Former Hillary for America campaign chairman John Podesta was interviewed on the latest episode of The Global Politico podcast. While there are a few comments in the interview about the 2016 election, the majority of the interview is about President Donald Trump, his firing of FBI Director James Comey, and whether Republicans can impeach Trump without damaging the party. Podesta is critical of Trump’s presidency and still blames Comey for Clinton’s loss last November. He said, “I still think what Jim Comey did last fall was wrong, but he shouldn’t have been fired, given the circumstances that he was leading this investigation.” Read a transcript of the interview HERE, or you can listen to the interview below.
John Podesta, the former chairman for Hillary for America, was interviewed by Tech Crunch about the election, and specifically the hacking of his Gmail account and the emails of the Democratic National Committee shortly before the election in November. The emails from the DNC and Podesta were then posted on WikiLeaks. US intelligence agencies traced the hacking back to Russia, and the hack was one of the issues that plagued the Clinton campaign in the weeks leading up to the election.
In the interview, Podesta spoke about the hacking and the failure of the FBI to properly investigate. “I think to this day it’s inexplicable that they were so casual about the investigation of the Russian penetration of the DNC emails. They didn’t even bother to send an agent to the DNC; they left a couple of messages at the IT help desk saying, ‘You might want to be careful.’ There are at least forces within the FBI that wanted her to lose,” he said. Podesta also discusses the failures of the campaign and the rise of fake news. Read the full interview HERE. Follow Podesta on Twitter @johnpodesta.
News Source: Tech Crunch
A bipartisan group of electors from the Electoral College have asked for an intelligence briefing following revelations from the CIA that Russia may have influenced the election. In a letter to James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, the electors expressed their concern and asked that all of the electors be briefed by the intelligence community before they cast their ballots later this month. The chairman of Hillary Clinton’s campaign, John Podesta, said that he and the campaign supports the electors being briefed. In a statement, he said, “The bipartisan electors’ letter raises very grave issues involving our national security. Electors have a solemn responsibility under the Constitution and we support their efforts to have their questions addressed. Each day that month, our campaign decried the interference of Russia in our campaign and its evident goal of hurting our campaign to aid Donald Trump. Despite our protestations, this matter did not receive the attention it deserved by the media in the campaign. We now know that the CIA has determined Russia’s interference in our elections was for the purpose of electing Donald Trump. This should distress every American.”
This post will be updated as we learn more.
Americans deserve a president who’s ready on Day One to keep us safe. As a former Secretary of State and senator, Hillary Clinton brings vast experience to the Oval Office, having dealt with the key issues facing Americans around the world for decades. Traveling nearly a million miles as America’s top diplomat, Hillary has handled issues ranging from nuclear proliferation to military readiness, from women’s rights to climate change, and is ready to lead from day one.
Donald Trump, on the other hand, has proven himself again and again to be temperamentally unfit and totally unqualified to be President and Commander-in-Chief.
Beyond his lack of understanding of foreign policy and unwillingness to learn, Donald Trump is a loose cannon with dangerous views on major global issues. Trump would encourage the spread of nuclear weapons around the world, has insulted our allies and praised several authoritarian dictators. He even encouraged a foreign government to hack Americans, and since then has refused to acknowledge the U.S. Intelligence community’s conclusion that the Russian government has done just that.
Americans deserve a president who understands the challenging world in which we live, not one who is too erratic and uninformed to have control of nuclear weapons.
Throughout his career, and throughout this campaign, on subject after subject, Trump has proven he is unfit to be commander-in-chief. As we begin the final week of the presidential campaign, here is a look back at Trump’s dangerous record on matters of defense and foreign policy:
On nuclear weapons, Donald Trump has displayed a reckless disregard for fact and fails to understand the dangers of nuclear proliferation. Simply put, he doesn’t have the temperament to be trusted with the nuclear codes.
- Trump has said he “loves war.”
- Trump has embraced a reckless “shoot first” foreign policy.
- Trump reportedly wondered why we can’t use nuclear weapons, if we have them.
- Trump said he wanted to be “unpredictable” with nuclear weapons.
- Trump exhibited ignorance on whether he would adopt a “no first use” doctrine.
- Trump would allow countries like Japan, South Korea and Saudi Arabia to acquire nuclear weapons.
