Top Obama administration officials frequently met with Russian agents, and the U.S. Senate Finance Committee wants to know why.
The U.S. Senate Finance Committee has begun a probe into the ‘scandal free’ Obama administration. The incidents in question involve a series of meetings between high ranking Obama officials and Russian agents.
Chairman Charles Grassley and ranking Democrat Ron Wyden announced that previously unreported meeting between Russian Central Bank deputy governor Alexander Torshin, Maria Butina, and Stanley Fischer, then Federal Reserve vice chairman, along with Nathan Sheets, then Treasury undersecretary for international affairs would be investigated.
The meetings were set up by the Center for the National Interest, a Washington foreign policy think tank, designed to ‘improve’ relations between America and Russia.
In two separate meetings, documented in a Center for the National Interest report, the players supposedly discussed how to bring together “leading figures from the financial institutions of the United States and Russia.”
Butina, a former graduate student, pleaded guilty to conspiring to act as a foreign agent by working for an organized Russian effort to influence U.S. politics in December of last year.
“Torshin was sanctioned last April by the Treasury Department, and he is referenced in court records as an unindicted co-conspirator who worked with Butina to infiltrate the National Rifle Association (NRA) and make inroads in conservative political circles to help benefit Russia.”
Interestingly, Butina’s parents claimed that ‘somebody snitched’ on her, which has led others to speculate whether democrats were working with her all along.
The Senate panel earlier this week sent letters to Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and the Center for the National Interest’s Russian-born CEO, Dimitri Simes, asking for more information.
“A critical issue facing the Committee and the country is the extent to which the Russian government engaged in efforts designed to undermine our political system and governmental policy through obfuscation and manipulation,” Grassley and Wyden wrote.
“Paul Saunders, the Center for the National Interest’s executive director, previously told Reuters it was unaware of any inappropriate conduct or connections to Russian intelligence services involving Butina and Torshin.”
In their letters, Grassley and Wyden requested the think tank’s records related to meetings it organized with these Obama officials.
“It is concerning that Ms. Butina and Mr. Torshin were able to gain access to high-level administration officials responsible for U.S. economic and monetary policy to reportedly discuss U.S. Russian economic relations,” the lawmakers wrote.
The real Russian collusion, many people argue, occurred between democrats, including Obama and Hillary, and Donald Trump was accused of what they were doing in order to shield their own treasonous activities.
With the Senate firmly conservative, it will be interesting to see what their investigation uncovers.