Russian interference in the US presidential election,” said one prominent Tulare County official who asked for anonymity to avoid fallout. “The Congress should be independent, and he’s acted in an extreme partisan manner.”

This attitude is reflected in recent poll numbers, which show Nunes leading any Democratic opponent by just 5 points. That compares to the more than 26 points Nunes won by in 2016.

That shift may reflect the increasingly widespread notion among his detractors that Nunes does not represent the best interest of his constituents or possess the independence expected of a congressman.

26 thoughts on “Nunes facing controversy over memo release

  1. I’m sorry, but this article is a load of PAP! He is CONSTANTLY on KMJ taking calls from the public, constantly providing information to his constituents. His opponents are attempting to paint him as an attention whore, like Kamala Harris or Corey Booker. However, his actions tell another story: EVERYTHING he has done has been by the book.

    I find it very telling that, 2 weeks ago, the memo was, as the Dems were calling it, “a nothingburger.” However, when it became more clear that the memo would be released, the spin to control the damage has been in overdrive. The Democrats have done everything short of shooting Mr. Nunes in an attempt to stop that memo from being released.

    Do better, Valley Voice. This article was blatantly partisan. I would have expected it more from the NYT or LAT.

  2. Devin Nunes apparently believes that he continues to work only for Comrade Trump and he must protect him at all costs. Guess he thinks that he was still on the Trump transition team. He apparently believes that in order to protect Comrade Trump he needs to destroy the Justice Department. He is not fit to serve in congress. As for his sneaking in the backdoor of Ray Appleton’s conservative talk show radio program he is not talking to any constituent that might ask him hard questions. He goes on Appleton’s talk show radio program because he knows he will be shielded and protected as all calls are screened and filtered out…..only kissass conservatives who verbally fistbump each other gets air time. Fresno Bee Editorial called him Trump’s stooge but I consider him to be the top candidate of the year to win the nomination as the best card carrying Russian apologist who serves at the pleasure of Trump/Putin.

  3. The Devin Nunes memo supposedly was to show damning evidence against the FBI and the Justice Department has just admitted on Fox News that he never “actually” read the FISA Application. I read his memo put out by Fox News and I concur with the masses that his memo is a dud, a huge nothing burger. He also told Fox News to stay tuned for Part II……. he is investigating the State Department! I could say that this guy is a total joke but the damage that he is doing to our country is no joke! Just goes to show just how stupid Trump and all these fellow Republicans are to pick Nunes as their go-to-man to muddy up the waters in the Russian investigation in order to protect Trump and to help keep their power and majority in Washington’s Never-Never-Land. When it comes to stupidity these people are at the top of the heap! Trump and the Republicans are more than willing to throw the Justice Department over the cliff without a moment hesitation…..and they claim to be the party of law and order. What type of American seeks to harm and destroy our government institutions just to serve and protect Trump? John McCain said today that Nunes is doing Putin’s work for him. One could make the case that Nunes does act like a Russian operative. I have never voted a straight party ticket in all my 54 years of voting….. I normally vote for the person not the party. That ends here and now. I don’t recognize this current Republican Party. I don’t respect this current Republican Party. And I sure as hell don’t trust this Republican Party.

  4. Nunez is a Traitor doing the work of Trump’s Puppet Master Vladimir Putin of Russia. This is the 1st time ever that 2 branches of our government i.e. legislative branches(House Republicans) & executive(Trump WH) branch have attacked & discredited out intelligence DOJ & FBzi community. Putin Loves Trump & the GOP. Vote democrat Fresno, CA

  5. Although I am a candidate running against Congressman Nunes this year, on a human level, I want to feel sorry for a guy who has spent a whole year looking like a deer caught in the headlights. I think that by the time he realized he was committing obstruction of justice, he was already in so deep that he could find no way to extricate himself. I am reminded that Nixon never spent a day behind bars, but his henchmen did. Nunes should do his party a favor and withdraw from the race while the Republicans still have time to put forward an unsullied candidate. Jim Patterson? Allen Ishida? Ashley Swearengin? Teresita Andres? There are worthy candidates out there who could carry the GOP banner, but Devin Nunes is no longer one of them.

