All sorts of questions have been raised about FBI special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian influence on the 2016 U.S. presidential election, especially since he’s stocked his office with mostly anti-Donald Trump and pro-Hillary Clinton lawyers.
But now a startling report indicates the probe of onetime Trump campaign chief Paul Manafort may lead not to a Russian link to Trump, but to the now twice-failed Democratic hopeful for the Oval Office, Clinton.
The Washington Post reported Tuesday the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee helped fund research that resulted in the now-famous dossier that is at the heart of the allegations of Trump collusion with Russia.
Now, Fox News Channel’s Tucker Carlson says he has a reliable source who has confirmed the Post story and provided additional information:
Carlson said the source formerly worked with Clinton allies John and Tony Podesta. John Podesta was Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign chief.
The source claims media allegations of “Russian collusion” with the Trump campaign are exaggerated.
Carlson declined to identify the source but assured his audience the source not only worked for the Podesta Group but also had access to information from Robert Mueller’s special-counsel investigation.
FoxNews.com said that while media reports describe Manafort as Trump’s main tie to the investigation, “the source said it is Manafort’s role as a liaison between Russia and the Podesta Group that is drawing the scrutiny.”
Carlson said the “vehicle” for which Manafort worked was a “sham” company with a headquarters listed in Belgium but with contact information linked to Kiev, Ukraine.
At a time when Barack Obama was president and Hillary Clinton was secretary of state, Manafort was “representing” Russian business and political interests.
The Podesta Group was in regular contact with Manafort during that time, the report said.
“Manafort was clear that Russia wanted to cultivate ties to Hillary,” said Carlson, noting it appeared likely at that time that she would succeed Obama in the White House.
The report said that in 2013, long before President Trump was considered a presidential contender, the Podesta organization hired David Adams, one of Clinton’s former deputies, setting up a channel between the company and Clinton.
It was during that time that the Uranium One deal “was being facilitated by the White House,” the report said. A panel on which Clinton sat approved the sale of 20 percent of American uranium reserves to a Kremlin-owned company at the same time that millions of dollars in donations were directed to the Clinton Foundation.
Carlson said the widespread assumption that the Russia probe is focusing on Trump is “mostly bogus,” according to the source.
‘British agent hired on behalf of Clinton camp’
The Washington Post’s report Tuesday said Marc Elias, a lawyer for the Hillary Clinton campaign and the party, hired Fusion GPS, a Washington firm, for the “research” that resulted in the dossier.
Then Fusion hired Christopher Steele, a former British agent who has ties to the FBI and others, to write it up.
The report said Elias and his law firm, Perkins Coie, long linked to President Obama, hired Fusion in 2016 “on behalf of the Clinton campaign and the DNC.”
The Post said that before then, and during the primary season, an unknown Republican had been paying for the research.
The Democrats’ support of Fusion ran nearly to Election Day in 2016, said the report, which cited unidentified sources.
Two congressional committees announced Tuesday they have launched investigations into the FBI’s handling of the case of Hillary Clinton’s use of an unsecure email server to send classified and top-secret information while she was secretary of state.
“Decisions made by the Department of Justice in 2016 have led to a host of outstanding questions that must be answered,” said Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., chairman of the House Judicial Committee.
The committee has joined with the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, led by Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., to investigate the FBI’s investigation of Clinton.
The Hill reported the two Republican leaders said they have “questions about the FBI’s decision to openly declare the bureau’s investigation into Clinton’s handling of classified information, while quietly investigating Trump campaign associates.”
They also want to know, according to The Hill, why the FBI “decided to formally notify Congress of the Clinton probe on two separate occasions; why the FBI – rather than the Justice Department – recommended that Clinton not be charged after the investigation concluded; and the reasoning behind their timeline for announcing such decisions.”
Further, two House committees said they are looking into Hillary Clinton’s involvement in the Uranium One “pay-for-play” scandal, an episode that Hillary Clinton described this week as “baloney.”
Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, announced Tuesday he is working with the House Oversight Committee to learn whether an FBI investigation was under way when the Obama administration signed off on the 2010 Uranium One deal, the Washington Times reported.
Talk-radio star Rush Limbaugh said Monday he believes one of the objectives of Mueller’s Russia investigation is “to protect anybody and everybody that had anything to do with this Clinton-Obama-Russian uranium deal.”
The probe by Mueller – who served as FBI director during the agency’s Russia-uranium investigation – is not only an effort to “find anything impeachable on Trump,” Limbaugh said.
“I think that they’re taking advantage of the opportunity to shield and prevent any investigation or knowledge of what really went on, because that uranium thing, we’ve all, up ’til now, considered it a Hillary and Bill Clinton and Russian deal where the Clintons personally profited from brokering the sale of a percentage of our uranium supply to Russia.”
Limbaugh said none of it “could have happened without the involvement of Obama, and so you couple that with the inescapable conclusion that the collusion story has moved off of Trump colluding with Russia.”