- Trump appeared to have no idea what the nuclear triad
- On the prospect of nuclear war in Asia, Trump said, “good luck, enjoy yourself folks.”
- Trump’s rhetoric pushed dozens former nuclear launch officers to sign a letter saying Trump “should not have his finger on the button.”
U.S. MILITARY AND VETERANS
Trump has repeatedly insulted our military, our veterans and their families. He has been disrespecting our veterans for decades, continually proving he’s unqualified and temperamentally unfit to be commander-in-chief.
- Trump calls our military “a disaster.”
- Trump said “our military can’t beat ISIS.”
- Trump says he watches “the shows” for military advice.
- Trump has said he would consult himself on foreign policy because he has “a very good brain.”
- Trump said, “I know more about ISIS than the generals do. Believe me.”
- Trump said the generals have been “reduced to rubble.”
- Trump said John McCain was “not a war hero” because he was captured.
- Trump suggested veterans experiencing PTSD aren’t “strong.”
- Trump repeatedly criticized a Gold Star family.
- Trump’s businesses have been accused of firing employees for their military service.
- Trump lied over and over again about donating to veterans charities.
- Trump scammed veterans through his sham Trump University.
- Trump attempted to kick disabled veterans off of Fifth Avenue over two decades, calling the situation “deplorable.”
Trump has disparaged the U.S. intelligence community – not only rejecting their conclusions, but questioning their motives.
- When asked whether he trusts intelligence, Trump said “not so much.”
- Trump invited a foreign government to commit cyber espionage in the U.S.
- Trump maintains that we don’t know if Russia is behind recent hacks, despite being personally briefed by Republican Representative Michael McCaul, Chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security.
- Trump called the U.S. intelligence community’s conclusion that Russia was behind that hack was “public relations, frankly” and repeatedly denied their conclusion.
- Trump has been accused by a former acting CIA director of being “an unwitting agent of Putin.”
For decades, America has held strong alliances across the world – including those with NATO countries. NATO has stood with the United States, for example, invoking Article 5 after 9/11 and collaborating to fight the war on terror today. But on the campaign trail, Donald Trump has outlined plans to cut off America’s allies.
- Trump said he would be fine if NATO broke up.
- Trump accused NATO countries of ripping off the United States, saying “either they have to pay up… or they have to get out. And if it breaks up NATO, it breaks up NATO.”
- Trump said NATO “may be obsolete” and “doesn’t really help us.”
- Trump said he might not defend NATO allies against Russian aggression.
- Trump has extended his threats past NATO to countries like Japan and South Korea.
Donald Trump seems to have an admiration for dictators from across the world. From Vladimir Putin to Saddam Hussein and beyond, Trump has repeatedly complimented foreign leaders known for their records of oppression and abuse..
- Trump said North Korea’s Kim Jong-Un deserves “credit” for taking out his rivals and has “got to be pretty smart.”
- Trump gave Saddam Hussein unduecredit, saying “he did one thing well, he killed terrorists.”
- Trump believes that, during the Tiananmen Square massacre, the Chinese government showed “strength.”
- Trump thinks Vladimir Putin is a better leader than President Obama, “saying in terms of leadership, he’s getting an A and our president is not doing so well.” (But of course, his praise for Putin doesn’t stop there.)
FOREIGN BUSINESS ENTANGLEMENTS
Trump’s extensive foreign dealings would present significant conflicts of interest and endanger our national security. Trump refuses to disclose the full extent of his foreign business entanglements – but without knowing the details of them, how will Americans know whose interests Trump is putting first? What we do know is concerning.
- Trump has extensive global financial dealings.
- Trump admitted that if his business interests were threatened by another country’s government, he would retaliate with the power of the US government.
- Trump has a record of business dealings with foreign governments – including Iran and China that we don’t know the extent of.
- Trump has also had numerous foreign business partners we don’t know much about – including one that is allegedly linked to an international money laundering network.
- Trump is in debt to foreign institutions for hundreds of millions of dollars.
- Trump’s foreign entanglements would pose unprecedented challenges for U.S. foreign policy and national security.
Despite Trump’s claims that he has a “secret” plan to defeat ISIS, he has no real plan at all. And his rhetoric is dangerously playing into terrorists’ hands.