    • Wishful thinking on your part. Nunes like his mentor Trump, thinks that the end justifies the means……I can only hope that losing his congressional seat is the end that prevails. Any Republican that does not openly denounce what the Republicans who serve in both the House and the Senate are doing to our democracy is not fit to hold any office. I haven’t read or heard any of the three that you named do so ….but please enlighten me if you have.

  6. Barbara, I have no inside information on any of the four I named. Two ran against Nunes in past GOP primaries. Two considered running for Governor this year and decided against it. They were just the first four names that came to mind, and I do not endorse any of them. I am, after all, a candidate in this race, and I endorse me. However, I also think that the best solutions will come from a spirit of bipartisanship that we have not had for a very long while. And a spirit of bipartisanship requires the ability to step back and look not just at what would be best for my side, but what would be best for the other side, even when the other side is being so short-sighted that they can’t see what is best for them in the long run.

    • If the other side can’t see the forrest for the trees that are in front of them…..I don’t want them holding any office in the government…..Republican or Democrat!

  7. McCain is correct. The last 2 years, the Republican party has done the work for the Russians. They are destroying our country and they are ok with it.
    1.) Trump’s racism; ok
    2.) Trump’s womanizing; ok
    3.) Trump’s lies; ok
    4.) Trump’s firing of Comey; ok 5.) Trump’s bullying; ok
    6.) Trump’s son’s meeting with the Russian’s; ok
    This list can go on and on.
    I will not vote Republican again.

  8. WOW Mr Nunes is a congressman doing his job, not just going thru motions like most do. I for one don’t want a man/women in an office that won’t do anything but follow the herd (Pelosi, Feinstein, Waters) need I say more? Our congressman Nunes is providing his constituents & all Americans with info that sheds light on the Obama appointed crooks that have lied. Let’s see
    1 fast n furious
    2 bengazzi attacks were because of a video
    3 we just want everybody to have access to Healthcare, all ya have to do is walk in an insurance company & ????
    4 rates won’t rise & you can keep your dr & your current insurance
    5 all those executive orders!
    Besides being the most devisive admin. ever, there are the reason for this special council mueller because of more lies about Russian collusion & your buying it! Wake up Tulare! & America as a whole

    • The only job Nunes is doing is a Russian mafia hit job under the expressed direction of Trump. His job is to muddy up the waters and redirect attention in the Trump/Russian investigation, even if it means undermining our government institutions. All the same-o rhetoric that you keep on regurgitating will not change the fact that Nunes and the majority of the Republican Party are so hell bent on protecting Trump just to keep their political power that they are more than willing to weaken our democracy or destroy it if necessary. Why are you helping them do Putin’s bidding? In doing so you are taking part in the damaging of American. YOU need to wake up!

  9. WOW Mr Nunes is a congressman doing his job, not just going thru motions like most do. I for one don’t want a man/women in an office that won’t do anything but follow the herd (Pelosi, Feinstein, Waters) need I say more? Our congressman Nunes is providing his constituents & all Americans with info that sheds light on the Obama appointed crooks that have lied. Let’s see
    1 fast n furious
    2 bengazzi attacks were because of a video
    3 we just want everybody to have access to Healthcare, all ya have to do is walk in an insurance company & ????
    4 rates won’t rise & you can keep your dr & your current insurance
    5 all those executive orders!
    Besides being the most devisive admin. ever, there are the reason for this special council mueller because of more lies about Russian collusion & your buying it! Wake up Tulare! & America as a whole

    • In case you are living in a total fog JG both Clinton and Obama are no longer government employees…… we are dealing with and talking about the here-and-now. You really need to get your head out of your……….. weeds! 🙂

      • Barbara, sorry we’ll have to agree to disagree, & hope all the facts come out so that we will all know the truth.

