Edward Kimmel / Flickr elijah cummings...
Edward Kimmel / Flickr

Yeah, the irony, it’s practically dripping — i know.  But this is real, this is happening.

Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD), the top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee,  on Thursday asked the FBI to review Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump’s private email accounts to determine whether they shared or stored any classified information on the private server.

The Democratic congressman sent a letter to the FBI after reports from USA Today that Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump re-routed their personal email accounts to computers run by the Trump Organization.

The couple reportedly transferred their email accounts less than two days after Cummings and the rest of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform sent them letters directing them to not relocate or transfer the records on their private email accounts while the committee is investigating the private accounts.

Ok, so the deal is Jared and Ivanka in addition to their White House email address had a created a second set of private email accounts during the transition and used them for official government business while communicating with Trump associates. The White House has said this is not a problem because they compiled with regulations requiring them to forward copies of all official emails to their government account, and their attorney Abbie Lowell has said “fewer than 100 emails from January through August were either sent to or returned by Mr. Kushner to colleagues in the White House from his personal email account.”

Fewer than 100? Well, gee that couldn’t possibly be a problem.  Except that after they were specifically told not to transfer the accounts — they transferred the accounts.

This quite seriously seems like the Kushners quite deliberately performed this transfer to avoid scrutiny by the Committee — and that’s not not a small thing as Cummings writes.

“If these reports are accurate, they raise serious questions about your actions,” Cummings wrote to Trump and Kushner. “Although there may be legitimate reasons for transferring email accounts to different servers, neither you nor anyone from the White House contacted the Committee before you took these steps, despite the fact that you had received our letters before you reportedly took these actions.”

And this isn’t the first time the Kushners and Trumps have deliberate attempted to hide what they were really doing in various email exchanges. They’ve been here before.

In the spring of 2012, Donald Trump’s two eldest children, Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr., found themselves in a precarious legal position. For two years, prosecutors in the Manhattan District Attorney’s office had been building a criminal case against them for misleading prospective buyers of units in the Trump SoHo, a hotel and condo development that was failing to sell. Despite the best efforts of the siblings’ defense team, the case had not gone away. An indictment seemed like a real possibility. The evidence included emails from the Trumps making clear that they were aware they were using inflated figures about how well the condos were selling to lure buyers.

In one email, according to four people who have seen it, the Trumps discussed how to coordinate false information they had given to prospective buyers. In another, according to a person who read the emails, they worried that a reporter might be onto them. In yet another, Donald Jr. spoke reassuringly to a broker who was concerned about the false statements, saying that nobody would ever find out, because only people on the email chain or in the Trump Organization knew about the deception, according to a person who saw the email.

Ultimately this case was dropped and it totally had nothing to do with the $25,000 donation that Trump attorney Marc Kasowitz gave Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance Jr.  Nope, not a thing.

Kasowitz, who by then had been the elder Donald Trump’s attorney for a decade, is primarily a civil litigator with little experience in criminal matters. But in 2012, Kasowitz donated $25,000 to the reelection campaign of Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., making Kasowitz one of Vance’s largest donors. Kasowitz decided to bypass the lower level prosecutors and went directly to Vance to ask that the investigation be dropped. 

On May 16, 2012, Kasowitz visited Vance’s office at One Hogan Place in downtown Manhattan — a faded edifice made famous by the television show, “Law & Order.” Dan Alonso, the chief assistant district attorney, and Adam Kaufmann, the chief of the investigative division, were also at the meeting, but no one from the Major Economic Crimes Bureau attended. Kasowitz did not introduce any new arguments or facts during his session. He simply repeated the arguments that the other defense lawyers had been making for months.

So back then they magically got out of the jam they were in.  This time, they may not be so lucky.

P.S. Chief of Staff John Kelly previous cellphone before he was given a government issue phone has been hacked and compromised by a foreign government.

Coincidence? I think not.

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


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