As the investigation into Russia grows, the National Rifle Association (NRA) is coming under scrutiny for taking money from the Kremlin to influence the election towards Trump. According to Ted Lieu, of California, all we need to do is “follow the money” and we will find proof that the NRA received millions of dollars illegally from Putin to influence the election.
On Friday, Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.), who sits on the House Judiciary Committee, told me on SiriusXM Progress that the word on Capitol Hill is that the story of a Russia-NRA-Trump link is going to grow. The FBI is investigating whether Russian banker and NRA member Alexander Torshin channeled funds through the group to the presidential campaign of Donald Trump, in breach of U.S. election laws.
In 2011, then-NRA president David Keene began a friendship with a Russian Senator named Alexander Torshin, a close Putin ally who is now the Deputy Director of the Russian Central Bank.
In 2015, around the time the Russians began to ramp up their campaign to influence the 2016 election, and the NRA began its own $50 million campaign toward the election, the NRA sent a delegation to Moscow to meet with Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, a sanctioned Russian official and top Putin aide who runs Russia’s defense industry. Butina was part of the same meeting.
Nearly three weeks after the Washington Post published a blockbuster report, which documented alarming – and growing – ties between leaders of the National Rifle Association and Russia, the NRA is still refusing to comment or answer basic questions raised by the Post’s reporting.
NRA Board Member Ted Nugent Posts that Parkland Students Are Fake Actors
As reported by Media Matters, the “Motor City Madman” posted an article on his Facebook page pushing a right-wing conspiracy theory alleging survivors of Florida’s Parkland school massacre were “coached” actors.
The article, from noted fake news purveyor Natural News, claimed the students “were coached to repeat scripted lines, just like actors reading lines for a movie production” in order “to push a gun control narrative rooted in emotional reaction rather than constructive solutions.” Nugent later “liked” a comment left below the post article claiming that one of the students was “a paid crisis actor” who “has been at multiple shootings as a ‘survivor.'”
As Media Matters points out, much of the article was lifted from another site, The Gateway Pundit — which even InfoWars has accused of being “fake news.”
The Nuge, a National Rifle Association board member, has a long history of promoting right-wing conspiracy theories in the aftermath of gun violence.
“I’m not a crisis actor,” Hogg told CNN’s Anderson Cooper on Tuesday. “I’m someone who had to witness this and live through this and I continue to be having to do that.”
Nugent’s actions have been supported by some, but others are condeming the rocker. A statement released by Michigan Democratic Party Chair Brandon Dillon called Nugent “vile and disgusting” for “pushing the disgusting and harmful conspiracy theory.”
Another Trump Official Fails Security Clearance and Fired
Senior White House official George David Banks has “resigned” after being told that his security clearance had been denied. It makes him the third White House official to resign in just one week.
Banks, who served as Special Assistant to the President for International Energy and Environment for nearly a year, told Politico on Wednesday that his application for a permanent security clearance had been denied.
According to Banks, his security clearance had been denied because he admitted to smoking marijuana in 2013, which is illegal under federal law — however, the current policy is that they can get clearance unless they lied about it.
The allegations surrounding Porter have prompted questions about the handling of permanent security clearances as Porter, along with some other officials at the White House, were using interim clearances. The White House has also been under fire for its handling of the allegations against Porter.
BREAKING: Trump Homeland Security Says Russia Hacked Elections
The Homeland Security official in charge of protecting the elections from interference and hacking has announced that Russia indeed penetrated the voter registration roles of voters and stole them, to use to target voters in fake news stories.
In an exclusive interview with NBC News, Jeanette Manfra, the head of cybersecurity at the Department of Homeland Security, said she couldn’t talk about classified information publicly, but in 2016, “We saw a targeting of 21 states and an exceptionally small number of them were actually successfully penetrated.”
The Department of Homeland Security said earlier this year that it had evidence of Russian activity in 21 states, but it failed to inform individual states whether they were among those targeted. Instead, DHS authorities say they told those who had “ownership” of the systems – which in some cases were private vendors or local election offices.
US intelligence agencies say Russian spies hacked into a wide range of institutions and agencies during the US election campaign. They have accused two Kremlin spy agencies – the GRU and the FSB – of hacking Democratic party emails and giving them to the website WikiLeaks.
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