  10. Unbelievable…….. the trash you write “Barbara” and the rest of you whining, bleeding heart, hug a thug, bring back Obama, Clinton loving idiots.
    You can’t see through the haze of defeat. Devin Nunes a traitor? A Russian Mafia hit man? C’mon…. the FISA was used to conduct surveillance and listen to conversations of a private citizen, with NO PROBABLE CAUSE, the secret intel was made up from a yahoo news story leaked by a British spy? Who was no longer reliable……This was the fail safe for the Dems…..hopefully HRC wins….. oh crap she lost….. how’d that happen? No worries we can make up some stuff and impeach President Trump……. Now Mr. Nunes looks into what happened, finds out that the upper FBI command and justice department personnel were on the DNC payroll. They filed an affidavit that was not factual and somebody raised their right hand, swore under oath it was true and fact….. and nobody sees this as a problem? They deceived a federal judge, they committed a crime.
    You dislike this man so much, that your ok with violating the constitutional rights of another? For what? The big win? Open boarders? DACA? You call someone a traitor, you should look in the mirror and ask yourself what have I done for this Country?
    You are all so amazing….. rely on Pelosi and Schumer those two dimwits or Schiff, he is a weasel or the rest of the “not my President” gang. Guess what if this is your country he is your President. You can openly say horrible things about him and his family….. take your verbal shots at him and Mr. Nunes…. protest and scream foul….. because your feelings are hurt, because the President says things that offend your sensitive beliefs……believe it or not somethings he blurts out are exactly what a lot of people (some close to you) are thinking.
    What will the excuse be when those agents who falsified the FISA warrant and your Queen Hillary get subpoenas for the grand jury and charges are filed.
    The witches are the witch hunters. Can you people actually whine, cry and complain for 3-8 more years? Men and Women died for your freedoms, for Democracy…..yet when it doesn’t go your way, you denounce it and look for a way throw blame or fault on the system and call people traitors. Most of you don’t even know what a traitor is…… just another statement to convolute the fact you bet on the wrong hand and now you got caught trying to stack the deck.
    It’s disgusting. Cry me a river.

  11. Wallowing in what? and it’s Filo not Clyde so if your taking a personal dig at me by referring to me as the loveable Orangutan, with the stellar right hook, I might be offended. Then again probably not because I have what’s called a spine and don’t take things like name calling or simple jabs so personal, to the point I need a padded safe room with hot cocoa, coloring books, soft music and mental reassurance that all will be ok…… That the big white man who won isn’t going to destroy the country as you from the looney left believe he is doing…… I don’t worry about the Russian Collusion or the CNN conspiracy or the next I hate Trump protest is gonna be. If today President Trump solved your greatest problem, cured cancer and eliminated all terrorisim, You’d find a reason to discount him or find a conspiracy to wash it away…….figure out a way to throw a pity party with Don Lemon and make it a failure.
    The more the left drown in their sorrows …….casts their self propelled agendas and try to give everything to those who are here ILLEGALLY before taking care of their own….this country becomes more divided. Yes that’s right The President isn’t dividing ….its the significant lack of respect the left has and how they promote hate, while attempting to disguise it as this wholesome peace train.

  12. What would Martin Niemöller write today?

    First Trump came for the women
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a woman.

    Then Trump came for the people with disabilities
    And I did not speak out
    Because I did not have a disability.

    Then Trump came for the African Americans
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not African American.

    Then Trump came for the Mexicans
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not Mexican.

    Then Trump came for the Muslims
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not Muslim.

    Then Trump came for the gay, bi, and trans people
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not gay, bi or trans.

    Then Trump came for the Jews
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Jew.

    Then Trump came for the journalists
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a journalist.

    Then Trump came for the judges
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a judge.

