Saturday, September 10, 2016

Evan McMullin Questions Trump's Russia Ties

Evan McMullin questions Donald Trump's Russian Ties

Trump has a history of admiring strong leadership, even if it is authoritarian.  During the 2016 Republican primaries, Trump created a controversy by re-tweeting a quote echoing Italian dictator Mussilini. Just after the brutal suppression of the Tianamen Square protests in Beijing in 1989, Trump had words admiring the strong leadership shown by the Chinese Communists in regaining control .

Trump surrogates, including Trump's Vice Presidential choice Governor Mike Pence (R-IN), reaffirmed Trump's bias towards strong leadership.  Gary Kasparov, the former Chess Grand Master turned Russian dissident, had some strong words about liking Putin with strong leadership.

However, some Trump opponents believe that it goes much deeper than Trump's admiration for authoritarian impluses.  Independent Presidential candidate Evan McMullin (I-UT), a former CIA officer, drew upon his intelligence contacts to question Trump's Russian ties. 

This does not seem like idle speculation from an election opponent.  Former high level Trump staffer Paul Manafort was forced to depart from the Trump campaign as shady Russian business ties were severely scrutinized,  including  helping route $12.7 million to lobby for pro Russian Ukrainian President Victor Yanukovych .  The 2016 Republican Party platform removed references to arming Ukraine against pro-Russian forces was facilitated by Frank Memourd , a longtime Manafort man who worked Black Sea energy issues at the State Department.

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