Are you okay with a Russian take-over of our government?

We don’t know what else explains the deconstruction going on throughout our government, from the State Department to the EPA.  So we are compiling a handy reference chart of members of the Trump Administration and Congress who have, through their various actions, appear to be gleefully embracing a new degree of Russian influence, interference and deconstruction in the U.S. and those who clearly are not.  So far, we have about 18, more than enough to field a baseball team for Russia.  We, however, are “normal” Americans and, as such, we are extremely upset about Russia’s intrusions into our electoral process and government.  We are not “okay” with any of our leaders being complicit with Russian “cyberwar aide” to the Trump campaign so they can take-over U.S. Government for the purposes of increasing Russian oil profits, decreasing American regulations (that protect the public), diluting our influence abroad or any other reason. We think if these leaders are not opposing this clear and obvious Russian take-over with everything they have, then they are likely complicit with this treason. Frankly, we are looking to see which leader will be the first one willing to call all this blatant treason “treason!” (Postscript: We also oppose the take-over of our government by Christian fundamentalist extremists and their white nationalist/Nazi collaborators.  We side with the separation of church and state, so we group those espousing extreme religious views as plain old fringe crazy. It seems Trump has quite a few of these folks as well, so we added a third team, the Wackos.)

NAME ROLE WHOSE SIDE?
EVIDENCE
EXECUTIVE BRANCH
Donald Trump U.S. President RUSSIA See the Trump-Russia Dossier for a fairly complete explanation of Trump’s tit-for-tat bargain with Putin. We suspect that there are more ways that Trump expects to profit from his “Devil’s Bargain” with the Russians. Trump has repeatedly denounced allegations that Russians hacked the election on his behalf and instead blasts the intelligence community for their findings.

Mike Pence Vice President WACKO Unclear what his knowledge of or involvement in Trump’s pro-Russian activity is. He’s not calling for an independent investigation. He was unwilling to assert American moral superiority over Russia and supports Trump’s claims about Russia when asked repeatedly. Pence is scary for his non-scientific, extreme psuedo-religious beliefs (ie hostile, hate-filled, scape-goating and uncharitable), we are forced to group him with a growing sub-faction that can only be described as Christian-Militarist-Wackos, who seem to support fascist-style regime control to prevent social contamination from minorities, gays, and non-Christians.

Steve Bannon Chief Strategist RUSSIA Bannon is a “traditionalist” leader of the “Alt-Right” movement (alt-Russian?), which is a white supremacist, neo-Nazi group, philosophically similar to those in political power in Russia. Considered to be a Leninist, seeking to destabilize democracy in favor of Judeo-Christian form of anti-Islam fascism.

Jeff Sessions Attorney General RUSSIA Forced to recuse himself from investigations related to the 2016 presidential campaign, which would include any Russian interference in the electoral process, and now under pressure to resign, because of lies he told to the Judiciary Committee during his confirmation hearing denying having met with any Russians, when he met several times with the Russian Ambassador.

Michael Flynn (Former) National Security Adviser RUSSIA Flynn attended a meeting with Russian ambassador Kislyak and Kushner but lied about the content of those meetings to Pence. Forced to resign from his appointment.

Wilbur Ross Secretary of Commence RUSSIA During the Clinton administration, Ross served on the board of the U.S.-Russia Investment Fund, working to bolster businesses in post-Cold-War Russia. During his confirmation, questions arose about his ownership of a bank on Cyprus that, according to Kevin Hall, “caters to wealthy Russians.” Oh, yeah, then he brokered a deal for Trump with a wealthy Russian oligarch that gave Trump a $40 million profit.

Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster National Security Adviser USA A battle-tested veteran of both the Persian Gulf war and the second Iraq war, General McMaster is considered one of the military’s most independent-minded officers, sometimes at a cost to his own career. Unlike with his predecessor Flynn, McMaster does not support normalizing relations with Russia.  McMaster sees Russia as a “hostile revisionist power” that “annex(es) territory, intimidates our allies, develops nuclear weapons, and uses proxies under the cover of modernized conventional militaries.”

