Fri. Feb 26th, 2021

The most famous saying is Scams in Washington probably “follow the money.” Disappointingly, if not surprisingly, Congressional Republicans seem resistant to doing so, when it comes to President Donald Trump and an investigation into Russia’s interference in the American political system.

“I’m not seeing the link at this stage,” Rep. Mike Conway, a Texas Republican leading the House Russia investigation, told CNN. “Deutsche Bank is a German bank – I don’t see collusion.”

When asked about the discovery of Russian-Trump trade transactions, Conway was not moved. “I bet every big bank has a Russian customer somewhere,” he said.

Well, every big bank can have Russian customers somewhere. But there are some things that set Deutsche Bank apart in this regard. For one thing, it was fined $ 630 million In January 2017 to join a $ 10 billion Russian money-laundering scheme. For another, the bank was washing Russian cash from time to time, paying huge sums of money to reality television star and real estate developer Donald Trump. Deutsche Bank itself is the Nexus, in other words. As one clearly knows, let alone the Russia investigation, Conway must know these things.

According to a December 2016 analysis by Bloomberg, Trump almost owed the German bank $ 300 million Because he was ready to assume the presidency. Luke Harding of The Guardian states in his book “Collusion: Secret meetings, dirty money, and how Russia helped Donald Trump win,“This loan was not only unprecedented, but also bizarre: it had borrowed money from Deutsche’s private money division, a $ 330 million loan using money that it defaulted from the bank’s real estate division.” Asked if this was normal. Giving more money to a customer who was a bad credit risk and litigator, a former senior Deutsche Bank staff member said: ‘Are you [expletive] Kidding me? ” Harding wrote.

Cartoons on President Trump and Russia

And the fact of its own debt is something that Congress should keep regardless of Russia’s connections. As Harding writes:

This was an unprecedented sum for the incoming president and which raised strange questions about conflict of interest. If Deutsche Bank were to fall into regulatory difficulty, one of the investigating bodies was the Department of Justice. Which gave information to Trump. It was difficult to see how the department could function. Or how Deutsche Bank can take legal action against a chairman if he misses again.

But the Russia connection adds immediacy to the Deutsche Nexus. Everyone is interested in whether or not Trump has ever indulged in immoral sexual acts with Russian prostitutes, with financial intelligence being another classic method for secret intelligence bases for foreign intelligence agencies. And as long as he has long denied Russian business entanglements, including public records 2008 famous announcement of Donald Trump Jr. “Russians make a very proportionless cross-section of a lot of our assets. We pour a lot of money from Russia,” something else indicates. As David Ignatius of the Washington Post put it up last November: “What’s clear, reviewing the facts, is that Trump claims he has had nothing to do with Russia for years” is nonsense. “

Many precise details of any Trump financial system with Russia remain a mystery, not in any small part because he refuses to follow the long-standing tradition of presidential candidates and presidents, which his Issuing tax returns – a decision with which his Republican Congress defenses appear to be completely easy.

None of it proves that Trump is about financial relations with Russia. But here’s the thing: You can’t know what you’re going to find until you look. And at least there’s enough smoke to see and see if something is on fire – this is not some random fishing campaign, as Republicans dismiss it, where Democrats want to open Trump’s books without any legitimate basis . (Although again, refusing to disclose their tax returns is sufficient in itself.)

Trump has said that looking at his finances qualifies as a red line that would be unfair to cross, and seems incredibly content to follow his lead on the Republican theme.

Another fascinating quote: Trey Gowdy, the president of the House Government Reform, told POLITICO: “Isn’t that what Bob Mueller is doing?” By stating that such an argument would make it clear that Congress would completely drop any investigation in Russia, the answer is: Yes.

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