Men accused of making illegal donations to Clinton’s 2016 campaign blame Trump for it

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Portions of this article contain editorial content which is the opinion of the writer. 

WASHINGTON, DC- When all else fails, blame Donald Trump.

Such is the case of a California businessman, on trial for conspiring to illegally donate over $3 million to support Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential race.

According to Megan Church, attorney for Rani El-Saadi, her client broke the law because he feared the so-called “Muslim travel ban” Trump promised to impose would destroy his travel-oriented business, Politico reports.

“He believed that his contribution to Hillary Clinton’s campaign would save his business,” Church said.

“His company catered to clients who were travelers from Muslim-majority countries in the Middle East—the same people Mr. Trump intended to ban from the U.S.A. A Trump presidency posed a fatal threat to Mr. El-Saadi’s business. That’s why he donated.”

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El-Saadi paid $150,000 to attend a Clinton fundraiser in Las Vegas in 2016, however did so on behalf of Andy Khawaja, a digital payments tycoon who secretly gave El-Saadi the money.

“This is a case about a large-scale conspiracy to funnel well in excess of $1 million into the U.S. political system—money that came from the United Arab Emirates,” prosecutor Michelle Parikh told jurors.

The scheme appears to have been the brainchild of Khawaja, who founded a company called Allied Wallet. Khawaja, born in Lebanon is reported to be a multi-billionaire and reportedly lives a lavish lifestyle, full of private jets, luxury hotels and fancy cars, Politico said.

While jurors in the case know he is not in the courtroom, they don’t know the reason why—he’s been fighting extradition in Lithuania for over two years; trial judge Randy Moss has declared him a fugitive.

“Khawaja wanted very badly to gain power and influence in the U.S.,” Parikh said.

In addition to El-Saadi, five other men have been charged in the case and have cooperated with the prosecution, having pleaded guilty.

The first prosecution witness, former Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee fundraiser Diane Hamwi, said Khawaja hired her for $7500 a month in the spring of 2016 to advise him on how to gain access to American politicians.

“He hired me to help him develop more relationships in the political sphere. I was ensuring that when he made the large contributions he was making that he was getting the most for that,” Hamwi said.

“The amounts that people were writing were quite large for first-time donors.”

Hamwi told jurors that after Hillary Clinton had attended the 2016 donor event, Clinton fundraiser Stephanie Smith asked Khawaja to pony up more cash for the campaign, however Hamwi intervened.

“I am asking you not to ask Andy to raise any more money,” Hamwi wrote to Smith, who asked her why the spigot had to be turned off. “Because I did not know who it would come from,” she said.

“At this point, we were very close to Election Day and it was very important to know who was writing large checks,” Hamwi said.

She then detailed to jurors what happened when the FBI showed up at her door.

“The FBI was insinuating that the money they contributed was not their money and Andy was saying that they can do whatever they want with the bonus money he gives them,” Hamwi continued.

“I sort of was speechless to be honest. What he just said did not sound kosher to me. He just admitted he gave them money.”

Hamwi also expressed “surprise” when Khawaja told her he could get close to $1 million from people he knew in the Las Vegas area. When just a few checks started coming in for $100,000 or more, she said she found it curious that most of the donors appeared to be novices.

“The amounts that people were writing were quite large for first-time donors,” she said.

Parikh explained to jurors that the millions donated to Clinton and more than $1 million donated to Republicans after Donald Trump won originated in the UAE, however she did not revisit an allegation made earlier last week before the jury was empaneled—that the money had actually originated from the UAE government.

Parikh noted that both the Clinton and Republican committees were “unsuspecting” that the money forked over by donors with little or no prior track record of political giving actually originated with others.

While typically jurors in such cases have difficulty realizing the seriousness of such “straw” campaign donations absent some type of quid pro quo, Parikh argued there are “good reasons” why it’s against the law to donate other people’s money under your name. “Our political system is premised on transparency,” she said.

An interesting side note that came forth during the trial was when it was revealed how Hamwi and Khawaja first met—at a breakfast fundraiser for then-President Barack Obama at the Brentwood home of “Spider Man” actor Tobey Maguire.

