GOP Operators Who Funneled Russian Money to Trump Denied Collateral

A Republican convicted of funneling illegal Russian money into Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign has been denied bail while he appeals his sentence.

Jesse Benton will not get bail:

ONLY IN: DC Circuit refuses to provide bail pending appeal to Jesse Benton, sentenced to 18 months in prison for using $$$ from Russian donors to arrange meetings with Trump during the 2016 campaign. Order: https://t.co/VoOqHlcH1s Earlier: https://t.co/TaCkU0NZKc

— Josh Gerstein (@joshgerstein) July 17, 2023

Benton was indicted in 2021 and eventually convicted of taking $100,000 from a Russian citizen and funneling $25,000 to the Trump campaign. The Russian national wanted to make a donation to Trump so he could have a face-to-face meeting, and there is no indication that the Trump campaign was involved in the scheme.

The plot does show that Russia sniffed out Trump’s campaign in 2o16, and how deeply the Republican Party has been overrun by foreign/Russian money.

Holes in campaign finance laws in the United States create enormous potential problems for both sides, but Russia is clearly interested in Trump, and there is no sign yet that Trump’s interest in getting help from Russia in 2024 has diminished at all.

There’s a good reason why after nearly eight years, Trump and his MAGA allies in Congress have continued to try to discredit the Russia investigation.

For all the talk of Trump’s authoritarian dreams and criminality, one key element of Trump that hasn’t changed is that he seems conflicted and ready to be sold to a foreign government.

Russia is the shadow forever following Trump, and that will continue to be as long as he is in politics.

Jason is the managing editor. He is also the White House Press Pool and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor of Political Science degree. His postgraduate work focuses on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.

Professional Awards and Memberships

Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association

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