- Trump would “ask [his] generals” – the very same generals he believes he knows more than – for a plan to defeat ISIS, since he doesn’t currently have any plan at all.
- Trump would continue to promote Russia’s brutal bombing campaign in Syria that is targeting civilians instead of ISIS.
- Trump has suggested he would allow Syria to become a “free zone for ISIS.”
- Trump would ban Muslims from entering the U.S., a policy that feeds radical jihadist propaganda.
- Trump would engage in torture in the fight against ISIS and kill the families of terrorists.
Donald Trump’s approach to Iran is devoid of any substance. He has prefered to denigrate American leaders and spew lies when it comes to Iran — though he was willing to deal with Iran when it made him money.
- Trump has repeatedly lied about the Iran deal.
- Trump has also repeatedly lied about Iran’s release of Americans.
- Trump has peddled falsehoods about Iran’s ability to pursue a nuclear weapon.
- Trump has been exposed as a lessor to Iranian bank linked to terrorism.
Trump doesn’t understand the threat North Korea poses. On the campaign trail, Trump has taken positions that would endanger the security of the United States and our allies and embolden North Korea.
- Trump would meet with Kim Jong-Un, despite his continued violations of international obligations to abandon his nuclear and missile programs.
- Trump would consider cutting off defense support to Japan and South Korea.
- Trump would open to door to nuclear proliferation in the region. When asked whether it’s “fine” for Japan and South Korea to get nuclear weapons, Trump said, “Can I be honest with you? It’s going to happen anyway.”
- Trump joked about the prospect of nuclear war between Japan and North Korea, saying “good luck, enjoy yourself folks.”
While Clinton has stood up to Russia, Trump panders to Putin. He has voiced support for policies and positions that align exactly with the Kremlin’s interests.
- Trump backed Brexit and celebrated the result of the vote.
- Trump casually predicts the dissolution of the EU.
- Trump calls NATO obsolete, says he wouldn’t mind leaving it and threatens to shirk our responsibility to defend our NATO allies unless they pay up.
- Trump criticized the U.S. for resisting Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.
- Ahead of the GOP convention, Trump’s campaign bucked fellow Republicans by maneuvering to ensure the party platform no longer calls for arming the Ukrainians, and then lied about it.
- Trump has floated permanently ceding Crimea to Russia as well as lifting sanctions, after he seemingly had no idea Russia invaded Crimea two years ago.
- Trump has even encouraged Russian espionage to interfere in our election on his behalf, and denied the Kremlin’s evident involvement in hacks on U.S. political entities, a strategy Putin has deployed across Europe to try to install candidates reminiscent of Trump.
- Trump announced he would meet with Putin prior to the start of his administration, if elected president.
To date, Donald Trump has not laid out any real plans with respect to Syria or offered any indication that he takes the conflict and humanitarian disaster seriously.
- Trump suggested Syria should be a “free zone for ISIS.”
- Trump raised the possibility of sending 20,000 – 30,000 U.S. ground troops to Syria and Iraq.
- Trump praised and encouraged Russia’s brutal bombing campaign in Syria, despite the climbing total civilian casualties and attacks on U.S.-backed forces.
Hillary for America responded to the resignation of Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort. Their statement, video, and release are below.
Statement from Robby Mook on Manafort’s Resignation and Trump’s Continued Pro-Kremlin Ties
Friday, Hillary For American Campaign Manager Robby Mook issued the following statement on the resignation of Trump’s Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort and the many continuing ties between Trump and his campaign and pro-Kremlin forces:
“Paul Manafort’s resignation is a clear admission that the disturbing connections between Donald Trump’s team and pro-Kremlin elements in Russia and Ukraine are untenable. But this is not the end of the story. It’s just the beginning. You can get rid of Manafort, but that doesn’t end the odd bromance Trump has with Putin. Trump still has to answer serious questions hovering over his campaign given his propensity to parrot Putin’s talking points, the roster of advisers like Carter Page and Mike Flynn with deep ties to Russia, the recent Russian government hacking and disclosure of Democratic Party records, and reports that Breitbart published articles advocating pro-Kremlin positions on Ukraine. It’s also time for Donald Trump to come clean on his own business dealings with Russian interests, given recent news reports about his web of deep financial connections to business groups with Kremlin ties.”