A co-defendant being tried along with El-Saadi is Las Vegas resident Mohammad Diab, Khawaja’s cousin who did work on behalf of Allied Wallet in the United States.

In an amusing allegation, Diab’s attorney, Harland Braun suggested to jurors that the reason his client was on trial was because of a political vendetta against Hillary Clinton. Only moments later, Braun seemed to back away from that contention.

Braun went on what can only be described as a fairly unhinged opening statement, pointing at prosecutors, and blaming them for the U.S.’s convoluted campaign finance laws.

“They have to work in the system these people created,” he said, pointing at prosecutors.

Braun also noted that the political system in the U.S. is flush with cash, and that ultra-wealth donors can legally give much more than the sums at issue in the Khawaja case. He may be onto something if you look at the mega millions tech oligarch Mark Zuckerberg used to help sway the 2020 election.

“The best government money can buy,” he said.

In order to earn convictions in the case, prosecutors will need to show the men not only made illegal donations, but they knew they were breaking the law.

https://fundourpolice.com/

For more on funky donations involving Democrats, we invite you to:

DIG DEEPER

This article contains editorial content which is the opinion of the writer.  

WASHINGTON, DC- Remember the swamp Donald Trump warned you about? In case you didn’t know, the swamp is alive and well and living in the campaign coffers of Joe Biden.

Western Journal reports that a major donor to the Biden campaign just scored a $500 million loan from the federal government.

On December 7, the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), a federal agency that is supposed to provide infrastructure financing to developing countries, donated the cash to Arizona-based First Solar to build a plant in India. Walmart heir Lukas Walton owns first Solar.

The agency issued a release in which they said they were “thrilled to be in a position to support First Solar’s new venture in India…vertically integrated photovoltaic solar modular manufacturing…”

The release conveniently forgot to mention however that they are a significant donor to Biden’s presidential campaign.

Aside from First Solar, it was also revealed that Walton, an heir to the Walmart fortune, donated over $300,000 to the Biden campaign and over $100,000 to the Democratic National Committee, according to the Washington Free Beacon. Which is the party of big business and billionaires again?

All of this caught the attention of two Republicans on the House Oversight Committee, Reps. James Comer (KY) and Ralph Norman (S.C.), ranking member on the environmental subcommittee. Both lawmakers have asked to see DFC records on the First Solar loan.

“The loan, which is DFC’s ‘largest single debt financing transaction,’ raises questions about the involvement of political considerations in the analysis and decision-making processes at the DFC,” the two lawmakers said in a letter to the DFC.

Comer and Norman are asking for records of any communications between the DFC and the White House where First Solar was discussed. They are also seeking communications involving Walton or individuals representing him.

“Given Mr. Walton’s extensive history [of] fundraising for Democrats, this loan raises questions about what role his political contributions may have played in DFC’s decision to grant this loan,” the congressmen wrote.

The Free Beacon reached out to First Solar for comment, and were referred to the DFC, which declined to respond.

In addition to the campaign finance donations to Biden, the lawmakers are also interested in a class action lawsuit filed on Jan. 7 by First Solar shareholders where they allege company executives released misleading information and inflated the stock price.

The lawsuit, filed by the Pontiac, Michigan employees pension fund claims that a First Solar solar module was “grossly underperforming and was unable to hit its wattage targets.”

The claims issued by First Solar boosted 2019 stock prices, and eventually caused investors to lose money, the Free Beacon reported.

The company settled in 2020 with two U.K. pension fund stockholders, who filed a lawsuit in which they alleged First Solar’s misleading financial statements inflated stock prices between 2008 and 2012. The settlement netted the claimants $350 million.

Prior to 2019, the DFC was known as the Overseas Private Investment Corporation which had “a history of deals gone bad when mixing taxpayer dollars with politically connected entities like First Solar,” said Tom Anderson, director of the Government Integrity Project at the National Legal and Policy Center in a statement to the Free Beacon.

“This agency has a history of favoring entities backed by huge political contributors, like First Solar, by giving them less scrutiny while prioritizing politically connected projects above entities and individuals who are not politically active,” Anderson said.