    And now Trump is coming for the Constitution of the United States
    And if I do not speak out, what am I?


  13. No worries there Barb. No worries there.
    Me and the rest of my active duty/veteran brothers and sisters and law enforcement enforcement brothers and sisters will stand down and let you and the rest of the fun bunch fight for the constitution, defend it against all enemies foreign and domestic, defend it with your life….. you ready to take that oath? I did. I have seen first hand what failed policy and government programs can do to a country, a community. You don’t want to be another me? Trust me ma’am you may not….but you do need me and more like me. You won’t admit it folks like you rarely do. In fact you may protest what me and others like me do…… that’s ok WE defend your 1st amendment right to do that. When something goes bump in the night and you call 911……another Filo Beto is going to show up to help you. If someone steals from you and you call the Law Enforcement agency of your choosing another Filo Beto is going to help you. God forbid you are ever in a situation where someone is physically hurting you and yes another Filo Beto comes to your screams and most likely going to hurt that someone…….. When the terrorist attack our nation ….a whole bunch of Filo Beto’s will get on a plane fly to where these people are and do Violence to them on your behalf so that you and your loved ones rest easy at home in your warm beds with your lattes comfortably bashing the Commander in Chief.
    So if you are telling me that President Trump is coming after the constitution, defend it. But make sure you have the muster, the facts and the evidence not some Don Lemon CNN leftist garbage…. because I will bet you …….all those Filo Beto’s do.

    • You sound like you are Colonel Nathan R. Jessep rather than Filo Beto. You really do! And for the record Filo, I do appreciate law enforcement and our men and women who serve in the military…….how could I not….I have been married to a Viet Nam Veteran for well on 50 years now as well as having many more members of my family proudly and bravely serve in the U.S. military. As a long time Tularean for well over 70 years I have always supported our local police chiefs and the rank and file officers. I praise them when they do good but I will speak out when I think that they are in the wrong. You think you are an American patriot……well so am I….. as a real patriot is someone who loves their country enough to speak up when they see something that needs to be changed; not someone who blindly assumes that their government knows best and is always right no matter what! But I will end this back and forth conversation with you by adding a big thank you for your service. Goodbye Filo.

  14. Most of the posters on this site are not well informed. First Devin was not originally a Trump supporter. He came to the game late in the day. I know this because I was a Trump supporter and I clashed with him a lot. When the arc of history is complete, Nunes and Admiral Rogers will be the heroes of our time. I am so pleased with his bravery that I, a 71 year old great grandmother, am volunteering to walk precincts if needed. However, he will be re elected handily next election.

    • Unfortunately you are probably correct …… but one can always hope that there are enough Republicans, Democrats, and Independents who will get out and vote who aren’t as enamored with Trump/Putin/Nunes as you seem to be. Tulare County has always been a red county but I never thought that it would be Russian Red.