HFA also released a new video on Donald Trump’s tendency to echo Vladimir Putin’s talking points:
Trump Campaign Advisers’ Russia Connections Extend Far Beyond Manafort
Carter Page, Trump’s pro-Putin foreign policy adviser, built his career on deals with Russia’s state owned gas company, Gazprom, and traveled to Moscow just last month.
Washington Post: Trump adviser’s public comments, ties to Moscow stir unease in both parties
“In early June, a little-known adviser to Donald Trump stunned a gathering of high-powered Washington foreign policy experts meeting with the visiting prime minister of India, going off topic with effusive praise for Russian President Vladimir Putin and Trump. The adviser, Carter Page, hailed Putin as stronger and more reliable than President Obama, according to three people who were present at the closed-door meeting at Blair House — and then touted the positive effect a Trump presidency would have on U.S.-Russia relations. A month later, Page dumbfounded foreign policy experts again by giving another speech harshly critical of U.S. policy — this time in Moscow.”
Bloomberg: Trump’s New Russia Adviser Has Deep Ties to Kremlin’s Gazprom
A globe-trotting American investment banker who’s built a career on deals with Russia and its state-run gas company, Carter Page says his business has suffered directly from the U.S. economic sanctions imposed after Russia’s escalating involvement in the Ukraine. When Donald Trump named him last week as one of his foreign-policy advisers, Page says his e-mail inbox filled up with positive notes from Russian contacts. “So many people who I know and have worked with have been so adversely affected by the sanctions policy,” Page said in a two-hour interview last week. “There’s a lot of excitement in terms of the possibilities for creating a better situation.”
Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, the adviser who joined Trump this week for his first classified intelligence briefing, has been paid by Kremlin-run RT and sat next to Putin at the outlet’s 10th anniversary gala.
Washington Post: He was one of the most respected intel officers of his generation. Now he’s leading ‘Lock her up’ chants.
Like Trump, Flynn has advocated forging closer ties with Russia. In interviews with The Washington Post, Flynn acknowledged being paid to give a speech and attend a lavish anniversary party for the Kremlin-controlled RT television network in Moscow last year, where he was seated next to Russian President Vladimir Putin…. Asked why he would want to be so closely associated with a Kremlin propaganda platform, Flynn said he sees no distinction between RT and other news outlets. “What’s CNN? What’s MSNBC? Come on!” said Flynn, who also has appeared occasionally as an unpaid on-air analyst for RT and other foreign broadcasters.
Politico: The Kremlin’s Candidate
At a moment of semi-hostility between the U.S. and Russia, the presence of such an important figure at Putin’s table startled current and former members of the Obama administration. “It was extremely odd that he showed up in a tuxedo to the Russian government propaganda arm’s party,” one former Pentagon official told me.
Daily Beast: Trump Embraces Ex-Top Obama Intel Official
Three former U.S. officials said that a trip Flynn took last December to Moscow—where he was filmed sitting at the head table next to Russian President Vladimir Putin during a formal dinner—set off alarms within military and intelligence circles over whether Flynn had notified the U.S. government about his foreign travel, as his security clearance requires.
Mike McSherry, an aide who helped lead Trump’s convention strategy, worked alongside Manafort and Gates to lobby for Putin puppet Yanukovych.
BuzzFeed: Ukraine Lobbying Contract Linked To Manafort Also Involved Another Trump Aide
“Donald Trump’s campaign chairman Paul Manafort is not the only Trump aide to have been involved in lobbying for Ukraine’s pro-Russian ex-president. Mike McSherry, a senior vice president at Mercury Public Affairs who helped lead the Trump campaign’s convention committee strategy last month, is listed in Mercury’s lobbying disclosure forms as having represented a Brussels-based nonprofit group linked to former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych, the European Centre for a Modern Ukraine.”