However a spokesman for DCF, who asked not to be named, told the Free Beacon the deal had “absolutely nothing to do with politics.” Of course not.

First Solar was previously put under a microscope by House Republicans in 2012, with House Oversight Committee members at that time reviewing loans made by the Obama administration to solar companies, including the politically-connected Solyndra, which went bankrupt and defaulted on a $500 million federal loan.

All told, First Solar received some $3 billion in loan guarantees from the Obama administration despite the fact they were not qualified to receive them, Republicans alleged at the time.

In addition, in 2010, when it was known as OPIC, the agency facilitated a $10 million loan to a Hillary Clinton donor while she served as Secretary of State. However instead of using the money for a Haiti relief program, the donor kept it, leading to being sent to prison for fraud, the Free Beacon said.

But remember, this has “nothing to do with politics.”

The current loan was included under the so-called “Build Back Better World” program launched by the Biden administration.

But it has “nothing to do with politics.”

Two men arrested and charged with the attempted murder of a Chicago cop after shooting him during a traffic stop

For more on the swamp that is Washington, DC, we invite you to:

DIG DEEPER

The following contains editorial content which is the opinion of the author.

WASHINGTON, DC- The swamp…defined by Merriam-Webster as a difficult or troublesome situation or subject. Donald Trump warned us about the swamp, and was on his way to making significant inroads on exposing and eliminating the swamp known as Washington, DC.

In yet another example of how deep the DC swamp is, Conservative Treehouse is reporting that Attorney General Merrick Garland’s legal counsel, Margaret Goodlander, is married to Biden’s national security advisor Jake Sullivan.

That revelation in and of itself wouldn’t be a big deal under normal circumstances. However, we are hardly in normal circumstances.

Sullivan you may recall was one of the leading people behind the Russia collusion hoax, paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee, and which partially derailed the Trump administration for its first three years. During Clinton’s campaign, Sullivan served as her foreign policy advisor.

The revelation about Goodlander’s association with Garland’s office becomes extremely troubling (an understatement) since she is reported to be involved with overseeing special counsel John Durham’s probe into the Russia collusion “investigation.”

Part of that investigation involves Sullivan’s involvement in the collusion hoax and his likely false testimony to a Congressional subcommittee. The probe into Sullivan also involves use of the FBI as a political tool in the hoax.

The Washington Examiner reports that a number of people are calling for Goodlander to recuse herself from the Russia probe, which would seem to make sense given her husband’s involvement in the scam.

The Examiner tells us that Garland is charged with general oversight of the Durham probe in his role as attorney general. In that role, Garland’s office oversees Durham’s budget, the scope of the investigation and the release of Durham’s report.

The involvement of Goodlander raises serious questions as to how impartial Garland’s office will be in cooperating with the Durham investigation.

Sullivan’s name came up in Durham’s indictment of Michael Sussmann, a cybersecurity lawyer who worked for the Clinton campaign.

The indictment gave no indication that Durham was targeting Sullivan, however it is possible that Sullivan could serve as a witness in the probe in his role as Clinton’s foreign policy advisor.

Also, it is possible, according to the Free Beacon, that Durham’s investigation could expose details which might embarrass or otherwise implicate Sullivan in the scheme to undermine Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, and later his administration.

According to a Justice Department spokesman, Goodlander “has no role in Mr. Durham’s investigation,” however it isn’t clear if she formally recused herself from the matter or “whether the Durham probe is outside her Justice Department portfolio,” the Free Beacon wrote.

Fox News reports Goodlander advises Garland on antitrust and international issues.

Meanwhile, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) as well as a government watchdog group, Empower Oversight say Goodlander must be formally recused from the Durham investigation in order to “maintain public trust” in the investigation.

“The Justice Department’s standing guidance calls for employees to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest, especially when it comes to ongoing criminal investigations,” Grassley, the ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said.

“It is Garland’s best interest—and he’s obligated—to be transparent about whether his department is walling off officials who have a real or even perceived conflict, just as prior administrations have done,” Grassley told the Washington Free Beacon.

