Question: Are The GOP In The US Congress Covering For The President Or Themselves/ NRA

Image result for PHOTOS NRA RALLY

During the week of July 16, 2018, “we the people” have been informed that Russia may very well have funneled monies to the NRA to curry favor; whereupon, the NRA used these monies to benefit republicans in the US Congress who were running for reelection in 2016.

See: The NRA Is Awfully Quiet About Maria Butina – Rolling Stone

See: Maria Butina, explained: accused Russian spy tried to sway US … – Vox

As per a 11/2017 New York Times report, “Below are the GOP top 10 US House career recipients of N.R.A. funding :

House
1. French Hill
Ark.
“Martha and I are praying for the families and victims of this senseless act of evil. […] We must continue to work together to stop this kind of terror.”
$1,089,477
FROM THE N.R.A.
2. Ken Buck
Co.
“I’m praying for all of those impacted by the evil events in Las Vegas last night. Our country must stand together in support of the families of the victims and the community.”
$800,544
FROM THE N.R.A.
3. David Young
Iowa
“My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families and friends of the horrific and evil tragedy in Las Vegas.”
$707,662
FROM THE N.R.A.
4. Mike Simpson
Idaho
“Though no words can heal our hurt, and no explanation will ever feel sufficient, I pray that all involved may find comfort as we process this devastating tragedy.”
$385,731
FROM THE N.R.A.
5. Greg Gianforte
Mont.
No statement released.
$344,630
FROM THE N.R.A.
6. Don Young
Alaska
“Anne and I are praying for all those involved or impacted by this heinous act of violence.”
$245,720
FROM THE N.R.A.
7. Lloyd Smucker
Pa.
“Horrific act of violence in Las Vegas. Cindy and I pray for the victims, their families, and the first responders.”
$221,736
FROM THE N.R.A.
8. Bruce Poliquin
Maine
“My thoughts are with all those effected in the horrifying attacks in Las Vegas. The nation is with you.”
$201,398
FROM THE N.R.A.
9. Pete Sessions
Tex.
“My deepest sympathies are with all who were harmed by this horrific tragedy.”
$158,111
FROM THE N.R.A.
10. Barbara Comstock
Va.
“I am heartbroken by the mass murder that took place last night in Las Vegas and I am praying for the victims, families, and first responders.”
$137,232
FROM THE N.R.A.

“All of these representatives are Republican. The highest ranked Democrat in the House is Sanford Bishop, who ranks 41st in career donations from the N.R.A. Among the top 100 House recipients, 95 are Republican.

As per a 2/15/2018 Sacramento Bee report:

Ken Calvert, R-Corona: $147,166

Ed Royce, R-Fullerton: $109,120

Tom McClintock, R-Elk Grove, $95,156

Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield: $86,850

Jeff Denham, R-Turlock, $62,900

Darrell Issa, R-Vista, $54,270

David Valadao, R-Hanford, $49,200

Dana Rohrabacher, R-Costa Mesa, $42,150

Duncan Hunter, R-San Diego, $41,087

Devin Nunes, R-Tulare, $37,450

As per a 2/21/18 Politico report:

$5,900,000 given to GOP in 2016 election cycle

$106,000 given to Democrats in 2016 election cycle NRA gave $171,977.00 to House Speaker Paul Ryan

 

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Here is the rest of the story…

On July 20, 2018, Michelle Goldberg of the New York Times penned the following op-ed piece, Are Republicans Covering for Trump, or for Themselves?” (“If the N.R.A. was compromised by Russia, the whole party’s in trouble.”)

Excerpts:

“Of all the interlocking mysteries of the Trump-Russia scandal, one that I’ve found particularly perplexing is the utter servility of congressional Republicans before a president many of them hate and believe to be compromised by a foreign power.”

“Yes, I know they’re thrilled about tax cuts and judges. Given how Russia has become a patron of the right globally over the last decade, some Republicans might welcome its intervention into our politics, believing that the Democrats are greater enemies of the Republic. And some are just cowards, afraid of mean tweets or base blowback.”

Image result for cartoons paul ryan devin nunes

“But that doesn’t explain why, for example, Speaker Paul Ryan, a Russia hawk who is retiring in January, allowed his party to torpedo the House Intelligence Committee investigation into Russian interference in the election. Ryan, after all, knows full well who and what Donald Trump is. In a secretly recorded June 2016 conversation about Ukraine, obtained by The Washington Post, the House majority leader, Kevin McCarthy, said, “There’s two people I think Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump.” Far from disagreeing, Ryan said, “What’s said in the family stays in the family.” If he were patriotic — or even if he just wanted to set himself up for a comeback should Trump implode — he would have stood up for the rule of law in the Russia inquiry. It’s hard to see what he got in return for choosing not to.”

“This week, however, a new possibility came into focus. Perhaps, rather than covering for Trump, some Republicans are covering for themselves.”