Howard Lorber, a Trump economic adviser, traveled with Trump to Moscow in the 1990s seeking real estate deals
Washington Post: Another Trump adviser with deep ties to Russia
This week Donald Trump released a new roster of economic advisers, including a businessman with extensive investments in Russia who tried to get a Trump Tower built in Moscow. It’s the latest in a long list of relationships that give Trump a financial stake in warm U.S.-Russian relations. Businessman and investor Howard Lorber already donated $100,000 to the Trump Victory fund, has been named as one of Trump’s “best friends” and even appeared once on “The Apprentice.” He is also president and chief executive of the Vector Group, a holding company that has various business interests in Russia. In 1996, Lorber brought Trump to Moscow to look for opportunities for Trump to lend his famous name to development projects there. “Howard has major investments in Russia,” Trump told Russian politician Alexander Ivanovich Lebed after his trip to Moscow with Lorber, according to a 1997 profile of Trump in the New Yorker.
Boris Epshteyn, a senior Trump adviser and surrogate, moderated a 2013 forum at the “Invest In Moscow!” Conference and has echoed Kremlin talking points on TV.
Huffington Post: When It Comes To Donald Trump’s Russia Ties, It’s All About The Aides
And there’s also Boris Epshteyn, a Trump surrogate who frequently appears on television and describes himself as a senior adviser to the campaign. The Russia-born investment banker and attorney moderated a panel at an October 2013 conference in New York City called “Invest in Moscow!” The panel was mainly comprised of Moscow city government officials, like Sergey Cheremin, a city minister who heads Moscow’s foreign economic and international relations department…. “In Russia, where business and the state are so closely linked, business dealings automatically imply ties to people high up in government as well,” said Kathryn Stoner, an expert in U.S.-Russia relations at Stanford University.
Talking Points Memo: Trump Surrogate Pushes Pro-Putin Line That Russia Hasn’t Seized Crimea
A surrogate for Donald Trump’s campaign argued on Sunday that Russia has not seized Crimea from Ukraine, even though Vladimir Putin seized the region more than two years ago. While discussing the GOP nominee’s recent remarks about Putin on CNN Sunday, campaign surrogate Boris Epshteyn said, “First of all, Russia did not seize Crimea.”
Richard Burt, who has been an adviser to Trump and helped write his first major foreign policy speech, has deep ties to Russia as well.
Reuters: Former Reagan aide helped write Trump foreign policy speech
“I was asked to contribute material” for Trump’s April 27 speech at the Center for the National Interest, a Washington, D.C., think tank, said Richard Burt.
Vice: How Putin’s American Fixers Keep Russian Sanctions Toothless
Richard Burt, a former Reagan White House official who now works at the lobbying firm McLarty Associates, serves on the US-Russia Business Council board. According to the Wall Street Journal, Burt, who has argued against unilateral sanctions against Russia…
Michael Caputo, a former top Trump adviser who also recently resigned, did public relations work for Putin years ago, promoting his image in the Western world.
Washington Post: Inside Trump’s financial ties to Russia and his unusual flattery of Vladimir Putin
An adviser who helped run Trump’s efforts in the New York primary, Michael Caputo, lived in Russia in the 1990s. Caputo also had a contract for several months in 2000 with the Russian conglomerate Gazprom Media to improve Putin’s image in the United States. Caputo declined to comment but told the Buffalo News, his hometown paper, that he was “not proud of the work today. But at the time, Putin wasn’t such a bad guy.”
Trump’s Russia Problems Run Deep, Concerning Experts
Trump’s policies align closely with Putin’s agenda, contrary to American interests.
Op-ed by Former U.S. Ambassador to Russia, Michael McFaul: Why Putin wants a Trump victory (so much he might even be trying to help him)
Putin has rational motives for wanting Trump to win: Trump champions many foreign policies that Putin supports. Trump’s most shocking, pro-Kremlin proposal is to “look into” recognition of Crimea as a part of Russia…. Trump has demanded that other NATO members essentially pay us for protection… Trump has also disparaged our allies in Asia, creating new opportunities for Russian influence…. On the whole, Trump advocates isolationist policies and an abdication of U.S. leadership in the world. He cares little about promoting democracy and human rights. A U.S. retreat from global affairs fits precisely with Putin’s international interests.
Vox: Trump’s policies are objectively pro-Russia
Nothing Russia could do, on its own, would help its foreign policy more than what Trump is proposing. He is literally suggesting the United States transform global politics to make it more favorable to Russian interests.
Slate: Putin’s Puppet: If the Russian president could design a candidate to undermine American interests—and advance his own—he’d look a lot like Donald Trump.
