Paul Manafort registering with the US government as foreign agent
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 13, 2017,
Apr 13, 2017, 20:39
Last August, a handwritten ledger surfaced in Ukraine with dollar amounts and dates next to the name of Paul Manafort, who was then Donald Trump's campaign chairman.
Manafort has recently been given guidance by federal authorities related to whether he should register as a foreign agent, Maloni said.
Complicating matters further, of course, is the fact that Manafort is also implicated in the United States government's current investigation into possible collusion between Trump associates and the Russian government during the 2016 presidential campaign.
Michael Flynn, who was sacked as White House national security adviser in February, has also had to register as a foreign agent for lobbying work he did with ties to Turkey.
The disclosure follows reporting by The Associated Press in August, citing emails obtained by the AP, that the firm of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his deputy Rick Gates, who served in a senior role in the Trump campaign, had overseen the lobbying effort, which sought to promote a Ukrainian political party's interests in Washington.
He did not deny that his consulting firm received the wire transactions, but he said they were "legitimate payments for political consulting work that was provided".
The so-called Black Ledger first surfaced last August and included the name of Manafort, who worked for the Russian political party as an global consultant for more than a decade in Ukraine, the report said.
Manafort is the second Trump campaign adviser to have to register as a foreign agent since the election.
Leshchenko contended to AP that Yanukovych, as Ukraine's leader, paid Manafort money that came from his government's budget and was "stolen from Ukrainian citizens". A foreign agent registration requires lobbying firms to disclose more details about their work than is required under the congressional registration, including the details of the lobbying contract, individual contacts with American officials and any attempts to influence US public opinion.
"The signature is not mine, and I didn't sell computers", he said in a statement.
The Podesta Group has previously acknowledged that Manafort's firm, DMP International, had provided guidance about the lobbying effort. What seems to be clear at this point is that Manafort has a lot of explaining to do, both to investigators in the Ukraine in terms of corruption, and to those in the United States, in terms of the role he may have had in the overall allegations of collusion between Russian Federation and the U.S. Either way, given the massive significance of the allegations on both sides, it's clear that citizens have a right to know exactly what has gone on, and the effect it may or may not have had on the outcome of the election and its resulting policies.
The new paperwork identified Obama administration officials, legislators, reporters and editorial writers whose offices the lobbyists contacted. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Sen.
"How many obscure European think tanks were able to hire sophisticated A-list lobbyists?" he said.