Steve Bannon: Trump campaign's meeting with Russians was "treasonous" and "unpatriotic" (Update: Trump says Bannon has "lost his mind") | Arkansas Blog

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Steve Bannon: Trump campaign's meeting with Russians was "treasonous" and "unpatriotic" (Update: Trump says Bannon has "lost his mind")

Posted By on Wed, Jan 3, 2018 at 10:51 AM

click to enlarge CHAIN OF FOOLS: Bannon weighs in. - WIKIMEDIA
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  • CHAIN OF FOOLS: Bannon weighs in.

The Guardian has the scoop on a new Michael Wolff book in which Steve Bannon calls the Trump Tower meeting between key Trump associates and staffers and a group of Russians "treasonous" and "unpatriotic": 

Bannon, speaking to author Michael Wolff, warned that the investigation into alleged collusion with the Kremlin will focus on money laundering and predicted: “They’re going to crack Don Junior like an egg on national TV.” ...

[Bannon] is particularly scathing about a June 2016 meeting involving Trump’s son Donald Jr, son-in-law Jared Kushner, then campaign chairman Paul Manafort and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya at Trump Tower in New York. A trusted intermediary had promised documents that would “incriminate” rival Hillary Clinton but instead of alerting the FBI to a potential assault on American democracy by a foreign power, Trump Jr replied in an email: “I love it.”

The meeting was revealed by the New York Times in July last year, prompting Trump Jr to say no consequential material was produced. Soon after, Wolff writes, Bannon remarked mockingly: “The three senior guys in the campaign thought it was a good idea to meet with a foreign government inside Trump Tower in the conference room on the 25th floor – with no lawyers. They didn’t have any lawyers.

“Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad shit, and I happen to think it’s all of that, you should have called the FBI immediately.”
More colorful commentary from Bannon:

“You realise where this is going,” he is quoted as saying. “This is all about money laundering. Mueller chose [senior prosecutor Andrew] Weissmann first and he is a money-laundering guy. Their path to fucking Trump goes right through Paul Manafort, Don Jr and Jared Kushner … It’s as plain as a hair on your face.”

Last month it was reported that federal prosecutors had subpoenaed records from Deutsche Bank, the German financial institution that has lent hundreds of millions of dollars to the Kushner property empire. Bannon continues: “It goes through Deutsche Bank and all the Kushner shit. The Kushner shit is greasy. They’re going to go right through that. They’re going to roll those two guys up and say play me or trade me.”
For your mental health, I would advise not trying to follow the beat by beat too closely and wait until we see what Mueller actually produces. This cast of characters is so full of goons, liars, and fools that it's hard to see through the fog of bluster and blunder. Bannon is, shall we say, not a clarifying presence. There is ample evidence of widespread corruption in the Trump orbit. His supporters don't care and here we are.

Meanwhile, here's an entertaining chapter from Wolff's book — excerpted by New York magazine — on the chaos that, according to Wolff's account, ensued when Trump and his team, who expected to lose, actually won. Basically everyone around Trump views him as an utter buffoon; they muddle through. Juicy tidbits abound. (Grain of salt: Wolff, like some of the key sources he relied upon, has his own reputation as a bullshitter.)

Update: The White House responds: Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders says Wolff's book is "trashy tabloid fiction." Trump says Bannon has "lost his mind" and "has nothing to do with me or my presidency."

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