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Corruption Crime Donald Trump Impeachment

Looks Like Adam Schiff May Have Some Of Donald Trump’s Banking Records

If there’s one thing Donald Trump fears more than any other, it’s that anyone other than his accountants or attorneys will get a look at his banking and tax records. He even told the New York Times back in 2017 that if Special Counsel Robert Mueller dared to look at his finances or those of his business, it would be crossing a “red line.”

But now it appears the House Intelligence Committee and its chairman, Rep, Adam Schiff (D-CA) have hit the jackpot when it comes to Trump’s dealings with German financial institution Deutsche Bank, and they got the information from an unlikely source.


According to The New York Times, a man named Val Broeksmit — who just so happens to be the son of the late Bill Broeksmit, who was a senior executive for Deutsche Bank — may have provided the documentation to Schiff:

“For more than five years, Val Broeksmit has been dangling his Deutsche Bank files in front of journalists and government investigators, dreaming of becoming the next great American whistle-blower. He wants to expose what he sees as corporate wrongdoing, give some meaning to his father’s death — and maybe get famous along the way. Inside newsrooms and investigative bodies around the world, Mr. Broeksmit’s documents have become something of an open secret, and so are the psychological strings that come attached.”

Broeksmit knew that congressional committees were taking a close look at the President Trump’s finances and had been blocked in their efforts by numerous court delays. So he took his information directly to Congressman Schiff and suggested that Schiff put him on the committee’s payroll in exchange for him sharing documents he found after his father died. Documents that had lots of information about Deutsche Bank and all sorts of possibly illegal activities.


The documents also contained information about Donald Trump and the Trump Organization:

“Mr. Schiff’s investigators badly wanted the secret Deutsche files. Mr. Broeksmit tried to extract money from them — he pushed to be hired as a consultant to the committee — but that was a nonstarter. An investigator, Daniel Goldman, appealed to his sense of patriotism and pride. ‘Imagine a scenario where some of the material that you have can actually provide the seed that we can then use to blow open everything that [Trump] has been hiding,’ Mr. Goldman told Mr. Broeksmit in a recorded phone call. ‘In some respects, you — and your father vicariously through you — will go down in American history as a hero and as the person who really broke open an incredibly corrupt president and administration.'”


Broeksmit refused to hand over the information voluntarily when he wasn’t offered a job with the intelligence committee, so Schiff subpoenaed him and got the documents anyway.

If those documents have any information about Trump’s dealings with Russian oligarchs, government officials, or Russian organized crime, then Schiff may be able to humiliate both the president and Congressional Republicans, just in time for the November election.

Adam Schiff may finally have Trump in checkmate.

Categories
Donald Trump Elections Impeachment The Trump Adminstration

Nancy Pelosi’s Post-Impeachment Strategy Is Guaranteed To Enrage Trump

Around 4:00 p.m on Wednesday, Senate Republicans will vote in lockstep to fully acquit Donald Trump in the sham impeachment trial they held without bothering to hear from witnesses or subpoena relevant documents.

Once the trial is complete, Trump will undoubtedly be the most powerful president in U.S. history, able to pursue efforts to punish his perceived enemies and conspire with any foreign government in a craven attempt to win a second term in office.


But Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has her own post-impeachment strategy, and there’s an excellent chance that her plans will wind up uncovering some incredibly damaging information that could prove politically fatal to Trump’s reelection.

For example, while the White House is waiting for the formal vote in the Senate tomorrow, FBI Director Christopher Wray will be testifying before the House Judiciary Committee, and you can bet he’ll be asked about the Ukraine scandal and possible foreign interference in the 2020 election.

And then we have other moves to expect from Pelosi and House Democrats, which are spelled out in an excellent article by Greg Sargent of the Washington Post, who predicts what we’ll likely see in the months ahead.


First and foremost, former National Security Adviser John Bolton will testify, either willingly or in response to a subpoena, Sargent notes:

“Learning more (from Bolton) — which Senate Republicans refused to do — will further illuminate the scope, reach and inner workings of (the Ukraine) scheme. Bolton can almost certainly detail other episodes implicated with it.”

Also, Lev Parnas, Rudy Giuliani’s close associate and henchman, will also be called before one or more House committees:

“’Parnas can speak to the shady characters Rudy is talking to,’ Sam Berger, an expert on democracy reform at the Center for American Progress, told me. ‘Congress needs to figure out everything it can about Trump’s ongoing efforts to cheat in the upcoming election.'”


And then there’s dealing with Trump’s personal protector at the Department of Justice, Attorney General Bill Barr, who may well be running interference for the president when it comes to ongoing investigations into Giuliani being conducted by the Southern District of New York (SDNY) and also trying to get payback against those who have investigated the president:

“Given Barr’s role in helping Trump whitewash Russia’s attack on our democracy, one cannot rule out at least the possibility of Barr somehow using the Justice Department against one or more Trump foes in some form, perhaps to lend validity to Trump’s narratives.”

If Trump thinks he’s in the clear now that impeachment is almost over with, he’s about to find out that Democrats still have several cards left to play. And Speaker Pelosi may well hold the Ace of Spades.

Categories
Donald Trump Impeachment

Could Trump’s Impeachment End In A Mistrial?

Ever since the Senate voted along party lines on Friday to not subpoena documents or witnesses pertinent to the impeachment of Donald Trump, many have been asking the same question: What, if anything, can Democrats — and by extension the 75 percent of Americans who say they favor witness testimony — do?

A former federal prosecutor has a possible solution, and he’s urging Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the lead House impeachment manager, to try it.


