Book Catalog / Flickr trump russia...
Book Catalog / Flickr

A CNBC report reminds us that there’s still money to follow in #TrumpRussia.  Circuitous paths describe the flow of data (and money) in the 2016 Trump campaign that parallels the entry and exit of various campaign staff. The subsequent payments in 2017 have now become interesting to the House Judiciary committee, as we got a peek at what Mueller might be investigating.

There is a documented path for the Trump polling data that Paul Manafort transferred to Konstantin Kilimnik and the GRU. The data may have been created or modified by Tony Fabrizio who has already talked to Mueller’s people. He runs Multi-Media Services Corp. (Firm-A).

What remains an open question although there’s a hint in the Roger Stone prosecution, is how transactional was data sharing with non-American agents, considering the variety of data involved: stolen emails, voter data, user profiles.

Remember that 2016 targeting data used in a variety of ways (ads, social media, event planning) was probably shared more widely among sub-contractors in the Trump campaign including what now appears to be Russian elements.

Regardless, the network of these principals is better known and the corresponding money and/or data flows have become interesting to Mueller and Congress, even if some only became known because some lawyers were negligent about redacting documents.

The route this money traveled, from its origin as a donation made to a pro-Trump political group, to its final destination in the bank account of Manafort’s attorney, offers a window into relationships Manafort built over decades.

Washington (CNN) Special counsel Robert Mueller sought information directly last year from one of Donald Trump’s campaign pollsters who is also a former business associate of Paul Manafort’s.

Mueller’s team met with pollster Tony Fabrizio in February 2018, an interview that has not been previously reported and takes on new significance after Manafort’s attorneys revealed Tuesday that Mueller’s team is still interested in how Manafort shared polling data with his Russian intelligence-linked colleague.

  • CNN journalists observed Fabrizio leaving the special counsel’s office on the first of February last year and have since confirmed he was meeting with Mueller’s team. At the time, the special counsel had been digging into Manafort’s finances and political work ahead of his trial.

In a filing Tuesday, Manafort’s attorneys tried to redact the fact that prosecutors knew Manafort shared polling data related to the 2016 presidential election with his Russian intelligence-linked associate Konstantin Kilimnik while Manafort was running Trump’s presidential campaign. The information was supposed to remain secret because it’s part of an ongoing investigation, but it was revealed because of a formatting error in the filing.

Fabrizio’s involvement with Mueller is intriguing because he’s one of the few people in Manafort’s orbit with knowledge of the inner-workings of the Trump campaign as well as Manafort’s Eastern European connections.
The rapid succession of these hirings — first Manafort to chair the campaign, then Fabrizio to poll for the campaign, then Gay to run Rebuilding America Now, then Fabrizio’s ad-buying firm to buy the airtime for Rebuilding America Now — offer a striking example of how Manafort turned his unpaid role on the Trump campaign into an opportunity to secure lucrative work for his longtime associates.…

Fabrizio’s hiring as Trump’s pollster (May 2016) came as a surprise to political analysts, pointing to Trump’s past opposition to pollsters, with Trump stating in an interview with Chuck Todd on Meet the Press, “I don’t have pollsters. I don’t want to waste money on pollsters. I don’t want to be unreal. I want to be me. I have to be me.”[11] … Fabrizio is also longtime friends with former Trump advisers Paul Manafort and Roger Stone.[14]…

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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.


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