Donald Trump is like the Kremlin’s favored candidates, only more so. He celebrated the United Kingdom’s exit from the EU. He denounces NATO with feeling. He is also a great admirer of Vladimir Putin.
Trump personally has business ties with Russian oligarchs.
Donald Trump on his Miss Universe Contest in Moscow: “Almost all of the oligarchs were in the room.”
Donald Trump Jr.: “Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets. We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia.”
CNN: That time a Russian billionaire paid Trump $95 million for a mansion
Washington Post: Former Mafia-linked figure describes association with Trump
On the 24th floor of Trump Tower, in an office two floors below Donald Trump, Felix Sater was trying to revive his career. The Russian-born businessman had already done a stint in prison for stabbing a man in the face with the stem of a margarita glass, and he was now awaiting sentencing for his role in a Mafia-orchestrated stock fraud scheme… Trump and his lawyers have said that he was not aware of Sater’s criminal past when he first signed on to do business with Sater’s firm, Bayrock Group. Sater’s involvement in the stock fraud was kept secret for years by federal prosecutors because of his role as an informant. But even after elements of Sater’s background were disclosed in a 2007 New York Times article, he remained in close proximity to Trump — at one point using Trump Organization office space and business cards.
Washington Post: “Putin canceled at the last minute, but he sent a decorative lacquered box, a traditional Russian gift, and a warm note, according to Aras Agalarov, a Moscow billionaire who served as a liaison between Trump and the Russian leader. Still, the weekend was fruitful for Trump. He received a portion of the $14 million paid by Agalarov and other investors to bring the pageant to Moscow. Agalarov said he and Trump signed an agreement to build a Trump Tower in the heart of Moscow — at least Trump’s fifth attempt at such a venture.”
Trump and his campaign have been aligned with the Russians while they attempt to defeat Hillary Clinton.
New York Times: Spy Agency Consensus Grows That Russia Hacked D.N.C.
American intelligence agencies have told the White House they now have “high confidence” that the Russian government was behind the theft of emails and documents from the Democratic National Committee, according to federal officials who have been briefed on the evidence.
AP: Donald Trump encourages Russian hackers to spy on Hillary Clinton
“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” Trump said. “I think you’ll be rewarded mightily by our press!”
Washington Post: Trump allies, WikiLeaks and Russia are pushing a nonsensical conspiracy theory about the DNC hacks
Trump campaign surrogates are fueling a conspiracy theory that a murdered Democratic National Committee staffer was connected to the hacking of the DNC, a theory being pushed by WikiLeaks and the Russian state-controlled press.
BuzzFeed: Exclusive: How Ukraine Wooed Conservative Websites
Several conservative bloggers repeated talking points given to them by a proxy group for the Ukrainian government — and at least one writer was paid by a representative of the Ukrainian group, according to documents and emails obtained by BuzzFeed. The Ukrainian campaign began in the run-up to high-stakes Ukrainian parliamentary elections last year, and sought to convince skeptical American conservatives that the pro-Russian Party of Regions, led by President Viktor Yanukovych, deserved American support. During that period, articles echoing Ukrainian government talking points appeared on leading conservative online outlets, including RedState, Breitbart, and Pajamas Media. [emphasis added]
Some experts have gone as far as to say that Putin is explicitly using Trump to further his agenda.
Reuters: Senior ex-CIA official: Putin made Trump ‘an unwitting agent’ of Russia
A former top CIA official attacked Donald Trump on Friday as a danger to national security, saying President Vladimir Putin had made the Republican presidential candidate an “unwitting agent” of Russia. Putin had flattered Trump into supporting positions favorable to Russia, Michael Morell, a longtime CIA officer and former deputy director of the agency, said in an opinion piece in The New York Times. “In the intelligence business, we would say that Mr. Putin had recruited Mr. Trump as an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation,” Morell said”
Politico: Is Putin playing Trump like he did Berlusconi?
[T]he Berlusconi-Putin bromance has acquired a new resonance, as foreign policy analysts and even some U.S. officials see unsettling echoes in the recent long-distance kinship between the Russian leader and Donald J. Trump. It may even suggest that Putin is applying a specific method to the GOP nominee. In recent years Putin has befriended several major Western European politicians, including former leaders of France and Germany, who openly challenge U.S. and European policies toward Russia, including NATO’s buildup in Eastern Europe and economic sanctions punishing Putin’s annexation of Crimea from Ukraine.