Rex Tillerson Secretary of State (Former CEO of ExxonMobil) RUSSIA As the head of ExxonMobil, Tillerson helped negotiate a massive agreement between the Russian government and ExxonMobil-Rosneft, a partnership between the two companies. Tillerson was subsequently awarded the “Order of Friendship” by Putin and appeared to be extremely friendly with Putin. He stands to personally earn hundreds of millions from loosening US sanctions on Russia, which are holding up completion of that deal valued at $50 billion.

General Jim Mattis Secretary of Defense USA President Trump’s choice for secretary of defense, General Jim Mattis, was a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution until being confirmed as the 26th United States Secretary of Defense. He studied national security issues, specifically strategy, innovation, the effective use of military force and the Middle East while writing a book on leadership. Mattis placed Russia first among principal threats facing the United States, arguing for greater American support for European allies to counter what he said were Moscow’s attempts to shatter the North Atlantic security alliance. One of the authors of “A Blueprint For American Security” published while at the Hoover Institution, Mattis is well aware of the challenges the U.S. faces from such antagonists as Russia, China, continuing wars in the Middle East and “metastasizing” terrorism.

Betsy DeVos Secretary of Education WACKO Married to Amway fortune heir and daughter to ultra-conservative, extremist wackos, who use their wealth to advance psuedo-religious beliefs that essentially further their fortunes. Sister to Erik Prince, founder of Blackwater, a far-right mercenary group. DeVoses want to kill public education and teach psuedo-science like “creationism.” Investigators traced secretive communications between the Trump Organization and servers in Alfa Bank, a Russian bank with connections to Putin, to a server owned by Spectrum Health in Michigan. The DeVos family helped fund Spectrum Health and Betsy’s husband is chairman of the board. It seems that within the Spectrum nexxus, well-placed Trump and/or Russian operatives are doing certain IT work on behalf of Trump and Putin, using the hospital resources that are available to them.

Paul Manafort (Former) Campaign Manager RUSSIA Manafort “made a career out of stealthily reinventing the world’s nastiest tyrants as noble defenders of freedom” and most recently worked on the “campaign” for Putin puppet, deposed Ukrainian President Victor Yanukovych. Manafort is now under Human-Right investigation for the murder of protesters during the demonstrations, which led to Yanukovych’s ouster. Given how well linked Manafort is with Russian interests, his role changing the Republican platform to soften its support of Ukraine against the Russian incursion, and his client lists, which have included Philippine strongman Ferdinand Marcos and despots from the Dominican Republic, Nigeria, Kenya, Equatorial Guinea, and Somalia among others (which the Center for Public Integrity detailed in a report called “The Torturers’ Lobby) it would frankly seem downright remarkable if Manafort wasn’t actually working directly for Putin.

Donald Trump Jr. Son RUSSIA Benefiting from a lot of Russian investments. Stated in 2008, “Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets” and “We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia.”

Ivanka Trump Daughter RUSSIA Ivanka has a close friendships with Dasha Zhukova, the art-collector wife of oligarch Roman Abramovich, one of the richest men in Russia. Abramovich isn’t just the owner of the Chelsea soccer club; he’s reportedly a member of Putin’s inner circle. Ivanka is also friends with the ex-wife of Rupert Murdoch, Wendi Deng, who at one point was rumored to be dating Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Jared Kushner Advisor (and Son-in-Law) to the President RUSSIA Has considerable Russian business connections, including having Yuri Milner invest in a stake in a Kushner real estate investment company and a “friendship” with oligarch Roman Abramovich, close friend of Putin’s and owner of Evraz, a steel manufacturer, which may benefit from Trump’s removal of the provision requiring TransCanada to use American steel for its KeystoneXL pipeline.

Kellyanne Conway Counselor to the President RUSSIA It turns out that Kellyanne’s husband, George Conway, represented a client accused of bribing Russian officials in order to secure a contract with the prosecutor general of Russia, we learned recently. Furthermore, she has not condemned any aspect of the Russian interference in the election and castigated Gen. Flynn not for his covert meetings with the Russian Ambassador but only for mis-characterizing his conversation to Vice President Pence, both of which caused him to be fired.

