Published: Wed, November 01, 2017
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

Podesta brothers fight back against Trump, Mueller and Fox News

Podesta brothers fight back against Trump, Mueller and Fox News

"The biggest story yesterday, the one that has the Dems in a dither, is Podesta running from his firm", tweeted the President of the United States on Tuesday morning. Manafort and Gates approached "Company A" and "Company B" in 2012 about lobbying on behalf of the Ukrainian government, according to the indictment that was unsealed Monday.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Donald Trump's Russian Federation connections followed Manafort, Trump's former campaign chairman.

Last week, three sources told NBC News that Tony Podesta and the Podesta Group had fallen under the purview of Mueller's investigation, due to their connections to Manafort's finances.

Now Tony Podesta has made a decision to leave his lobbying company the Podesta Group after Special Counsel Robert Mueller included the group in his investigation.

The indictment was the subject of intense interest on K Street, where the Justice Department's enforcement of the foreign lobbying requirements under the Foreign Agents Registration Act is widely seen as toothless.

The companies were paid more than $1.1 million each, according to lobbying filings, to try to rally support among American policymakers and opinion leaders for Mr. Yanukovych, and to quell concerns about his leadership and his government's jailing of a political rival.

Podesta was the target of an email hack during the campaign.

A spokeswoman for Mercury could not be reached for comment.

"[Tony] was very magnanimous and said, "This is an incredible group of people", a source said of Podesta's remarks".

"Podesta's lawyer wasn't trying to inform us of anything - but to threaten us, to shut down our reporting on his client", he said.

Manafort hired Podesta's firm as part of a public relations campaign he created for the European Centre for Modern Ukraine.

Molly Levinson, a spokeswoman for the Podesta Group, said the firm's work was "in support of Ukraine's admission into the [European Union]", and the Brussels nonprofit had certified that "it was neither funded by nor directed by a government or political party".

Mercury said in a statement that it "takes its obligations to follow all laws, rules and regulations very seriously" and "has and will continue to fully cooperate with the Office of the Special Counsel in its investigation".

As John rose up the ranks of Democratic politics, Tony was following a similar ascent in the world of political influence - emerging as one of the most powerful Democratic lobbyists (and biggest party donors) in Washington.

Tony Podesta stepped down from his firm after Mueller's indictment was released, alleging that he had been targeted unfairly by conservative media.

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