About That Hillary Clinton Dirt

Mark Reinstein via ZUMA

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There’s something about the whole Trump Tower meeting that might be obvious to everyone by now, but I’m not sure it is. It might not even be especially important. For what it’s worth, though, here’s what I think happened:

  • On June 7 Donald Trump said he would shortly give a big speech (“probably Monday of next week”) about all the dirt he had on Hillary Clinton. Trump was almost certainly anticipating that the upcoming meeting at Trump Tower would provide him with bombshell information.
  • On June 9 the Trump Team met with Russian attorney Natalia Veselnitskaya at Trump Tower.
  • We now know what Veselnitskaya was pimping. A few days ago Vladimir Putin himself told us that “business associates” of Bill Browder “sent huge amount of money, $400 million as a contribution to the campaign of Hillary Clinton. Well, that’s the personal case. It might have been legal, the contribution itself, but the way the money was earned was illegal.”
  • That’s it. That was the dirt. This is so thin and so easily disproven that even Trump apparently couldn’t figure out a way to use it. That’s why he never gave his speech.
  • A year later, when the New York Times learned about the Trump Tower meeting, Trump conferred with Putin and then explained that they talked “about adoption.” This now makes sense: (a) the $400 million supposedly came from friends of Bill Browder, (b) Browder is the force behind the Magnitsky Act, which Putin loathes, and (c) after the act was passed, Putin retaliated by banning American adoption of Russian babies. So talking “about adoption” is just a hop and a skip away from talking about that $400 million that Hillary hoovered up in Browder cash.

Long story short, the Russian dirt was a nothingburger, which is why we never heard about it. Trump sure wanted it, but there was just nothing there.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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