  15. For those who choose to believe Trump, fined $10 MILLION in 2015 for money laundering violations, significant, wilful and longstanding, after repeated warnings from FinCEN, his SECOND fine for Taj Mahal money laundering, his Trump University FRAUD settled December 2016, his violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in the Trump Azerbaijan hotel- which SUPPORTS the Iran Revolutionary Guard over UNITED STATES INTELLIGENCE AGENCIES and the declassified version of the Assessment of Russian Activity and Intention in Election 2016, let it be known that YOU are not patriots. Oh, I forgot about the Trump SoHo fraud that ALMOST sent Ivanka and Jr to prison, until a Trump attorney gave a $50,000 ‘campaign donation’ to DA VANCE. The prosecutor had all the evidence needed to convict. A $25,000 donation wasn’t enough. Bayrock Group built Trump SoHo with Trump as a partner. Felix Sater is a Russian emigre with ties to organized crime. Russian organized crime. He is a convicted felon who slashed a man’s face with the stem of a broken margarita glass, he also was convicted of massive bank fraud and other financial crimes. Arif, the other partner in the now defunct Bayrock Group is a RUSSIAN OLIGARCH who fled jurisdiction for sex trafficking underage girls after being caught having a sex party on his yacht. Natalia Veselnitskya is a Russian attorney with ties to the Kremlin. Her SOLE purpose is lifting sanctions, specifically the Magnitsky Act President Obama imposed. Donald Jr gets an email saying it’s ultra sensitive offering dirt on Clinton. He responded “If it’s what you say it is, I love it, especially later in the summer”. Trump Jr released the emails and are hard proof that the Trump campaign was open to working with the Russians. He said if Trump was elected, they would ‘look’ at the Magnitsky Act. There WAS no dirt on Clinton, although the Russians looked long and hard. They want the $230 million Magnitsky uncovered, theft/fraud from Russian treasury. TILLERSON was awarded the highest honor Russia affords a foreigner- The Order of Friendship. Flynn worked for TURKEY while he was SUPPOSED to be working for The United States. Foreign agent. Accepted $35,000 for giving a speech in Russia, which he lied about. Paul Manafort made millions working a PRO PUTIN AGENDA in The Ukraine. Russia is currently under sanctions for their actions in The Ukraine. Trump went bankrupt in the 1990s, largely due to Taj Mahal Casino bankruptcy. However, he declared $98 million in losses and doesn’t have to pay taxes on the first $98 million made after this travesty. NO AMERICAN BANKS WOULD LOAN HIM MONEY. Eric Trump said they use RUSSIAN BANKS. Yes. Banks under SANCTIONS. Donald Jr said “Russians make up a pretty disproportionate amount… We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia”. Trump is a criminal who has committed multiple felonies including money laundering and fraud. He, along with Jeffrey Epstein were accused of raping a 13 year old girl. Epstein went to prison, Teflon Don didn’t. I could list FAR MORE but haven’t the time. Google The Assessment of Russian Activity and Intention in Election released 1/6/17. FBI, NSA, FBI and local law enforcement officials AGREED RUSSIA INTERFERED WITH THE ELECTION. WHY DOESN’T HE WANT TO INVESTIGATE A CYBER ATTACK PARAMOUNT TO AN ACT OF WAR? FYI: A SINGLE AMERICAN used #ReleaseTheMemo tag; RUSSIA pushed it using bots, bots assisted by humans and human trolls. AMERICANS retweeted RUSSIAN PROPAGANDA. I ALMOST voted for McCain until Sarah Palin came out with her vitriolic hate speech. Palin lowered the bar and Trump SLITHERED under it. Nunes is NEVER here, I live about a ten minute walk to his office. We’ve been asking for a town hall meeting since 2016. NO response, except for calling the police on the interfaith group of religious leaders who went to his Visalia office. RED certainly has a new meaning for the corrupt GOP who would rather protect TRUMP than investigate the Russian cyber attack. Serious stuff here. Trump SHOULD have DEMANDED an investigation FIRST PRIORITY. Instead he says PUTIN said he didn’t do it. Good enough. SURE. WHY doesn’t he want the Russian cyber attack investigation? Perhaps because he’s in the center of IT. People who have lived in NYC can’t believe Americans would elect Trump, they know of his devious financial crimes. I will walk neighborhoods, register everyone I can. Andrew Janz is going to be MY next representative. Tired of Nunes’ excuses when I write to Congress over issues such as Trump inviting DUTERTE to the White House. His extrajudicial ‘War on Drugs’ has murdered thousands of people in the streets. Vows to kill all three million ‘drug addicts’ who may be political dissidents who oppose his tyranny. He openly admires Hitler and said he wants to BE like him. Trump PRAISED DUTERTE’s war on drugs. Nunes response was to say ALL presidents meet with dictators. Trump Tower Philippines business partner with Trump is NOW SPECIAL ENVOY to the United States. Such corruption in The United States government is unprecedented. People are putting party over country, neighbors, friends and family. Trump RIGHTFULLY belongs in prison BEFORE the campaign even started. The GOP SAYS they are the law and order party, yet support a man who has committed multiple felonies including, but not limited to, money laundering, fraud and bribery. Nunes under investigation by the Ethics Committee, supposedly recused from the Russian investigation. I want to know WHO VETTED TRUMP and why dozens of people who are seeing classified intelligence WITHOUT security clearances? Don’t blame the FBI for the PORTER incident, they turned their report in April 20!7, plus several updates. Trump blames the victims and PLAYS the victim himself. SO disgusted by this mess. Democrats who didn’t clap are treasonous, but meeting with Russians for dirt on Clinton ISN’T? I’m confused after Charlottesville comments by ,Trump: WHICH flag? United States, Confederate, Nazi or Russian?