Roger Stone Longtime Advisor RUSSIA During the campaign, Stone drew attention for having inside knowledge on the WikiLeaks document releases — releases linked to Russian interests by the government. First he tweeted about his connection, then he denied it: why?  The Times reports that Stone is possibly under investigation by the U.S. government for his links to Russia.

Carter Page (Former) Advisor RUSSIA Page served briefly as part of Trump’s National Security team but Trump has tried to distance himself from Page, especially after Page’s visit to Russia a week before the Russian hacking of the DNC services came to light. Under pressure,  Page admitted that he met with Kislyak last year during the Republican convention in Cleveland. He also has repeatedly addressed Russian business groups in that country, including twice in 2016 in which he criticism the U.S. Page ed in Russia as an investment banker for nearly a decade.

J.D. Gordon (Former) Advisor RUSSIA Gordon also served as part of Trump’s national security advisory team, was a onetime Pentagon spokesman who also served as an adviser to the campaign. Gordon, like Page, reportedly spoke with Kislyak in Cleveland.

Erik Price Secret Advisor WACKO Betsy DeVos’s brother, Erik Prince, the founder of the mercenary firm Blackwater, has been quietly advising Trump’s transition team, including helping vet Cabinet picks. Allies with Robert Mercer, the billionaire hedge funder, and contributor to his pro-Trump super PACs Make America Number 1 super PAC, Erik is seen as advocating for a revival of a brutal  kill/capture program, like one conducted in Vietnam that targeted the Viet Cong as a military force, to be directed towards to the funders of Islamic terror. 

Joseph Schmitz Foreign Policy Advisor WACKO Trump selected Joseph Schmitz, a former Pentagon inspector general with ties to the Center for Security Policy, as a foreign policy advisor.  Schmitz is described as a “radical Christian supremacist with an ‘insane worldview'” who was forced out of his job on accusations that he protected officials in the George W. Bush administration who were suspected of wrongdoing. He is closely associated with Erik Prince and is a former executive with Blackwater.

Reverend Franklin Graham Inauguration Prayer RUSSIA Graham visited Russian in 2015 where he met with Vladimir Putin and heaped praise including calling him a hero for his defense of Christianity and his hostility to Muslims and LGBTQ folk. Graham slammed President Obama for supporting “policies that contradict the teachings of God” and praised the Russian president for “protecting Russian young people against homosexual propaganda.” Graham reportedly said, “I call for prayers for the president of Russia, who is protecting traditional Christianity.” Graham also praised Russian involvement in Syria, which the Russian Orthodox Church has called a “holy battle.” Putin receives support from many conservative Christians in the U.S., including like Evangelical leader Franklin Graham, National Organization for Marriage leader Brian Brown, and American Family Association spokesperson Bryan Fischer. Bryan Fischer called Putin a “lion of Christianity” and called upon U.S. lawmakers to adopt similar speech prohibitions; Matt Barber marveled that Putin was able to “out-Christian our once-Christian nation”; Sam Rohrer called Putin “the moral leader of the world”; Scott Lively lavished praise on Putin for “ championing traditional marriage and Christian values ”; and Rush Limbaugh applauded Putin for stopping “a full-frontal assault on what has always been considered normalcy.”

LEGISLATIVE BRANCH: SENATE
Mitch McConnell Senate Majority Leader (R-Kentucky)
RUSSIA McConnell obstructed the disclosure of Russian hacking prior to the election, as requested by Obama and members of the Intelligence community, so that voters could know the extent of illegal activity. Continues to reject bipartisan calls for a special committee to investigate Russian interference in the U.S. election, as requested by Senators McCain, Graham, Schumer, Reed, Cardin, Feinstein, Leahy and more. Claims that the Senate Intelligence Committee can handle the investigation.

Richard Burr
Senator (R-North Carolina), chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee
?? Senator Burr acquiesced to Trump requests to that he attempt to discredit unfavorable coverage of Russian contacts with the Trump campaign by CNN and The New York Times.  This has caused many to question the impartiality of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s investigation. “I didn’t do anything that jeopardized or compromised in any way the integrity of the investigation,” Burr said during an interview. He added that he had “simply had two conversations with two different media outlets on one specific thing. I didn’t do anything inappropriate or in any way compromise the integrity of the investigation.”

