It's been a long while since I've done an in-earnest "TrumpWorld Grab-Bag"--and it's probably overdue. You know, what with the actual weird stuff Trump tries to do, badly, like manage a nuclear crisis with North Korea, pass any kind of legislation at all, and try to act like a sensible, emotion-having human being when something like Hurricane Harvey strikes millions of people, it's sometimes easy to be distracted enough to not recall that there is abundant evidence of fuckery about many, many, Russian contacts prior to his sort of shocking 2016 electoral win.
Take the weird "WV" memo Rick Dearborn got trying to set up a meet between Trump and Putin. By email. ("But TrumpWorld emails" should totally become a thing.) Take, also, the email correspondence between Trump lawyer Michael Cohen and Russian satellite/money launderer Felix Sater.
The Felix Sater connection seems damn interesting. Here's the thing--what I guess a "collusion" rap might look like is "quid pro quo". Well, we had the Trump Jr, Jared Kushner, Paul Manafort thing that was set up with any number of folks, where there seemed to be a deal regarding loosening sanctions in exchange for oppo on Hillary Clinton if ever Trump became president--meh. We're supposed to believe the intelligence in that meeting never went anywhere--and the same thing with Sater and such a juicy quote as:
“Our boy can become president of the USA and we can engineer it,” Mr. Sater wrote in an email. “I will get all of Putins team to buy in on this, I will manage this process.”
Seems so ambitious and so exactly like what anyone would be looking for in re: smoking Trump/Russia gun, right?
But who even knows what constitutes adequately culpable these days, right? We could rationally note that there's a potential "quid pro quo" regarding a potential Moscow Tower and allowing Russia to take over Ukraine without a hassle. It's almost like you can find multiple business reasons why Trump was running for president, and Russian interests might have wanted to help him out. There's a reason Manafort is particularly on the hook. And what about Rep. Dana Rohrabacher's attempt to 'splain Julian Assange to the White House? This is pretty obviously weird, right?
I definitely think this grab-bag is shaping up to have a definite financial aspect. The combined powers of Special Counsel Robert Mueller and NY AG Eric Schneiderman are most likely looking at money laundering specifically, with an emphasis on making cases on people Trump can't pardon. Because they understood the Arpaio message, and know better than Trump how this game is played.