Empower Oversight founder and president Jason Foster said cratering public confidence in the Justice Department makes it “critical that decisions about Special Counsel Durham’s investigation are insulated from the political biases and personal interests of senior DOJ officials.”

Continuing, he said, “It would be no imposition on [Goodlander] or AG Garland to simply recuse herself from providing any advice to him in relation to that investigation—and thus reassure the public that she will continue to have no role in the future,” Foster told the Free Beacon.

The Free Beacon said they reached out to the Justice Department to see if Goodlander had officially recused herself from the Durham probe, to which they received no response. Likewise, the White House did not respond to questions about whether Sullivan had been contacted by Durham’s investigators.

The Free Beacon reported:

As a Clinton adviser, Sullivan had contact with the campaign lawyers who commissioned the Steele dossier, the infamous British spy report that made false allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. Sullivan is the Clinton adviser referenced in Durham’s indictment of cybersecurity lawyer Michael Sussmann.

Sussmann, a former partner at the firm Perkins Coie, is accused of lying to an FBI lawyer about his reasons for investigating suspicious computer traffic between Trump’s real estate company and Alfa Bank, a Russian bank.

Durham alleges that Sussmann said he did not have a client with interest in the information when he was in fact working for the Clinton campaign.

Sussmann’s indictment revealed that Sussmann’s former partner at Perkins Coie—Mark Elias—in September 2016 briefed Sullivan and other members of Clinton’s campaign about efforts of Perkins Coie to investigate the Alfa Bank data.

Only days before the election, Sullivan issued a statement in which he used the Alfa-Trump allegations as evidence of collusion. The FBI later debunked the allegations of links between Trump and the Russian bank.

Elias, who was knee deep in a number of lawsuits last year in the lead up to the November presidential election, was responsible for hiring Fusion GPS, the firm which commissioned the bogus Steele dossier which was credited with initiating the Russia probe.

As part of his investigation, Durham indicted Igor Danchenko, the primary source for the dossier, on charges that he had lied to the FBI about the identity of his sources, including lying about a longtime Democratic operative, Charles Dolan not being one of his sources.

Grassley and Empower Oversight have also been pressuring the Justice Department to force another DOJ official, Susan Hennessy to recuse herself. She also pushed the false claim that Trump had colluded with Russia, and has criticized Durham’s investigation as “partisan silliness.” She serves in the national security division.

Grassley has complained that Garland, apparently focused on harassing and targeting school parents about school board meetings, has not cooperated in releasing information about his requests for information about Hennessy and other DOJ officials’ conflicts of interest.

“I’ve raised concerns about potential conflicts of several Biden Justice Department officials and can’t get a straight answer from the attorney general,” he told the Free Beacon.

Two men arrested and charged with the attempted murder of a Chicago cop after shooting him during a traffic stop

For more on Sullivan’s potential perjury before Congress, we invite you to read our prior report:

DIG DEEPER

WASHINGTON, DC- This past week, there was finally an indictment in the Russia collusion case.

Unfortunately for Hillary Clinton and the Democrats, it was Michael A. Sussmann, until recently a partner at Perkins Coie, a law firm which represented the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee.

One factor that was overlooked is that the indictment implicates a current member of the Biden administration as having lied under oath.

According to the Daily Mail, Biden national security adviser Jake Sullivan appears to have lied under oath to investigators looking into the bogus Russia collusion case involving the 2016 presidential campaign of former President Donald Trump.

The tie to Sullivan was found inside the grand jury indictment of Sussmann where he was identified by his campaign position, the Mail said.

According to the criminal complaint, Sullivan was briefed about alleged ties between Trump and a Russian bank, Alfa Bank ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

If that indictment is accurate, and there’s no reason to believe it is not, it appears to contradict testimony made by Sullivan during testimony before Congress in 2017, in which he told lawmakers he had no knowledge of the company which led the “research” mission into the since-debunked collusion case.

