Who is Felix Sater? A convicted criminal

The man at the center of the latest bombshell reports on the Russia scandal is a convicted felon. As a young stockbroker in 1991, Felix Sater stabbed a man in a Manhattan bar and was subsequently sentenced to prison and effectively barred from selling securities by the National Association of Securities Dealers. Later, he was implicated in a Mafia-connected stock manipulation scheme in 1998.  Despite that fact, Sater went on to work Donald Trump throughout the 2000s, partnering with him on the scandal-plagued Trump Soho and Fort Lauderdale projects that were the subject of various lawsuits.

Sater is also a former executive of the Bayrock Group, a scandal-plagued real estate firm that worked extensively with the Trump Organization. And as reported in the last 24 hours, on an unsuccessful project in Moscow, Sater advised Trump Organization lawyer Michael Cohen to email Vladimir Putin’s top press aide for help in expediting the […]

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What’s Putin Have On Trump?

“What does Putin have on Trump?” is a question we’ve asked for over a year now

The full story still isn’t yet out there, but we now know that during the 2016 election, President Trump was personally involved in pursuing a Russian real estate deal, and that Trump’s aides directly contacted the Kremlin seeking assistance from Vladimir Putin.

Trump and his associates subsequently for months denied any such interactions took place, putting themselves at the mercy of Putin, who knew they were lying to the American public and had the documentation to back it up. In other words, Putin probably has plenty of blackmail material and is likely using this leverage to shape what Trump does in the White House. 

To repeat: a U.S. presidential candidate during the course of the election sought to enlist a foreign government in a business deal to enrich himself, and later, a quid pro […]

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Pence Plays Coy On Russian Collusion, But His Denial Still Doesn’t Hold Up 

Mike Pence tried to play coy when CNN asked the Vice President about communication between the Trump campaign and Russia.  But his evasive, half-hearted denials don’t hold up to scrutiny. The facts that have surfaced about contacts between Trump officials and Russia directly contradict the White House’s ever changing rhetoric, and the Vice President’s denials are impossible to believe. More likely is that he’s knee-deep in the scandal just like other members of the administration, he knows this, and now he’s trying to distance himself.

“Vice President Pence can’t escape the Russia scandal that is rapidly tainting every member of the Trump campaign and White House. Pence can try to brush the evidence aside, but the fact is that he was cheering when Wikileaks published emails stolen by Russian hackers, and as head of the Trump transition, he turned a blind eye to warnings about Michael Flynn. When all […]

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FBI’s Manafort Raid Required Probable Cause And Other Important Context For Today’s Trump Russia Bombshell

The FBI would have needed to show probable cause or  – “information sufficient to warrant a prudent person’s belief … evidence of a crime or contraband would be found” to obtain the warrant to raid Manafort’s home, per the Oxford Companion to American Law.

Here are five other things to keep in mind while reading about this bombshell from the Washington Post:

1.  In 2015, things were not looking great for Manafort’s finances. He reportedly owed millions debt to a close friend of Putin.

2.  Shortly after Donald Trump announces his campaign, Manafort volunteers to work for Donald Trump ‘s campaign for free and was eventually hired in March of 2016.

3.  Trump’s positions on Russia – and the Republican Party platform – start to change in Putin’s favor shortly after Manafort takes a formal role in the campaign.

4. Manafort is part of a meeting literally billed as being […]

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What Just Happened

​Here’s what we learned about the ongoing Russia scandal in the last hour: 

1. WSJ: Special Counsel Robert Mueller impaneled a grand jury in Washington DC. Legal experts agree this will help Mueller subpoena records and testimony from witnesses. 

“Special Counsel Robert Mueller has impaneled a grand jury in Washington to investigate Russia’s interference in the 2016 elections, a sign that his inquiry is growing in intensity and entering a new phase, according to two people familiar with the matter. The grand jury, which began its work in recent weeks, is a sign that Mr. Mueller’s inquiry is ramping up and that it will likely continue for months. Mr. Mueller is investigating Russia’s efforts to influence the 2016 election and whether President Donald Trump’s campaign or associates colluded with the Kremlin as part of that effort. […] Grand juries are powerful investigative tools that allow prosecutors to subpoena documents, put witnesses under […]

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WATCH: 6 Times Trump’s Lawyer Misled Americans About The President’s Role In The Donald Jr. Cover Up

The President’s lawyer was asked SIX times – and lied every time – about Donald Trump’s knowledge of his son’s meeting with a Russian lawyer who promised the Trump campaign dirt about Hillary Clinton in 2016. Last night we learned that not only was Trump aware of the meetings well before the White House suggested, but that Trump was also leading the effort to cover-up and lie to the public about Junior’s role in the scandal.