    • Ladies and Gentlemen–The Iceberg

      Posted on January 28, 2018 by Joseph Oldenbourg

      On January 18 the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence voted to publish the transcripts of testimony provided to the committee by Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson.

      Congressman Devin Nunes’ Communications Director, Jack Langer, emailed the transcript to the Valley Voice that afternoon.

      Simpson’s firm, Fusion GPS, was the outfit that contracted former British spy Christopher Steele to investigate the Russia side of the Trump/Russia equation. The result was the now famous dossier bandied about in the news media.

      Simpson testified for six hours before the committee on November 14, fielding questions and interpreting the dossier.

      Having read Simpson’s testimony, it is readily apparent that no commentary is necessary. The following, therefore, is lifted–in order–directly from the 165-page transcript. The elipsis are not for editorial purposes but to streamline the narrative.

      According to Simpson:

      One of the very first things that I focused on was Donald Trump’s relationship with a convicted racketeer named Felix Sater, and who was alleged to have an organized crime, Russian organized crime background.

      Over the course of the first phase…we developed a lot of additional information suggesting that the company that Donald Trump had been associated with and Felix Sater, Bayrock, was engaged in illicit financial business activity and had organized crime connections.

      …Mr. Trump had long time associations with Italian organized crime figures. And as we pieced together the early years of his biography, it seemed…during the early part of his career he had connections to a lot of Italian mafia figures, and then gradually during the nineties became associated with Russian mafia figures.

      And so all of that had developed by the spring of 2016 to the point where it was not a speculative piece of research; it was pretty well-established.

      …We also increasingly saw Mr. Trump’s business career had evolved over the prior decade into a lot of projects in overseas places, particularly in the former Soviet Union, that were very opaque, and that he had made a number of trips to Russia, but said he’d never done a business deal there. And I found that mysterious.

      …Lots of other issues came up during the primaries that raised concerns in my mind about whether there might be connections–Donald Trump might have unexplained connections to Russia or people involved in that part of the world.

      …The funding of Bayrock was, I think, much of what we initially were concerned about and focused on. The company seemed to have some sort of funding source from either Russia or the former Soviet Union that was opaque. So we spent a lot of time looking at the people around that and their backgrounds and why Mr. Trump would be in business with them.

      …The amazing number of people from the former Soviet Union who had purchased properties from Mr. Trump, including Dmitry Rybolovliev, who purchased a derelict estate at an extreme markup in Florida. And a number of other people bought into his properties.

      I guess the general thing I would say is that…the Russians are far more sophisticated in their criminal organized crime activities than the Italians, and they’re a lot more global. They understand finance a lot better. And so they tend to use quite elaborate methods to move money.

      …The offshore system has grown in sophistication in the last decade or so, too, so they’ve taken advantage of that.

      …If you can think of a way to launder money, the Russians are pretty good at it. But they specifically understand financial markets.

      …The thing that comes to mind, of course, is the real estate deals. And…it came to our attention…that there were a lot of real estate deals where you couldn’t really tell who was buying the property.

      …I think we saw patterns of buying and selling that we thought were suggestive of money laundering.

