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Seth Abramson
(THREAD) New evidence suggests Rick Gates' plea has much more to do with Russia than we thought. And that's because it may have more to do with Trump advisor Erik Prince and Trump fundraiser/RNC deputy finance chair Elliott Broidy than we thought. Hope you'll read on and share.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
1/ When Gates pleaded guilty, the White House insisted his crimes had nothing to do with Trump or Russia. But it's increasingly clear the reason Mueller offered Gates a plea deal did in fact have to do with Russia-related information Gates had about not just Manafort but others.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
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2/ First, understand how significant Gates was to Trump's campaign: he was its Deputy Campaign Manager; he ran its operations at the RNC, where Trump campaign aides made contact with Russian nationals and subsequently changed the RNC platform to benefit Putin and lied about it...
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
3/ ...per media reports, he was effectively running Trump's campaign—more so than Manafort—for several months in the summer of 2016; when Manafort was fired, Trump stayed in contact with his former Campaign Manager and declined to fire Gates, instead giving him a critical role...
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
4/ ...as his campaign's liaison to the RNC, a move which at the time surprised political observers because (a) that was a critical campaign role, and (b) it was assumed that Gates, Manafort's deputy, would've been removed from the campaign at the same time Manafort was because...
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
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5/ ...like Manafort, Gates had ties to the Ukraine and therefore should've been as big a liability as Manafort was—by then—thought to be, at least publicly; Trump then made him Deputy Chairman of his inaugural committee (a key role) during the transition, which we now know was...
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
6/ ...lousy with secret meetings and calls with Russian nationals—even as Trump (and, one presumes, let's be honest, Gates as well) stayed in touch with Manafort behind the scenes (and of course Trump and Manafort lived in the same building and could meet up whenever they liked).
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
7/ So Gates was at the top of Trump's campaign and transition; was at the top of the campaign and transition at all points at which suspicious Trump-Russia contact occurred; and was definitively tied to that contact, at least in terms of the lied-about platform change at the RNC.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
8/ But Trump's decision not to fire Gates in mid-2016, but put him in a key position as the link between himself and the RNC, never sat right with me, or with many others in the media. Gates came in with Manafort and had all the same liabilities; so why didn't he go out with him?
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
9/ Indeed, Trump responded to the *loss* of Manafort (against Trump's wishes, and only in public, to be clear) by *promoting* Manafort's equally compromised deputy to a position of even *greater* prominence and power than he had before—which he stayed in through the inauguration.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
10/ And now Rick Gates has pleaded guilty. Immediately after that happened, sources in the White House successfully got the media to pass on (essentially without analysis) two lies: (a) Gates wasn't a particularly prominent Trump-campaign figure; (b) he'd no knowledge of Russia.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
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11/ But you know who Gates was linked up with as a result of Trump shocking the media and naming him his RNC liaison? The man pictured atop this thread, Elliott Brody, who less than 90 days after Gates ceased to be Trump's RNC liaison became the deputy finance chair of the RNC.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
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12/ Days after Gates was indicted, McClatchy reported Mueller was looking into new charges against Gates involving a shady film-production scheme. As part of that scheme, two producers sent $100K in fraudulently-obtained funds to a nonprofit run by Broidy.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
13/ That wasn't the first time Gates was involved with Broidy: Broidy was Vice Chairman of the Trump Victory Committee during the 2016 campaign, a joint operation between Trump and the RNC, which linkage therefore—per Trump's surprising summer promotion of Gates—was run by Gates.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
14/ As soon as the campaign ended, Gates and Broidy continued working together, this time on Trump's inaugural committee—for which Broidy was the Vice Chairman and Gates the Deputy Chairman. So the compromised-by-Ukraine-cash Gates was hand in glove with Broidy for *many* months.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
15/ And after he worked with the compromised-by-Ukraine-cash Gates for many months, Broidy was rewarded by the RNC with a promotion of his own—to deputy finance chairman. So Trump saw to Rick Gates' elevation, and the RNC saw to Broidy's. Both sides of that partnership prospered.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
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16/ Three weeks ago, a story dropped suggesting that Broidy's wife was trying to collect millions of dollars in return for influencing Trump Administration policy.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
17/ Two days later, the George Nader news dropped—Nader, a Trump insider-turned-Mueller-informant, established that Erik Prince had lied about his Trump-sanctioned secret meeting with a Russian in the Seychelles—and Nader was immediately tied to Broidy too.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
18/ Lest you wonder if Broidy is only connected to Nader, not Prince, understand first that Broidy is in the same niche industry as Prince—private Middle East military contractors—specifically in the UAE, which is where Prince lives. He's tied to the UAE royal family—like Prince.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
19/ But wait! I'm just getting warmed up. Just four days after the Broidy-Nader scandal (which itself was two days after Broidy's wife's scandal), this bombshell dropped: Broidy was possibly connected to a scandal involving (wait for it) Russian sanctions.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
20/ According to docs held by a Ukrainian prosecutor, Broidy has been acting as an agent of a sanctioned Kremlin-owned bank—in other words, the Kremlin. And the media reports Broidy has "significant access to Trump" and is lobbying him. On what? Why, Russian sanctions, of course.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
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21/ That's right, Broidy appears to be lobbying Trump to do just what Trump has done: slow or avoid the imposition of any new Russian sanctions, and militate publicly for an end to all sanctions on Russian entities. Thank god there's no evidence that Broidy is giving Trump money!
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
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22/ (Surely, if you're reading this, you know what's coming next.)
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
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23/ Broidy has been a major Trump fundraiser since 2016, and the money sure didn't stop flowing once (allegedly) Broidy began working for both the RNC and—apparently—Putin's VTB Bank. One week ago Broidy hosted a $35,000-a-person fundraiser (!) for Trump.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
24/ The Al-Jazeera investigation linked to in this thread implies that Mueller now could be investigating Broidy—who, again, apparently has shady ties to both the Kremlin, the RNC, Ukraine, Erik Prince, and the UAE—for FARA violations and more. And who could help him? Rick Gates.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
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25/ (I wish I could tell you this thread is about to get *less* complicated, but it's about to get *more* complicated. But also *absolutely stunning*.)
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
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26/ Trump (and Jared) are surrounded by a horde of fundraisers and advisors who are trying to lobby Trump not just about private military contractors in the Middle East but, more significantly, about *nuclear power* in the Middle East. Specifically, gifts of U.S. nuclear tech.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
27/ Rick Gates is part of that horde. And so is another man Mueller has in his pocket due to a plea: Michael Flynn. Trump pal Thomas Barrack is also in that horde. So is Bud McFarlane, who was a VIP at Trump's Mayflower Speech in April 2016. So is Broidy.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
28/ So now we have a story involving Gates, Flynn, Prince, Broidy, Barrack, McFarlane, Kushner, Nader, and Donald Trump. But guess what: it all comes back to Russia and the UAE, the two parties Prince secretly met with and lied about meeting with while under oath before Congress.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
29/ If you read the ProPublica story, you'll see the UAE can only get U.S. nuclear tech if we give it to Saudi Arabia first. Trump's pals are all either working to get that tech to Saudi Arabia or lobbying on behalf of the UAE—which, as to nuclear tech, amounts to the same thing.
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Seth Abramson 23 Mar 18
Replying to @SethAbramson
30/ What does this have to do with Putin and sanctions? That's a reasonable question to ask.The answer: Moscow wants the contracts to build all new nuclear power plants in the Middle East, and stands to make *hundreds of millions* doing so. Just one thing stops them: sanctions.
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