Peter Schweizer: Media Chases Trump-Putin Conspiracy Theories, Ignores Evidence of John Podesta’s Russia Ties

Podesta and Putin

On Thursday’s Breitbart News Daily, SiriusXM host Alex Marlow asked Breitbart News Senior Editor at Large Peter Schweizer about allegations that Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign chairman, John Podesta, may have violated federal law through his dealings with the Russians.

Schweizer said Podesta has “a very interesting relationship with Russia, going back to when Hillary Clinton was secretary of state.”

“When she was secretary of state, he was an adviser. He sat on her foreign policy advisory board. We know from the Podesta emails that he was talking to her all the time on everything from speeches to personnel decisions to policy positions,” Schweizer elaborated.

“In 2011, he joins the executive board of this small energy company in Massachusetts called Joule Energy,” Schweizer recalled. “And Joule Energy, about two months after he joins the executive board, gets a large infusion of cash. They get one billion rubles, which is about $35 to $45 million, invested from Russia. It comes from a very unusual entity, this entity called RUSNANO.”

“RUSNANO is this government-funded investment fund, called ‘Putin’s Child’ by the Russian Science Ministry, so it shows you how connected this fund is,” he explained. “They actually buy an equity stake in this John Podesta-linked company, which they can do. You can raise the question of why they’re doing it while he’s advising Hillary Clinton, but they can legally do that.”

“The problem for Podesta becomes when he joins the Obama White House as counselor to the president in 2013,” he continued. “In order to do that, he’s got to file those large, cumbersome, but I think essential financial disclosure forms where you list what boards are you on, that you are connected to or have been connected to in the last year, what entities. You’re also required to disclose your stock holdings.”

“In the case of Podesta, there are two omissions. One of them is the way the Joule was structured, it has three corporate boards. It has one based in Massachusetts, one based in the Netherlands, and then it has a holding company. John Podesta, according to corporate records, was on all three of those boards. He only listed two of them on his financial disclosure. He omitted probably the most important one, which was the holding company,” said Schweizer.

“Now, you could say okay, maybe it was just an omission. He listed two of the three; that’s not bad,” he granted. “The problem is that he failed to disclose what he did with the 75,000 shares of stock that he had in the company that were given to him as a board member. He gave them to his daughter through an LLC.”

“There’s a question of whether she actually owned them – and by that I mean the Podesta emails show that he had a long-ranging email conversation with Joule Energy executives and people connected with them, even though he ostensibly didn’t own stock anymore. But he failed to disclose that transaction. He failed to disclose the 75,000 shares he owned that he gave to his daughter. That is a direct, clear violation of what you are supposed to disclose on these federal forms,” Schweizer said.

Marlow noted there have been “zero pieces of hard evidence connecting the Trump campaign to the Russian government,” while “there is so much evidence, much of it uncovered by you, connecting the Clintons with the Russian government.”

“And yet, the media is obsessed with one and not the other,” he said.

Schweizer found the disparity of coverage interesting as well.

“I’m a big believer that you need to investigate and look into things, particularly if you’re talking about foreign governments or foreign entities trying to influence our politicians,” he declared. “What we know right now about the Russia story as it relates to Trump is the relationship, as it were, amounts to meetings that some Trump officials had with people from Russia. Those Trump officials never really made it into the Trump administration – with the exception of Michael Flynn, who left pretty quickly,” he pointed out.

“The thesis that everybody is operating on is the Russians helped Trump win and Trump is going to do all these favors for Russia. The problem is, when you look at the personnel decisions, who’s running Russia policy in the United States – whether that’s General Mattis at the Pentagon, whether that is McMaster, the national security adviser, whether that’s the CIA director, whether that’s the director of Russia policy on the National Security Council, who’s a very solid scholar from the Brookings Institution – none of these are remotely pro-Putin,” he said.

“All you have is sort of this concern that the Russians were hacking during the election, which I think is a legitimate concern and a theory that hasn’t been proved, that there was a connection between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. There’s just been no evidence of that,” he noted.

“My point is both should be looked into, but you actually have very substantial things that went on when Hillary Clinton was secretary of state, that, number one, included the transfer of money to the Clintons and to John Podesta and number two, very serious favors done by the Hillary Clinton State Department to the Russians, including technology transfer, et cetera,” he said.

“The kind of scenario that people envision happened with Trump happened in the Clinton State Department. And yet, there seems to be a lack of interest in pursuing and investigating precisely what those relationships were and how everything was carried out,” Schweizer observed.

Peter Schweizer is a senior editor at large for Breitbart News, president of the Government Accountability Institute, and author of the best-selling Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich.

Breitbart News Daily airs on SiriusXM Patriot 125 weekdays from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. Eastern.



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