Even top Republicans have raised serious concerns about Trump’s relationship with Putin’s Russia.
New York Times: 50 G.O.P. Officials Warn Donald Trump Would Put Nation’s Security ‘at Risk’
Many of those signing it had declined to add their names to the letter released in March. But a number said in recent interviews that they changed their minds once they heard Mr. Trump invite Russia to hack Mrs. Clinton’s email server — a sarcastic remark, he said later — and say that he would check to see how much NATO members contributed to the alliance before sending forces to help stave off a Russian attack. They viewed Mr. Trump’s comments on NATO as an abandonment of America’s most significant alliance relationship. Mr. Trump has said throughout his campaign that he intends to upend Republican foreign policy orthodoxy on everything from trade to Russia, where he has been complimentary of President Vladimir V. Putin, saying nothing about its crackdown on human rights and little about its annexation of Crimea.
Washington Post: Republicans are among a new list of foreign policy experts denouncing Trump
Several Republicans are among a group of former cabinet officers, senior officials and career military officers who denounced Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump on Thursday, calling his recent remarks on the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and Russia “disgraceful.” The open letter, released first to The Washington Post, takes issue with Trump statements that appear to question the alliance, encourage Russia to hack and release Hillary Clinton’s deleted State Department emails, and seem to recognize Russia’s annexation of Crimea, which the United States considers illegitimate.
Trump has praised Putin for a decade, and Putin has returned the favor.
Trump, 2007: “[Putin’s] doing a great job. In rebuilding the image of Russia and also rebuilding Russia period. Forget about image.”
Trump, 2011: “I often speak highly [of Putin] for his intelligence and no-nonsense way…. Putin has also announced his grand vision: the creation of a ‘Eurasian Union’ made up of former Soviet nations that can dominate the region. I respect Putin…”
Trump, 2013, on Putin’s NYT op-ed denouncing American exceptionalism: “I thought he did an amazing job…. He’s making him look like a — he’s the professor and the President is a school child… He really becomes with this letter, almost, the world leader”
Trump, 2013: “Do you think Putin will be going to The Miss Universe Pageant in November in Moscow – if so, will he become my new best friend?”
Washington Post on Trump’s 2013 Miss Universe Contest in Moscow: “Putin canceled at the last minute, but he sent a decorative lacquered box, a traditional Russian gift, and a warm note”
Trump, 2014: “Putin has become a big hero in Russia with an all time high popularity.”
Trump, 2015: “In terms of leadership, [Putin’s] getting an ‘A,’ and our president is not doing so well.”
Putin, 2015 on Trump: “He’s a really brilliant and talented person, without any doubt.”
Trump, 2016: “[Putin] called me a genius, I’m going to disavow it? Are you crazy? Can you believe it? How stupid are they.”
AP, 2016: Russia’s Putin Reaffirms Praise for Trump, Calling Him ‘Bright’
News Source: The Washington Post
Following Donald Trump’s acceptance speech as the Republican party’s nominee for president, Hillary for America Chair John Podesta released a statement criticizing Trump’s portrayal of America. Even more so, Podesta attacked Trump’s divisive rhetoric which will do nothing but divide the country further. He argued that Democrats are focused on issues and ensuring that everyone in America as equal opportunity. A copy of Podesta’s statement is below:
“Tonight, Donald Trump painted a dark picture of an America in decline. And his answer – more fear, more division, more anger, more hate — was yet another reminder that he is temperamentally unfit and totally unqualified to be President of the United States. He offered no real solutions to help working families get ahead or to keep our country safe, just more prejudice and paranoia. America is better than this. America is better than Donald Trump. Next week in Philadelphia, Democrats will focus on issues, not anger. We’ll offer a positive vision for the future based on lifting America up, not tearing Americans down.”
News Source: The New York Times
Today, Hillary Clinton received the endorsement of a unified list of business leaders, many of whom have identified with the Republican Party. Several of the business leaders released statements explaining that they supported Clinton because of her vast experience and her vision for the future of the United States economy. A list of the business leaders is below:
- Miki Agrawal, Founder and CEO of Thinx
- Dan Akerson, Former Chairman and CEO of General Motors
- Richard Anderson, Executive Chairman, Delta Air Lines, Inc.