      …There was various criminals were buying the properties. So there was a gangster–a Russian gangster living in Trump Tower.

      His gangster name is Taiwanchik…These are the kind of things that prompted us to hire Mr. Steele.

      And when Mr. Trump went to the Miss Universe pageant in 2013, Taiwanchik was there in the VIP section with Mr. Trump and lots of other Kremlin biggies. So that kind of thing that raised questions with us.

      …The patterns of activity that we thought might be suggestive of money laundering were…fast turnover deals and deals where there seemed to have been efforts to disguise the identity of the buyer.

      …Some of the things that we…looked at that we thought were very concerning are existing investments in projects…specifically a project in Panama, the one in Toronto. These both got a lot of fraud associated with them, a lot of fraud allegations, a lot of activity that I would say smacks of fraud, and a lot of Russian mafia figures listed as buyers who may or may not have put money into it.

      The other one that is–was concerning to us was–is the golf courses in Scotland and Ireland.

      …We saw what Eric Trump said about Russian money being available…for the golf course projects, making remarks about having unlimited sums available.

      …Because the Irish courses and the Scottish are under UK…corporate law, they…file financial statements. And they don’t, on their face, show Russian involvement, but what they do show is enormous amounts of capital flowing into these projects from unknown sources and…it’s hundreds of millions of dollars. And these golf courses are just…sinks. They don’t actually make any money.

      …If you’re familiar with Donald Trump’s finances and the litigation over whether he’s really a billionaire…there’s good reason to believe he doesn’t have enough money to do this and that he would have had to have outside financial support for these things.

      …Well established in criminology now is that the Russian mafia is essentially under the dominion of the Russian Government and Russian Intelligence Services. And many of the oligarchs are also mafia figures.

      …Basically everyone in Russia works for Putin now.

      …Essentially, if people who seem to be associated with the Russian mafia are buying Trump properties or arranging for other people to buy Trump properties, it does raise a question about whether they’re doing it on behalf of the government.

      …One of the central mysteries of Donald Trump is that…beginning in the mid-2000s he was not a creditworthy businessman.

      …So if you’re analyzing…someone who says they’re a billionaire but can’t get a bank loan…there’s this whole issue of where is the credit coming from.

      I think that the evidence that has developed over the last year, since President Trump took office, is that there is a well-established pattern of surreptitious contacts that occurred last year that supports the broad allegation of some sort of an undisclosed political or financial relationship between the Trump Organization and people in Russia.

      …The first thing that I would do would be to subpoena the brokers and…the other people that were involved in the transactions, and the title companies and the other intermediaries that would have that kind of information.

      Then I would go to the banks next. But I actually think some of the intermediary entities in a lot of these transactions are going to be where a lot of the information is.

      …It’s these sort of intermediary entities that have no real interest in protecting the information, and all you have to do is ask for it and they just sort of produce it by rote.

      …All dollar transactions are generally cleared through New York…So…the main thing you have to do is identify the banks that were used.

      …By 2003, 2004, Donald Trump was not able to get bank credit…and if you’re a real estate developer and you can’t get bank loans…you’ve got a problem.

      And then ultimately…what we came to realize was that the money was actually coming out of Russia and going into his properties in Florida and New York and Panama and Toronto and these other places.

      One of the things we now know about how the condo projects were financed is that…you can get credit if you can show that you’ve sold a certain number of units.

      …So the real trick is to get people who say they’ve bought those units, and that’s where the Russians are to be found, in some of those pre-sales, is what they’re called. And that’s how…in Panama they got the credit of…they got…Bear Stearns to issue a bond by telling Bear Stearns that they’d sold a bunch of units…

      …There’s supposed to be contracts, down payments, all that sort of thing. So in the case of Panama where the evidence was most vivid…the buyers were fake. I mean, they were real people. They just never paid.

      This–it’s in the public records.

      President Donald Trump is an active member of the Russian mafia.

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