John McCain Senator (R-Arizona), Chairman of the Armed Services Committee
USA McCain supports continued investigations into Russian hacking. In early January, along with Senator Lindsey Graham, Senator McCain urged Trump to punish Russia for its role in interfering with the election. “We need to come to grips with it and get to the bottom of it and overall come up with a strategy in this new form of warfare that can basically harm our economy, harm our elections, harm our national security,” he said.

Rand Paul Senator (D-Maryland), Senate Foreign Relations Committee
RUSSIA Senator John McCain had this to say about Rand Paul. “You are achieving the objectives of Vladimir Putin . . . trying to dismember this small country which has already been the subject an attempted coup. . . .  If [a senator objects to actions which strengthen NATO], they are now carrying out the desires and ambitions of Vladimir Putin and I do not say that lightly.”  If Senator McCain accuses Rand Paul of being on Russia’s side, that’s enough for us.

Benjamin L Cardin Senator (D-Maryland), Senate Foreign Relations Committee
USA As the Ranking Democrat, Cardin introduced legislation in January calling for the creation of an independent, non-partisan commission, similar to the 9/11 Commision, to comprehensively investigate allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Dianne Feinstein Senator (D-California) USA Called for the creation of an independent, non-partisan commission to comprehensively investigate allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Patrick J. Leahy Senator (D-Vermont) USA Called for the creation of an independent, non-partisan commission to comprehensively investigate allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 election.

LEGISLATIVE BRANCH: HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) House Speaker
RUSSIA Ryan “condemned state-sponsored cyberattacks on our democratic process” but stopped short of calling for a congressional investigation into Russian interference in the U.S. presidential election. He has not joined in calling for a “bipartisan, independent commission” to investigate Russian hacking.

Nancy Pelosi (D-Cal.) House Minority Leader USA Pelosi supports a proposal to form a bipartisan, independent commission to investigate Russian hacking into our election. “The U.S. intelligence community has determined that Russia interfered in U.S. elections,” Pelosi said. “There must be no equivocation or ignoring the seriousness of the intelligence community’s conclusion about Russia’s actions. Regardless of the outcome of the election, the American people deserve to know the truth and a commitment to protect our democracy from foreign meddling.”

Jason Chaffetz
(R-Utah) Chair of the House Oversight Committee
RUSSIA Chaffetz, already under an ethics cloud because of inappropriately tweeting about an internal letter from FBI Director Comey, Chaffetz has refused to investigate clear conflicts of interest between Trump or any number of Trump’s cabinet and foreign leaders.

Darrell Issa (R-Cal.) Member of the House Judiciary Committee USA Issa became one of the few Republican representatives to state publicly the need for an independent investigation into Russia’s reported election meddling.

Devin Nunes (R-Cal.) Chair of the House Intelligence Committee, also served on Trump’s National Security Transition team RUSSIA Nunes is responsible for leading the House’s investigation of Russian meddling but he has shown that he is compromised.  There is now reason to believe that Nunes is colluding with Trump, in that through an extraordinary violation of protocol, he reported Intelligence information to Trump, without the approval of the committee which is akin to a prosecutor taking evidence from the plaintiff and reporting on it to the defendant.

 

Reference Links and Articles:

