A mysterious webpage went up online soliciting donations for Paul Manafort’s legal defense fund, and MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow is highly suspicious.
The former campaign chairman for President Donald Trump is facing multiple indictments and steep legal bills, and self-described “long-time” friends set up an irrevocable trust to raise money.
“It seems like it could potentially be a prank or a stunt, or it’s at least a little strange in part because this website that they launched (Wednesday), this Paul Manafort defense fund, kind of feels like it was cheaply translated from some other language,” Maddow said.
She pointed to some awkward turns of phrase and odd spellings of common words, and the MSNBC host reminded viewers that Manafort had worked for shady foreign clients for decades.
“Some of this is probably just inevitably unavoidably awkward,” Maddow said. “There is a section of this website that tries to define Paul Manafort’s lifetime of service to the United States.”
“That may or may not be an effective plea to donors,” she added, “but it doesn’t quite reflect the spirit of what Paul Manafort is on trial for, which is, among other things, lots of tax evasion and money laundering relating to his time of pro-Russia Party of Regions in Ukraine and its successor, the hardline anti-American, anti-western Opposition Bloc is what Manafort’s clients in Ukraine had to rename themselves after their previous leader fled to Russia for Putin’s protection to avoid angry mobs in his own streets. This is not somebody for whom it is easy to concoct a tale of all-American patriotic service.”
The trust seems designed for maximum anonymity, Maddow said, and ripe for abuse.
“The name they want you to make the payment to is completely generic, Legal Defense Fund Irrevocable Trust,” she said. “That turns up in your check register, is everyone going to know what that is? It certainly doesn’t mention the name Paul Manafort.”
Former national security adviser Mike Flynn, who pleaded guilty in the special counsel probe, has promised not to accept foreign donations for his legal defense — but Maddow said the indicted campaign chairman had made no such assurances.
“I don’t know who set up the do-not-say Paul Manafort legal defense fund irrevocable trust and started soliciting donations for it (Wednesday) with this ‘MySpace’ website, but it really does appear to be a pretty slapdash effort,” Maddow said. “A lot of the idiom in this thing is super weird, and there is no reason to think we will ever have any disclosure as to who set up this little anonymous legal defense fund and who fills it up with money for Paul Manafort’s use.”
“They do take credit cards,” she added. “They take checks, they take money orders. Presumably, you can just drop off some jewelry you want to pawn.”
Conservative newspaper hilariously trolls Trump about his failure to build any new border wall
The conservative Washington Examiner trolled President Donald Trump for his failure to construct any new border barricade during his 30 months in office.
On Monday, Trump lashed out at the media on Twitter for not giving him positive coverage for his wall, which he erroneously claimed would be paid for by Mexico.
The Examiner replied to Trump on Twitter, posting an article headlined, "Trump has not built a single mile of new border fence after 30 months in office."
Here’s how a new study implies the Supreme Court has killed 16,000 people since 2012
A new paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research looked into the effects of the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion to people below 138 percent of the poverty line, which has seen nearly 15 million people enrolled in participating states. The results were encouraging: the mortality rate for near-elderly adults has dropped over 9 percent in the four years for which data is available.
But while this is cause for celebration, The Atlantic staff writer Annie Lowrey offered a darker take on the implications of these numbers:
Trump lashes out at media for not pretending he has built a wall on the southern border
President Donald Trump lashed out at the media on Monday, complaining about a lack of coverage of the wall he claims he's building.
"When we rip down and totally replace a badly broken and dilapidated barrier on the southern border, something which cannot do the job, the fake news media gives us zero credit for building a new wall," Trump said.
"We have replaced many miles of old barrier with powerful new walls," Trump argued.
He did not mention the fact he had promised that Mexico would pay for the wall. Mexico is not footing the bill for Trump's project.