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“Last Friday, Robert Mueller, the special counsel, indicted 12 members of Russian military intelligence for their interference in the 2016 election. The indictment claims that in August 2016, Guccifer 2.0, a fictitious online persona adopted by the Russian hackers, “received a request for stolen documents from a candidate for the U.S. Congress.” The Russian conspirators obliged, sending “the candidate stolen documents related to the candidate’s opponent.” Congress has, so far, done nothing discernible to find out who this candidate might be.”

“Then, on Monday, we learned of the arrest of Maria Butina, who is accused of being a Russian agent who infiltrated the National Rifle Association, the most important outside organization in the Republican firmament. Legal filings in the case outline a plan to use the N.R.A. to push the Republican Party in a more pro-Russian direction.”

“Butina, 29, appears to have worked for Alexander Torshin, a Russian politician linked to organized crime who is the target of U.S. sanctions. She developed a romantic relationship with Paul Erickson, a conservative operative close to the N.R.A. (Court filings cite evidence it was insincere on her part.) Erickson, in turn, wrote to a Trump adviser in May 2016 about using the N.R.A. to set up a back channel to the Kremlin.”

“The young Russian woman clearly understood the political significance of the N.R.A. In one email, court papers say, she described the central “place and influence” of the N.R.A. in the Republican Party. Through her pro-gun activism, she became a fixture of the conservative movement and was photographed with influential Republican politicians. A Justice Department filing quotes Torshin as comparing her to another young, famous Russian agent: “You have upstaged Anna Chapman. She poses with toy pistols, while you are being published with real ones.”

Image result for cartoons NRA

“If the N.R.A. as an organization turns out to be compromised, it would shake conservative politics to its foundation. And this is no longer a far-fetched possibility. “I serve on both the Intelligence Committee and the Finance Committee,” Senator Ron Wyden, Democrat of Oregon, told me. “So I have a chance to really look at this through the periscope of both committees. And what I have wondered about for some time is this whole issue of whether the N.R.A. is getting subverted as a Russian asset.”

This is not a question that Republicans are eager to answer. Before Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee abruptly closed their investigation into Russian election interference, committee Democrats wanted to interview both Butina and Erickson. Their Republican colleagues refused. “If there were efforts towards a back channel towards the N.R.A., they didn’t want to know,” Representative Adam Schiff, a California Democrat who is the ranking member on the committee, told me. “It was too hot to handle.”

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“It is not surprising that Republicans would want to protect the N.R.A. According to an audit obtained by the Center for Responsive Politics, the N.R.A.’s overall spending increased by more than $100 million in 2016. “The explosion in spending came as the N.R.A. poured unprecedented amounts of money into efforts to deliver Donald Trump the White House and help Republicans hold both houses of Congress,” the center wrote.”

“McClatchy has reported that the F.B.I. is investigating whether Torshin illegally funneled money to the N.R.A. to help Trump. Wyden has also been trying to trace foreign money flowing into the N.R.A., but has found little cooperation from the organization, his Republican colleagues or the Treasury Department.”

Image result for cartoons NRA

“The fact is, the N.R.A. has flipped their position more times than a kid does on a summer diving board,” Wyden said of the organization’s conflicting responses to his inquiries. At this point, the N.R.A. has acknowledged receiving just over $2,500 from Russians or people living in Russia, mostly for dues payments and magazine subscriptions. But that doesn’t tell us anything about money that might have been routed through shell companies, like, for example, Bridges, the limited liability corporation that Butina and Erickson set up in South Dakota in February 2016.”

“On Monday, a few hours after news broke of Butina’s arrest, the Treasury Department announced a new rule sparing some tax-exempt groups, including the N.R.A., from having to report their large donors to the I.R.S. Wyden called the move “truly grotesque,” saying it would “make it easier for Russian dark money” to flow into American politics. You might ask who benefits. The answer is: not just Trump.”

Link to article: Opinion | Are Republicans Covering for Trump, or for Themselves

16 comments

    • Dear Suzanne,

      Everyone with half a non-racist brain has been puzzled as to the US congressional GOP members lack of courage where they are silent or excusing away President Trump’s behaviors that they would hang a democrat for doing. But it isn’t just the silence that has been deafening, it is their proactive attacks on the DOJ and the FBI and its Trump-Russia probe which has troubled me, a lot.

      The NRA connection is another piece of the puzzle. Thanks a million times over for all of your support and for this reblog.

      Hugs, Gronda

      Like

    • We can deport her if she did anything illegal, sadly working with the NRA are not sufficient grounds for prosecution. She did break the law by not filling with the AG as a foreign agent…. if she indeed works for the Russian gov’t as a spy, which she vehemently denies. I don’t think it too hard to prove, as there’s plenty evidence of her actions.

      Like

    • Dear Holly and 1EarthUnited,

      We’ll find out soon enough. She was free to share her views about the advantages of the NRA having an association with Russia, but she should have followed US law by registering as a foreign agent.

      The real problem arises because of US election laws where she and others were not permitted to funnel monies to the NRA which was then passed on to GOP candidates running for election in 2016.

      She is currently being subjected to the US judicial system.