The indictment of Sussmann stems from him telling FBI investigators in a September 2016 meeting that he was not acting on behalf of “any client” when he asked for a meeting with the FBI’s general counsel, wherein he warned them of “concerns” from cybersecurity researchers of possible suspicious contact between Russia and the Trump campaign.

In their indictment, the grand jury said that Sussmann isn’t the only one to blame for the scam and in the 27-page indictment referenced Sullivan’s involvement in attempting to trick the FBI into investigating Trump for Russian collusion.

While Sullivan isn’t referenced specifically by name, the indictment refers to Clinton’s “foreign policy advisor” (Sullivan) who communicated with Sussmann’s law partner, the slimy Marc Elias in reference to the Alfa bank allegations.

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According to RealClearInvestigations (RCI), the “foreign policy advisor” “exchanged emails with the Clinton campaign’s foreign policy adviser concerning the Russian bank allegations,” as well as other top campaign officials, according to the indictment.

The outlet said sources close to the case have confirmed that adviser was indeed Sullivan. They say he (Sullivan) was briefed on the progress of developing opposition research materials which tied former President Trump to Alfa Bank, as well as being aware of the participants in the project.

Among those participants were Fusion GPS, an opposition research group that worked with the Clinton campaign to gather dirt on the Russian bank and compose the materials Elias discussed with Sullivan.

Those materials were then submitted by Sussmann to the FBI. Sources also say that Fusion GPS researchers were in regular contact with both Sussmann and Elias about the project in the summer and fall of 2016.

Sullivan and Elias also directly met, where Elias briefed him on Fusion GPS’s opposition research, the sources revealed.

In his 2017 testimony Sullivan denied knowing of Fusion’s involvement in the Alfa Bank opposition research.

During the same closed-door testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, Sullivan also denied knowing anything about Fusion in 2016 or who was conducting the opposition research. The Sussmann indictment appears to show that Sullivan lied during that testimony.

“Marc [Elias]…would occasionally give us updates on the opposition research they were conducting, but I didn’t know what the nature of that effort was—inside effort, outside effort, who was funding it, who was doing it, anything like that,” Sullivan testified.

This was in response to a question about whether or not Sullivan had seen the [Steele] Dossier, which served as a basis for the FBI’s investigation into so-called Russia collusion.

Sullivan also denied knowing that Perkins Coie was working for the Clinton campaign until October 2017, when it was reported in the media. Sullivan even tried to claim that he didn’t know that Elias was working for Perkins Coie, a well-known Democrat-connected law firm.

That was despite the fact that major media outlets routinely referred to Elias as  “general counsel for the Clinton campaign” and “a partner at Perkins Coie” throughout 2016.

“To be honest with you, Marc [Elias] wears a tremendous number of hats, so I wasn’t sure who he was representing,” Sullivan testified under oath. “I sort of thought he was, you know, just talking to us as, you know, a fellow traveler—in this campaign effort.”

In speaking to the opposition research, Sullivan claimed “They didn’t do something with it,” when in truth they used the research to launch the collusion investigation at the FBI, while also dropping a number of stories to the Washington media, which Elias mentioned in emails.

Lying to Congress is a felony, however as we routinely see, it is rarely prosecuted, although former Special Counsel Robert Mueller achieved convictions of two Trump associates on that very charge.

RCI said they reached out to Sullivan’s attorney, who did not respond to questions, and said a spokesperson for the National Security Council declined comment.

They noted that even after the 2016 election, Sullivan continued to work in an effort to undermine Trump, with no fewer than three internet companies and two university computer researchers who used nonpublic internet data in an effort to derive “derogatory information on Trump,” Sussmann’s indictment read.

Prosecutors said that operation continued until at least February 2017, when Sullivan met with someone else who was central in the attempt to smear Trump, this time at the FBI.

This was done in an attempt to compel FBI agents to continue the investigation into the dossier in order to keep the Trump presidency “under an ethical cloud,’ RCI said.

On Feb. 10, 2017, Sullivan met with two Fusion GPS operatives, along with their partner Daniel Jones, a former FBI analyst and Democratic staffer in order to continue the narrative that Trump was basically an agent of Putin.