1.
The Guardian, “What we know – and what’s true – about the Trump-Russia dossier” by Luke Harding, January 11, 2017
2.
The Washington Post, “Mike Pence’s awkward — and telling — response to whether the U.S. is ‘morally superior’ to Russia” by Aaron Blake, February 6, 2017
3.
Quartz, “Want to understand what Trump and Bannon are up to? Look to the Russian Revolution of 1917” by Anastasia Edel
4.
Time, “John McCain and Lindsey Graham Urge Donald Trump to Punish Russia Over Hacking” by Madeline Farber, January 8, 2017
5.
Salon, “Trump’s Russia woes continue: Jared Kushner also had undisclosed Russian meeting” by Matthew Rozsa, March 3, 2017
6.
PoliticusUSA, “Opinion: Trump Lies and a Russian Profits As Keystone XL Will Not Use American Steel” by Rmuse, Mar. 8, 2017
7.
Mercury News, “Ivanka Trump, the Russia scandal and her billionaire’s social network” by Martha Ross, March 6, 2017
8.
New York Times: “Senate and House Leaders Call for Inquiry of Russian Hacking in Election” By Jennifer Steinhauer, Dec. 12, 2016
9.
Snopes “Hack Job” by Bethania Palma
10.
Huffington Post “Paul Ryan’s Bizarre Response To Russian Meddling In The Presidential Election” by Matt Fuller, Dec. 12, 2016
11.
PoliticusUSA, “Ethics Complaint Filed Against Rep. Jason Chaffetz for Releasing Comey Clinton Email Letter” Jason Easley, Oct. 31, 2016
12.
The Washington Post, “Top Republican says special prosecutor should investigate Russian meddling in Trump’s election” by Amy B. Wang, February 25, 2017
13.
Mother Jones, “Can Republicans Be Trusted to Investigate Trump’s Russia Scandal?” by David Corn, February 27, 2017
14.
Salon, “Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard Burr reeling from phone call on behalf of Trump” by Matthew Rozsa,  February 28, 2017
15. New York Times, “Trump Campaign Aides Had Repeated Contacts With Russian Intelligence” by Michael S. Schmidt, Mark Mazzetti and Matt Apuzzo, Feb. 14, 2017
16. The Washington Post, “Attorney General Jeff Sessions will recuse himself from any probe related to 2016 presidential campaign” by Karoun Demirjian, Ed O’Keefe, Sari Horwitz and Matt Zapotosky, March 2, 2017
17. Bluedot Daily, “Kellyanne Conway Now Discovered to Have Russian Bribes Connection” by cpowell, March 4, 2017
18. The Rachel Maddow Show, “New Commerce Secretary at nexus of lucrative Trump Russian deal” Feb. 27, 2017
19. Huffington Post, “Former Trump Adviser Roger Stone Admits Collusion With WikiLeaks, Then Deletes It”  by Marina Fang, March 5, 2017
20. MMO Champion, “Russia hacks Trump during campaign using Devos-controlled company” by Mlztickow, March 3, 2017
21.  New York Times, “Trump Choose s H.R. McMaster as National Security Adviser” by Peter Baker and Michael R. Gordon, February 20, 2017
22.  CounterPunch, “McMaster Takes Charge: Trump Relinquishes Control of Foreign Policy” by Mike Whitney, February 24, 2017
23.  Slate “The Quiet American” by Franklin Foer, April 28, 2016
24.  Heatstreet, “EXCLUSIVE: FBI ‘Granted FISA Warrant’ Covering Trump Camp’s Ties To Russia by Louise Mensch, November 7, 2016
25  Washington Post, “Never Trump’ Republicans join call for select committee to investigate Russia and Trump“, Josh Rogin, March 14, 2017
26. NCRM, “Franklin Graham Goes To Russia, Praises Putin, Slams America, Attacks Obama, Denigrates Gay People” by David Badash, 11/03/15
27. New York Magazine, “Why the Christian Right Shares Trump’s Affection for Putin
28. RightWingWatch, “The Religious Right Shares Trump’s Putin Crush” by Peter Mongomery, September 9, 2016
29. The Washington Post, “Placing Russia first among threats, Defense nominee warns of Kremlin attempts to ‘break’ NATO” by Missy Ryan and Dan Lamothe, January 12, 2017
30. Hoover Institution at Stanford University, “General Jim Mattis: Biography
31.   Center for American Progress, “The DeVos Dynasty: A Family of Extremists” by Catherine Brown and Ulrich Boser, January 23, 2017
32.   Democracy Now!, “Scahill: Blackwater Founder Erik Prince, the Brother of Betsy DeVos, Is Secretly Advising Trump” by Jeremy Scahill and Amy Goodman, January 18, 2017
33. Democracy Now!, “Donald Trump’s Top Foreign Adviser, Joseph Schmitz, is a Former Blackwater Executive” transcript of interview by and between Jeremy Scahill and Amy Goodman, January 18, 2017
34. Buzzfeed, “Betsy DeVos’s Brother, The Founder Of Blackwater, Is Setting Up A Private Army For China, Sources Say” by Aram Roston, February 16, 2017
35.   DailyKOS, “Fireworks In The Senate: John McCain Is Livid And Just Accused Rand Paul Of Working For Putin” by ursulafaw, March 15, 2017
36. LA Times Editorial: “Nunes’ freelancing threatens an investigation into Russian meddling” by the LA Times Editorial Board, March 24, 2017
    (Last update as of 3/24/17. See: here for more recent updates.)