Glenn Kirschner is a legal analyst for NBC News and former Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia, where he worked alongside former Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

Though he admits it’s a long shot, Kirschner says that Schiff and House Democrats should move for a mistrial in the Senate trial of Donald Trump.

Granted, most of us have heard of a mistrial, but what exactly does it mean?


According to the Legal Information Institute at Cornell University Law School, a mistrial is defined as:

“A mistrial occurs when 1) a jury is unable to reach a verdict and there must be a new trial with a new jury; 2) there is a serious procedural error or misconduct that would result in an unfair trial, and the judge adjourns the case without a decision on the merits and awards a new trial.”

Here’s how Kirschner sees an impeachment mistrial playing out, as he explained Sunday on Twitter:

You have to admit, it’s certainly one hell of a novel and provocative proposal. And Kirschner isn’t the only person suggesting that Schiff and his fellow House impeachment mangers at least try it.

Back in December, Jennifer Rubin of the Washington Post also theorized what might be done to stop a sham impeachment trial, and the last item on her list was also calling for a mistrial:

“If, at the end of the proceedings, Democrats have not had access to witnesses, they could ask Roberts to declare a ‘mistrial.’ That is highly unlikely to be granted, but it would cement in the public’s mind a key argument: The Senate did not acquit (or decline to remove) by a full and fair trial. The stain of impeachment should remain, Democrats can argue.”

Just imagine how such a move would enrage Trump. He’d stay up all night tweeting and whining about how unfairly he’s being treated. If only for that reason, such a Hail Mary tactic might just be worth a try.

Categories
Corruption Donald Trump Impeachment

Trump Impeachment Attorney Jay Sekulow Has A Long History Of Shameless Grifting

During the Senate impeachment trial of Donald Trump, we’ve all seen a lot of Jay Sekulow, a member of the president’s legal defense team.

And yet it’s very likely that you know very little about Sekulow, who serves as the chief counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), which was founded by televangelist Pat Robertson and subscribes to an extreme far right Christian fundamentalist view of the world and legal jurisprudence, including calling for taxpayer funding of religion and trying to mandate that Christianity is taught in public schools as if it’s proven fact.


But it turns out that Sekulow — much like his most famous client, the president — is also fond of feathering his own nest, participating in all sorts of questionable financial practices that reek of fraud and grift.

As The Guardian first noted in an article it published about Sekulow, most of the attorney’s efforts have been on his own behalf and focused on enriching himself and members of his family. Here’s just a few of highlights from The Guardian’s informative reporting, which blew the whistle on Sekulow’s non-profit, Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism (CASE):

“For years, the nonprofits have made a notable amount of payments to Sekulow and his family, which were first reported by Law.com. Since 2000, a law firm co-owned by Sekulow, the Constitutional Litigation and Advocacy Group, has been paid more than $25m by the nonprofits for legal services. During the same period, Sekulow’s company Regency Productions, which produces his talk radio show, was paid $11.3m for production services.”


But that’s only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Sekulow and his questionable way of steering “contributions” into his own bank accounts and those of the people closest to him:

  • Sekulow received compensation exceeding $3 million from the nonprofits. His wife Pam received more than $1 million for serving as treasurer and secretary of CASE.
  • Sekulow’s brother Gary serves as chief operating officer of both the ACLJ and CASE. He has been paid more than $9 million in salary since 2000. In a filing with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Gary Sekulow claimed that he works 40 hours per week for each group.
  • Jay Sekulow’s two sons and Gary Sekulow’s daughter have also done work for the ACLJ and CASE, earning nearly $2 million since 2000.


All of those payments are highly unusual and unethical, according to Arthur Rieman, an expert on nonprofit law, who noted:

“I can’t imagine this situation being acceptable. That kind of money is practically unheard of in the nonprofit world, and these kinds of transactions I could never justify.”

So why exactly did Donald Trump add Jay Sekulow to his legal team? Probably because he’s just as ethically-challenged as the impeached president.

Categories
Donald Trump Impeachment Uncategorized

Senate Democrats Now Have The 51 Votes Needed For Impeachment Witnesses

The news which broke Sunday regarding the draft of an upcoming book by former National Security Adviser John Bolton which alleges that Donald Trump did indeed hold military aid to Ukraine hostage until he got investigations of former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, has completely changed the landscape of Trump’s Senate impeachment trial.


Before the Bolton news broke, it seemed highly unlikely that there would be any witnesses called because Senate Republicans — operating in lockstep with the White House — wanted to get this entire impeachment trial over with so Trump could declare victory and get back to his attempts to rig the 2020 election the way he did the one that supposedly “elected” him four years ago.


Now, however, at least four senators have changed their minds and want to at least give the appearance that the trial isn’t rigged, according to PBS News Hour reporter Lisa Desjardins, who sent out this tweet Monday evening:

So, if the votes are there, who might be called to testify? Here’s the most likely names you’ll be hearing:

  • Former National Security Adviser John Bolton
  • Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney
  • Rudy Giuliani
  • Lev Parnas

As you might expect, Senate Republicans are now saying that they want some witnesses of their own, specifically the Bidens, with Lindsey Graham (R-SC) whining that he will make sure the Bidens are raked over the coals and slagged in a desperate effort to muddy the water and divert attention away from Trump’s endless parade of crimes.


But witnesses would be a big victory for the Democrats, and if they get them, that would be very bad news for Trump, even if only because it will drag the trial out even longer, making him more politically vulnerable.

There’s no guarantee that any member of the GOP can grow a spine, if only temporarily, but things are looking bad for Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) at the moment.