      Hugs, Gronda

      Like

  1. “Given how Russia has become a patron of the right globally over the last decade, some Republicans might welcome its intervention into our politics, believing that the Democrats are greater enemies of the Republic.”

    According to Lada Ray’s research, this statement is truer than most Americans can ever believe. Many conservatives view Russians as the lessor of two evils when compared to “Demonrats”. They say that Putin can be reasoned with, while Democrats are ideologues who just want to take over the world!

    Crazy i know, but that seems to be a reoccurring theme on forums and social media. There doesn’t seem to be a common ground where both sides of the political spectrum could sit down and discuss grievances, possibly working out solutions. Instead Repubs would rather work surreptitiously with the Russians, I know… Reagan must be turning in his grave! 😮

    Like

    • Dear 1EarthUnited,

      Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on one’s perspective, these conservatives are in the minority. It seem that Lady Rada observes and evaluates what is occurring in the USA from the prism of the Russian point of view.

      Most Americans don’t share her thinking. Those right wingers are free to move to Russia if Russia wishes to welcome them. Most of us want to live in the culture we have become accustomed to for over a couple of hundred years.

      Just as Russians are comfortable in their culture, they need to respect that the Americans feel likewise.

      Hugs, Gronda

      Like

      • Personally i prefer to live in a world where humanity comes together as one. Having different cultures is fine, but in the immortal words of Rodney King – can’t we all just get along? The majority of ppls of the world just want to live in peace and come together, that’s where i agree with Lada Ray.

        Perhaps a part of Trump, in his own warped way wishes to do the same and unite with Russia for peace, love and harmony. Sadly his motivation is not pure, I’m sure he’s also in it for the money and personal gain, same with Putin – for power and money. However if peace is the result between our 2 superpower nations, I can live with that. 🙂

        Like

        • Dear 1EarthUnited,

          Russia is a great country. Sharing in each others cultures through travel etc, is to be encouraged.

          What I don’ want is someone coming into my house, telling me how I should live my life and that I have to accept their household rules which differs greatly from mine. That is going way too far.

          I feel this way about Russia attacking our US elections infrastructure. I don’t let someone attack me in my own home and then have that person tell me that I have to play nice.

          Russia cannot come into my country and mess with my vote without me becoming very indignant. That’s were I’m at. My hero, Maggie Smith has this quip which works for both the subjects of politics and religion. My Dear, Religion/ One’s politics is like a penis. It’s a perfectly fine thing to have and take pride in, but when one takes it out and waves it in my face, we have a problem.

          Hugs, Gronda

          Liked by 1 person

        • 1EarthUnited,
          Re:

          “Perhaps a part of Trump, in his own warped way wishes to do the same and unite with Russia for peace, love and harmony. “

          And, I wish that lions would lay down with lambs, but a hungry lion will only lay down with a lamb to eat it, starting with its stomach, after it has choked it to death or tore its throat out.. Trump has demonstrated his character enough times and it’s completely opposite of being Kumbaya. He’s out for fame and money.

          The best way to keep peace with enemies is to not let them get involved in your business and certainly, you never invite a known thief into your home like Trump is doing.

          Liked by 2 people

        • Thanks Gronda for the Maggie Smith quote, one of my all time favs, lol! Yes I understand your concerns about the invasion of our political system. You have a right to pissed, no sovereign nation wants to be manipulated and controlled by another aggressor. Fate it seems is not without a sense irony…. poetic justice (CIA interference with foreign elections around the world) 😉

          Yet I’m a bit annoyed at our disingenuous mainstream media whipping the American public into a frenzy over silly social media manipulation. I’m not convinced that the majority of intelligent citizens would base their voting decision solely on whimsical ads shown from FB, Twitter, or Google. Blaming Russia for social media sounds rally lame and juvenile.

          Now Russian agents hacking into the DNC server is another story. According to Lada Ray, that is a real possibility worthy of investigating! I believe that’s where the FBI and SC Mueller should devote their resources to. If they can prove it, then that would be a real game-changer. We can finally shut Trump up about his mentor Putin, also impeachment if he was complicit/ colluded with the Russians to fix the election!

          At the very least, we all know Trump lied about his involvement with Stormy Daniels, whether he used campaign funds to pay her off is the point of contention. Why is there no Congressional hearing on this?! I remember Bill Clinton getting grilled for much less, a quickie BJ from an intern. Repubs wanted to impeach him for lying… nobody lies more than Trump!

          Like

    • Dear Roger,

      You are a breath of fresh air from across the pond. God works in mysterious ways.

      The NRA is in a heap of trouble with the FBI for playing footsies with the Russians during election season.. Maybe soon we can pass some sensible gun laws to prevent some deaths.

      I do love Maggie Smith.

      Hugs, Gronda

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you Gronda for your kind words.
        Maggie Smith is a UK National Treasure….amongst many other of her films suggested ‘Gosford Park’, although an brilliant ensemble piece she is on cracking form!
        The FBI…that group of conniving socialists set on bringing down the USA…..Oh how our younger selves would simply not believe it would come to this!

        Liked by 1 person

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