15 thoughts on “Who in power seems okay with a Russian take-over of the U.S. Government?

  1. Northeast has been hit by a massive snowstorm. What is the status of the March 15 assembly in Washington before the Supreme Court?

    1. Kathryn–I can’t be there, but it is beautiful sunny today in Michigan though cold–wear boots and gloves and you will be better off than the cherry blossom buds! Good luck and thanks for planning to represent those of us nationwide who can’t be there.

    2. The SCOTUS Justices discussed the docket. The results will be announced on the website on Monday morning at 10AM via the website. You can also call the SCOTUS and talk to a clerk directly. Please everyone realize that no matter what the outcome might be, this is a historic and unprecedented step. That the Justices felt it fit to entertain this case at all is a HUGE sign to the American people that the 3rd branch of government is up and running, ready to defend the constitution and the rights and civil liberties we hold dear. If it is not this case, it will be another. Big big kudos to the organizers of the petition. So thankful for your efforts.

  2. Why cant we get this man out before it is too late? You dont have to have a college education to see through this whole situation! Just common sense! Soon it will be too late! You can see it coming! The Republican party is playing with our lives by not working with Democrats to oust this whole bunch that have taken us over! The Republicans want to be in office so bad, they dont care how they get there! Well they are there and I hope someone gets them and this whole bunch out! Putin has something on Donald Trump or Donald Trump is so sick that we are all in a very dangerous situation!

  3. I have been following this Writ since December, and gratified that it has progressed. Recent developments would render it almost unthinkable that the Supreme Court would not step in to save our democracy. Ironically, many are not aware of this Writ, and some are sceptics. Prove them wrong.

  4. Regarding Betsey Devos: Her brother is Erik Prince, the founder of Blackwater, a far right private military group guilty of war crimes and funded by The Mercer Family. He is reported to be secretly advising Trump. This information is missing from the list. https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/education/news/2017/01/23/296947/the-devos-dynasty-a-family-of-extremists/ https://www.democracynow.org/2017/1/18/scahill_blackwater_founder_erik_prince_the https://www.buzzfeed.com/aramroston/betsy-devoss-brother-is-setting-up-a-private-army-for-china?utm_term=.dmWV8a2j#.ixG6kMNJ

      1. REVOTE is great but we need to reach the uneducated Trump supporters w the truth. It would be an unimaginable tragedy if SCOTUS upholds REVOTE and these people came out and voted for him again.
        There must be a way…

      2. Bannon does not hide, and is very blatant about, his plans for deconstructing America. This is a very serious and alarming situation, which does not look good for America’s future. In fact, he intends to bring us backwards, very far backwards. America cannot wait for impeachment. The Supreme Court must do it’s job and nullify the election. This is the only way we will be at ourselves of these parasites that have been thrown at us. If not, it will be up to the people to act. Bannon is the real threat. I cannot believe that the Supreme Court would let the citizens down. Please act on our behalf. America cannot wait much longer.

        1. Rex Tillerson is working with Russia. Exxon Mobil has the technology that Putin needs to obtain the oil and eventually a vast amount of money. Tillerson has already been awarded Russia’s highest award. He is in place as Secretary of State for this purpose. Follow the money, the future oil money once the GOP lifts sanctions against Russia. This must be prevented. It’s up to the Supreme Court to nullify the election. Trump is moving too fast and we cannot keep up with his nefarious deeds.

  5. Bravo! The best idea yet. Godspeed, even IF you are atheists. I noticed that the Netherlands used a paper ballots system when they reelected their PM last week. I want to recommend we do this as well. That awful Geert Wilders fellow lost! I no longer trust our computer based voting at all. Vladimir Putin wins time and again, somehow. I don’t want this for us! I’m so tired of the wrong people winning too.

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