“Donald Trump is the most corrupt, untrustworthy President we’ve ever known,” said Shripal Shah, Vice President of American Bridge. “His personal involvement in the cover-up of his son’s potentially criminal behavior, and his legal team’s subsequent lies about what the President knew and when, is just the latest proof point.”
Jay Sekulow: Got To Be Clear, The President Wasn’t Aware Of The Meeting, Did Not Participate In The Meeting, Did Not Attend The Meeting And Was Only Made […]

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Bridge Project Highlights Jeff Sessions’ Ties to Russia in New Episode of Web Series

Ahead of the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Russian interference in European elections, Bridge Project is releasing a new digital ad in its ongoing web series that outlines the numerous ties between officials in Donald Trump’s inner circle and Russian oligarchs, gangsters, alleged spy-masters, and Vladimir Putin.

Attorney General and Trump confidante Jeff Sessions is the focus of the newest episode, which chronicles his transformation from leading Russia hawk in the Senate to lying under oath about multiple secret meetings he had with the Russianambassador in 2016.

Watch the ad here.

“Jeff Sessions suddenly abandoned his decades-old hawkish views on Russia when he joined Donald Trump’s campaign and wound up Attorney General. The looming question now is finding out what he told the Russian ambassador during their secret meetings in 2016 that was so bad he tried to cover it up by lying under oath,” said American Bridge Rapid Response Director Emily Aden. “This scandal has engulfed the President and those closest to him and […]

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Bridge Project Highlights Jared Kushner’s Ties to Russia in New Episode of Web Series

Ahead of former FBI Director James Comey’s testimony today, Bridge Project is releasing a new digital ad in its ongoing web series that outlines the numerous ties between officials in Donald Trump’s inner circle and Russian oligarchs, gangsters, alleged spy-masters, and Vladimir Putin. This episode focuses on Jared Kushner, the President’s son-in-law and the Secretary of Everything.

Watch the ad here.

Jared Kushner is the first current member of the White House staff reported to be a focus of the FBI’s investigation. Kushner also has failed to disclose meetings with the Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak and the chief of the state owned Vnesheconombank, who was handpicked by Vladimir Putin. He even suggested setting up a private line of communication between the Trump transition team and Russia.

“Jared Kushner is one of the most influential people in Trump’s orbit and coincidentally is also right in the thick of this scandal,” said […]

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NEW BRIDGE PROJECT DIGITAL CAMPAIGN: Trump’s Nixonian Abuses of Power

Following Donald Trump’s firing of FBI Director James Comey, a move that experts have called an unprecedented abuse of power and an obvious attempt to obstruct justice, Bridge Project is releasing a new digital ad highlighting the dangerous Nixonian ways of Donald Trump. The 60-second digital ad highlights how Trump may have created a constitutional crisis, even bigger than Watergate, driven by the fact that the White House under Trump is operating as if they are above the law. The campaign will run on  social media channels over the next week.
“Donald Trump’s firing of FBI Director James Comey has created a constitutional crisis that is bigger than Watergate,” said American Bridge President Jessica Mackler. “This unprecedented abuse of power and attempt to obstruct justice only furthers the need for a truly independent investigation even clearer. The American people deserve accountability, transparency and the truth about the Trump campaign’s ties to Russian hackers […]

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Bridge Project to Re-Air Russia Investigation Ads Against Heller and Flake

Following Donald Trump’s reckless firing of FBI Director James Comey, putting the FBI’s investigation into Trump’s ties to Russia in jeopardy, American Bridge is re-airing its ads against Sen. Dean Heller and Sen. Jeff Flake.

The 15-second digital ads condemn Heller and Flake’s refusal to call for a independent commission to investigate Trump and his associates’ ties to Russia. The ads will air on YouTube and other social media over the next week.

Statement by American Bridge President Jessica Mackler:

“What exactly are Dean Heller and Jeff Flake waiting for? It is long past time for Senator Heller and Senator Flake to support an independent commission to investigate Donald Trump’s ties to Russia.

“This unprecedented interference by Trump into the FBI’s Russia investigation makes the need for a truly independent investigation even clearer. Republicans like Dean Heller and Jeff Flake who stay silent now are guilty of moral […]

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