RussiaGate: Hillary Clinton and John Podesta's Troubling Ties to Russia
Peter Schweizer, president of the Government Accountability Institute and the author of “Clinton Cash,” explained on Fox News Tuesday how a Russia connection to the Clinton campaign and Obama presidency is much bigger and more troubling than anything Democrats have accused Team Trump of.
During his appearance on “Fox & Friends,” Schweizer alleged that Clinton campaign chair John Podesta probably violated federal law when he failed to disclose his stock holdings in a Kremlin-funded company.
“In 2011, John Podesta joins the board of this very small energy company called Joule Energy based out of Massachusetts," Schweizer said. "About two months after he joins the board, a Russian entity called Rusnano puts a billion rubles -- which is about 35 million dollars -- into John Podesta’s company. Now, what is Rusnano? Rusnano is not a private company, Steve. It is a fund directly funded by the Kremlin. In fact, the Russian science minister called Rusnano Putin’s child. So you have the Russian government investing in one of John Podesta’s businesses in 2011, while he is an advisor to Hillary Clinton at the State Department.”
"Does anyone in Trump's circle rise to the level where there's this kind of money involved?" asked host Steve Doocy.
Schweizer answered that he hadn't seen anything like that yet. "Nobody that has an advisory role in the White House has had this money exchange. And certainly the money hasn't exchanged as far as we know while they have been advising the president," he said, pointing out that while he was an advisor in the Obama White House, Podesta owned stock shares with "Putin's Child" and failed to disclose it.
“So then in 2013, he goes to the White House, to be a special counselor to Barack Obama, and that requires that you, you know, have financial disclosures every year," he explained. "In his financial disclosure form in 2013, he not only fails to disclose these 75,000 shares of stock that he has in Joule Energy, which is funded in part by the Russian government. He also fails to disclose that he is on one of the three corporate boards that this entity has. It’s got this very complex ownership structure. He discloses he is on the company in Massachusetts, that is he on the board of a company in the Netherlands, but he fails to disclose that he is also on the executive board of the holding company. That’s a clear violation of the disclosure rules that I think needs to be looked at.”
He added, “What makes the Podesta case clear is there was a transfer of money and there was a transfer of a lot of money that stood to make John Podesta a lot of money. That is unique and that’s extremely troubling because at the time that transfer is taking place he is advising Hillary Clinton at the State Department. We know that from the Podesta emails that he is helping her make personnel decisions, speech decisions, policy decisions. He is meeting with her monthly. It’s a transfer of money from a foreign government, at the time that he is advising America’s chief diplomat, Hillary Clinton.”
In a piece earlier this month at Fox News, Schweizer acknowledged that examining the business ties between Russia and those in President Donald Trump’s orbit is "a legitimate exercise" while pointing out the glaring double standard in the way the stories have been reported. "Those sounding the loudest alarm bells over Russian influence in U.S. politics were curiously silent when far greater concerns were raised about the Clintons," he said.
Unlike the revelations so far concerning Russian ties in the Trump camp, the Clinton deals involved hundreds of millions of dollars and enormous favors that benefitted Russian interests.
Bill and Hillary Clinton received large sums of money directly and indirectly from Russian officials while Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State. Bill Clinton was paid a cool $500,000 (well above his normal fee) for a speech in Moscow in 2010. Who footed the bill? An investment firm in Moscow called Renaissance Capital, which boasts deep ties to Russian intelligence. The Clinton Foundation itself took money from Russian officials and Putin-connected oligarchs. They also took donations from:
- Viktor Vekselberg, a Putin confidant who gave through his company, Renova Group
- Andrey Vavilov, a former Russian government official who was Chairman of SuperOx, a research company that was part of the “nuclear Cluster” at the Russian government’s Skolkovo research facility
- Elena Baturina, the wife of the former Mayor of Moscow, who apparently gave them money through JSC Inteco, an entity that she controls
Then there is the glaring fact that the Clinton Foundation also scored $145 million in donations from nine shareholders in a Canadian uranium company called Uranium One that was sold to the Russian government in 2010. The deal required the approval of several federal government agencies, including Hillary Clinton’s State Department. The deal allowed Rosatom, the Russian State Nuclear Agency, to buy assets that amounted to 20 percent of American uranium. Rosatom, by the way controls the Russian nuclear arsenal.
Equally troubling: some of those donations were hidden and not disclosed by the Clintons. President Obama required the Clinton Foundation to disclose all contributions as a condition of Hillary Clinton becoming Secretary of State. But that did not happen. The only reason the hidden donations ever came to light is because we uncovered them by combing through Canadian tax records.
Everyone got what they wanted in this deal: the uranium investors made a nice profit; the Russians acquired a strategic asset; and the Clinton Foundation bagged a lot of money.
Oddly enough, the mainstream media isn't interested in looking into any of this because they're too busy focusing like a laser beam on minor crumbs they think can feed their anti-Trump Russia conspiracy theories.