RCI initially reported the meeting, which lasted around an hour and took place in a Washington, DC office building, which also included former Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta.

That meeting involved a plan to raise money for the purposes of financing a multimillion-dollar opposition research project spearheaded by Jones to attack Trump. Basically, the new operation run by Jones would take the place of the Clinton campaign’s smear campaign.

While it wasn’t clear if Sussmann attended the Feb 10 meeting, he was still apparently involved with the operation, along with a crew of data miners.

Just one day before the meeting attended by Sullivan, Sussmann traveled to CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia to tell the false tale of a secret server, meeting with top CIA officials, according to sources familiar with Durham’s probe.

That meeting, which lasted around 90 minutes saw Sussmann provide officials “updated” documents and data he has provided to the FBI prior to the election.

On March 28, 2017, Jones met with the FBI in order to pass “fresh” leads he and a team of cyber researchers had discovered about the Alfa Bank server and Trump, with the FBI investigating the new leads after having closed their investigation a month earlier.

That very month, then FBI Director James Comey announced the bureau was now investigating possible “coordination” between Russia and Trump’s campaign.

Despite all of those efforts, the FBI debunked the allegations involving Alfa Bank, with agents finding the email server in question wasn’t controlled by the Trump organization, a point confirmed by Mueller in 2019 testimony. “It wasn’t true,” he said.

In fact the so-called “secret server” was in fact housed in a small Pennsylvania town, not in Trump Tower in New York, and was operated by a Florida marketing firm called Cendyn, which spams emails promoting numerous hotel chains; in other words that third-party server spammed Alfa Bank employees who used Trump hotels.

“The FBI’s investigation revealed that the email server at issue was not owned or operated by the Trump organization, but rather had been administered by a mass-marketing email company that sent advertisements for Trump hotels and hundreds of other clients,” Durham wrote in his indictment.

That mattered little, as both Jones and Sullivan continued promoting the hoax as truth. In 2017, assisted by Sullivan and Podesta, Jones launched a nonprofit called The Democracy Integrity Project (TDIP), and raised some $7 million primarily seeded by Silicon Valley tech executives.

That organization hired computer researchers, including Fusion GPS opposition researchers and Christopher Steele, he of the debunked “Steele dossier” in order to “prove” the rumors contained in the bogus dossier.

TDIP fed information to friendly media outlets, as well as leading Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee, as well as the FBI. Jones previously worked on the Senate Intelligence Committee, which had initiated an investigation into Trump and Russia.

Rewinding back to 2016 during the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, the CIA intercepted Russian chatter about a “Clinton foreign policy adviser who was trying to develop allegations to ‘vilify’ Trump,” with the intercepts noting that Hillary Clinton approved a scheme to “stir up a scandal” against Donald Trump by tying him to Putin.

In fact, according to handwritten notes, then CIA director John Brennan warned President Obama that Russia had intercepted intel about the “alleged approval by Hillary Clinton on July 26, 2016, of a proposal from one of her foreign policy advisers to vilify Donald Trump.”

During that summer, Brennan briefed Democrats, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on the Alfa Bank-Trump server rumors, congressional reports read. That led Reid to write come demanding the FBI step up its investigation of Trump’s ties to Moscow.

During the DNC, Sullivan was a very busy boy, utilizing a golf cart to drive from network tent to network tent, convincing producers and anchors to investigate the story that Trump was conspiring with Russia to steal the 2016 election; all the major networks—CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, and Chris Wallace of Fox News all gave Sullivan airtime to spin the bogus Russia collusion stories.

On the eve of the 2016 election, Sullivan produced a written campaign statement that Trump and the Russians had set up a “secret hotline” through Alfa Bank,” and suggested “federal authorities” were investigating “this direct connection between Trump and Russia.”

He attempted to show the discovery was the result of work by “independent experts—‘computer scientists’—without disclosing their attachment to the campaign,” RCI said.

Sullivan was up to his eyeballs in the Russia collusion hoax. He clearly lied in his congressional testimony in 2017. The penalty for lying to Congress is up to five years in prison. Let’s wait and see if he’s held to account.

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