Feds Investigate Trump Inauguration Donations: Much Ado About Nothing?

Feds Investigate Trump Inauguration Donations: Much Ado About Nothing?

Feds Investigate Trump Inauguration Donations: Much Ado About Nothing?

No sooner had former Trump attorney Michael Cohen been sentenced than news of more investigations into Trump started trickling out. Yesterday the MAJOR breathless news broke that the feds are investigating the donations and spending surrounding the Trump Inauguration. The Wall Street Journal is on the case y’all!

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan are investigating whether President Trump’s 2017 inaugural committee misspent some of the record $107 million it raised from donations, people familiar with the matter said.

The criminal probe by the Manhattan U.S. attorney’s office, which is in its early stages, also is examining whether some of the committee’s top donors gave money in exchange for access to the incoming Trump administration, policy concessions or to influence official administration positions, some of the people said.

The above is the first two paragraphs of the WSJ story. And that’s almost all you need. You see, I think there is much ado about nothing here. Keep reading and you’ll see why.

First of all, this investigation was launched because of Michael Cohen recorded a conversation.

Federal Bureau of Investigation agents obtained a recorded conversation between Mr. Cohen and Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, a former adviser to Melania Trump, who worked on the inaugural events. In the recording, Ms. Wolkoff expressed concern about how the inaugural committee was spending money, according to a person familiar with the Cohen investigation.

And this means that money was misspent how? Perhaps the feds and the ‘reporters’ should take a step back and realize that when planning a major event … budget is ALWAYS a concern. An event on this scale? For damned sure budget is a concern! Not only that, but there were credible reports that several vendors who were actually willing to work with the Trump Inaugural demanded and received higher fees than normally charged because … TRUMP!

But sure, let’s have that be a smoking gun shall we? And, of course, the media is all over this like a fat kid on cake.

However, there are a lot of holes in the WSJ story. 

  1. The inauguration committee hasn’t been contacted by prosecutors or asked for records
  2. As with previous inaugurals the top five donors were publicized
  3. Committee chair, Thomas Barrack Jr has not been contacted by investigators
  4. No one seems to know exactly WHICH expenses are being targeted in the investigation

That is the point. Inaugurations are ALL about access and ALL about donors being rewarded for helping get the candidate get elected. Which means mega and even not so mega donors strive for access to lobbyists, politicians, staffers, and others during Inauguration week.

I find it so sad that WSJ reporters Rebecca Davis O’Brien, Aurna Viswanatha, and Rebecca Ballhaus didn’t figure that out while researching this story. Oh wait, did they even research past inaugurations? Only enough to know that this was the most expensive one ever. Other than that…zilch.

Oh wait! Foreign money. Russia!! Yep, supposedly there was foreign money funneled into the inauguration.

The Journal notes that Mueller has also probed “whether any foreign money flowed to the inaugural fund, which is prohibited from accepting foreign funds,” and referred a Washington consultant to the Washington U.S. attorney’s office after he admitted to using a U.S. citizen as a “straw purchaser” on behalf of a Ukraine oligarch so he could attend the inauguration.

Wait what? A consultant went the straw purchase route through a gullible U.S. citizen so he could attend the inauguration?? Holy moly! Smoking gun!! IMPEACH!

Keep in mind that the Trump Inauguration also included nasty ass protestors who threw crap at inauguration attendees, did their best to destroy property and vehicles, and overall make extreme fools of themselves.

But sure! Let’s look at the inauguration donations and scream about how donating for access is SUDDENLY bad because TRUMP!

All those donors and movie stars who ponied up the big bucks for the Obama inaugurations didn’t raise a red flag?

So yes, is that much ado about nothing? Given what the WSJ has put out, it seems likely. But that sure won’t stop the media and all those who hate Trump with a passion from running this particular GOTCHA story into the ditch several times over.

Feature Photo Credit: U.S. Army/Army Sgt. Ashley Marble [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons – Cropped and Adjusted

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  • GWB says:

    whether some of the committee’s top donors gave money in exchange for access to the incoming Trump administration
    So, do these people not understand the word “politics”? How the hell do they think ambassadorships are awarded?

    like a fat kid on cake
    Oooooh! You triggered me!

    Keep in mind that the Trump Inauguration also included nasty ass protestors who…
    did NOT go to prison for their criminal acts.

    I’d like to see the inauguration scaled back – as it is, it reeks of a coronation. But, no matter how big it is, nor how much “big money” is supposedly kept out of our campaigns, money is always necessary to run a political campaign on the national level, and it will always be an attempt to buy influence. (And you can always set up a charity “foundation” of some sort to take bribes, too, if you really need to.) Because… humans.
    It’s why the Founders set up the national gov’t with as little power as possible. Because if there’s no power to do things, then there’s no incentive for corruption.

  • ScienceABC123 says:

    If it’s legal for a Democrat to do it (and very openly at that) then it can’t be illegal for a Republican to do. The laws must be applied equally to everyone. The DoJ can’t pick and choose to whom the laws applies and to whom they do not!

    • GWB says:

      Pfft! Equality under the law? What are you, some sort of throwback?
      Equality of outcome is what’s important, and we can only have that by letting all righthinkers go and destroying the wrongthinkers.

  • Nicki says:

    I’m not going to lay the blame on the WSJ here. They are reporting on a development – nothing more, nothing less. The BLUF is that there’s another federal investigation – this time into the inauguration. It’s reporting facts, not promoting impeachment. In fact, impeachment is not mentioned in the story at all.

    Fact: an investigation is going on.

    Fact: the probe is in its early stages.

    Fact: the investigation partially arose out of Cohen’s documents.

    Fact: high-dollar donors made contributions.

    I’m sure the reporters know that donors make contributions. What they’re reporting on is a new investigation and providing details. There’s nothing really to investigate yet. The story is about the new probe.

    And frankly, I give the reporters some credit for not writing a bunch of conjecture. They wrote what they know and what they don’t know.

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