The Obama White House met with Ukraine officials to give the Russia collusion tale its start. It’s the first known instance of Obama getting involved as Donald Trump was rising in the polls, before the primary.
In January 2016, the White House held a meeting with Ukraine, saying they wanted to reinvigorate the Party of Regents case. It was the case against lobbyists Paul Manafort and former White House Counsel Greg Craig.
The meeting, confirmed by multiple participants and contemporaneous memos, brought some of Ukraine’s top corruption prosecutors and investigators face to face with members of former President Obama’s National Security Council (NSC), the FBI, State Department and Department of Justice (DOJ).
The Americans’ objectives at the meeting included two politically hot investigations: one that touched Vice President Joe Biden’s family and one that involved a lobbying firm linked closely to then-candidate Trump.
This set off a mad scramble in Ukraine. The Ukrainians ended up sharing a ledger with Manafort’s name on it but they left out Craig’s name. He should have been on it too.
That started the collusion probe.
John Solomon provides details in his Op-Ed on The Hill.
Previously, Politico reported that the Ukraine Embassy in Washington assisted Clinton’s campaign through a DNC contractor. The Ukraine Embassy acknowledges it got requests for assistance from the DNC staffer to find dirt on Manafort but denies it provided any improper assistance.
Now we have more concrete evidence that the larger Ukrainian government also was being pressed by the Obama administration to help build the Russia collusion narrative. And that onion is only beginning to be peeled.
But what is already confirmed by Ukrainians looks a lot more like assertive collusion with a foreign power than anything detailed in the Mueller report.
JOE AND HUNTER BIDEN’S SKETCHY DEAL
The information about Hunter Biden which Solomon touched on has been reported at the Sentinel for years, most recently earlier this month.
Biden described how he threatened Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in March 2016 that the Obama administration would pull $1 billion in U.S. loan guarantees, sending the former Soviet republic toward insolvency, if it didn’t immediately fire Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin.
At that very moment, the same prosecutor was preparing to interview Biden’s son Hunter who was preparing to transfer more than $3 million out of the country to the United States. After he was fired, the case was moved to another agency where it was shut down.
The prosecutor he got fired was leading a wide-ranging corruption probe into the natural gas firm Burisma Holdings that employed Biden’s younger son, Hunter, as a board member.
Banking records show regular transfers of large sums of money from Burisma, which was under investigation for corruption, to Hunter Biden’s firm Rosemont Seneca Partners LLC, in 2014 and 2015, adding up to over $3 million, John Solomon writes.
While Biden was overseeing Ukraine as the point man, his son was walking away with cash from a company under investigation. And Biden got the prosecutor investigating all that fired.
Ukraine has evidence and has been trying to get it to the U.S. Justice Department for six months and gets no response, according to Solomon.