- Stewart Bainum Jr., Chairman of Choice Hotels International
- James Bell, Former Interim CEO of Boeing; Former Corporate President and CFO of Boeing
- Marc Benioff, Chairman and CEO of Salesforce
- Nathan Blecharczyk, Co-Founder and CTO of Airbnb
- Jeff Brotman, Co-Founder and Chairman of Costco Wholesale Corporation
- Warren E. Buffett, Chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, Inc.
- Robert Burt, Retired Chairman, CEO FMC Corporation; Former Chairman Business Roundtable
- Ron Busby, President and CEO of the U.S. Black Chambers
- Brook Byers, Partner, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
- Peter Chernin, CEO, The Chernin Group
- Brian Chesky, Co-Founder and CEO of Airbnb
- Jim Cicconi, Senior Executive Vice President, AT&T Services, Inc.
- David Crane, Former CEO of NRG Energy, Inc.
- Erroll Davis, Retired Chancellor, University System of Georgia
- Barry Diller, Chairman and Senior Executive of IAC and Expedia
- John Doerr, Partner at Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield, and Byers
- Margot Dorfman, President and CEO of U.S. Women’s Chamber of Commerce
- Candy Ergen, Co-Founder, DISH Network
- Joe Gebbia, Co-Founder and CPO of Airbnb
- Reed Hastings, Founder and CEO of Netflix
- Reid Hoffman, Partner at Greylock
- Drew Houston, Founder and CEO of Dropbox
- George Hume, President and CEO of Basic American Foods
- Irwin Jacobs, Founding Chairman and CEO Emeritus of Qualcomm
- Paul Jacobs, Executive Chairman, Qualcomm
- Leila Janah, Founder and CEO of Sama and Laxmi
- Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Chairman and CEO, Magic Johnson Enterprises
- Robert Johnson, Chairman, The RLJ Companies and Founder of Black Entertainment Television
- Andrea Jung, CEO of Grameen America, and Former CEO of Avon
- Lynn Jurich, CEO and Co-Founder of Sunrun
- David Karp, Founder and CEO of Tumblr
- Ellen Kullman, Former Chair and CEO of DuPont
- Debra Lee, Chairman and CEO of Black Entertainment Television
- Ted Leonsis, Founder and CEO of Monumental Sports & Entertainment
- Aaron Levie, Co-Founder and CEO of Box
- Peter Lowy, CEO of Westfield
- Monica Lozano, Former Chairman and CEO, U.S. Hispanic Media
- Rob Marcus, Former Chairman and CEO Time Warner Cable Inc.
- William L. McComb, CEO (retired) of Liz Claiborne & Fifth and Pacific Companies, Inc.
- Rebecca Minkoff, Founder of Rebecca Minkoff
- Hamid R. Moghadam, Chairman and CEO of Prologis
- James J. Murren, Chairman and CEO, MGM Resorts International and Chairman, MGM Growth Properties
- Charles Phillips, CEO of Infor
- Mark Pincus, Co-Founder of Zynga
- Laura M. Ricketts, Co-Owner, Chicago Cubs
- Gary Rodkin, CEO (retired) of ConAgra Foods
- Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer of Facebook
- Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman of Alphabet
- Jim Sinegal, Co-Founder, Director and former CEO of Costco
- Jeremy Stoppelman, CEO and Co-Founder, Yelp
- Walter Ulloa, Chairman and CEO, Entravision Communications
- Wendell P. Weeks, Chairman of the Board, CEO and President, Corning Incorporated
- Anne Wojcicki, CEO and Co-Founder, 23andme
News Source: Fortune
On Wednesday night, Hillary Rodham Clinton attended a private fundraiser in New York City. The event was held at the home of Howard Lutnick, Chairman and CEO of Cantor Fitzgerald. As with all private fundraisers, it was closed to the press.
Hillary Rodham Clinton was interviewed for a “Chair Chat,” an online series hosted by South Carolina Democratic Party Chairman, Jaime Harrison. In the interview, Clinton was asked about a number of non-political topics including her granddaughter and her favorite TV shows. But a number of political topics were covered as well including race, education, and income inequality. The interview was filed on July 23 and published August 3, and the full video of the interview is above.
News Source: Time