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News Foreign Policy Monday, Aug 15 2016

Is Trump's Chief Adviser Accessing Classified Intel While On Foreign Nationals' Payroll?

Aug 15, 2016

At his foreign policy speech today, Trump said he’d want to have a closer relationship with Russia.

Is it because Paul Manafort, Donald Trump’s chief adviser, reportedly received millions of off-the-books dollars from Ukraine’s pro-Putin political party and had an office in Kiev as recently as May 2016?

Either way, Manafort’s reported ties to pro-Russia factions raise some serious questions:

  • Is Manafort still consulting the party and receiving off-books-payments from the party, even as Trump’s begun to receive classified security briefings?

  • Should Manafort be barred from accessing classified intelligence, given the possibility of serious conflicts of interest?

  • Does Trump himself have deeper, undisclosed ties to Ukraine and Russia? And might the existence of such ties explain his campaign’s push for a pro-Russia GOP platform and shift to pro-Putin talking points on Crimea? (Trump could clear this last one up by releasing his tax returns.)

Paul Manafort and others in Trump’s campaign have repeatedly lied to the media — why should anyone believe Manafort’s dismissal of this weekend’s damning New York Times report as “unfounded, silly and nonsensical“?

Published: Aug 15, 2016

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