Subpoenas were going to fly at some point because that’s the way Donald Trump rolls. And let’s face it, there was no way Trump managed to kick off one of the most corrupt presidencies in history without some super shady inaugural dealings. Now federal prosecutors in Manhattan have subpoenaed Trump’s inaugural committee in search of documentation about its donors and finances.
Specifically, the New York Times writes, prosecutors are seeking information about “the committee’s donors and event attendees; any benefits handed out, including tickets and photo opportunities with the president; federal disclosure filings; vendors; contracts; and more, one of the people said.
If scrutiny of Trump’s inaugural committee strikes a familiar chord, that’s because several recent articles have detailed inquiries into the fund. Federal prosecutors in Brooklyn have reportedly been looking at whether foreign nations in the Middle East, including Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, made illegal contributions to the inaugural fund.
An unusual influx of pro-Russian Ukrainians at Trump’s inaugural celebration has also attracted the attention of special counsel Robert Mueller. The Ukrainian lawmakers and businessmen reportedly brushed elbows with GOP lawmakers and Trump allies, offering them help on brokering some sort of pro-Russian peace plan in Ukraine that would deescalate tensions with the U.S. over Russia’s annexation of Crimea.
So count ’em up—that’s a swirl of activity from federal prosecutors in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the special counsel’s office. While the Brooklyn inquiry is more focused on potential illegal donations from foreigners, the Manhattan investigation is homing in on whether Trump’s inaugural committee made false reports regarding donations to the Federal Election Commission. The Manhattan inquiry reportedly stems from the investigation into Trump’s former lawyer and fixer, Michael Cohen.
One way or the other, that’s a lot of scrutiny and now there’s subpoenas in the mix. Trump’s inauguration may not have been the biggest ever, but perhaps he’ll snag a different type of distinction out of this yet.