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Trump Associate Boasted That Moscow Deal Would Get Him Elected

Image: Trump Associate Boasted That Moscow Deal Would Get Him Elected
(Pablo Martinez/AP)

By    |   Monday, 28 August 2017 02:54 PM

A business associate of President Donald Trump promised during the early stages of the election campaign to engineer a real estate deal with the help of Russian President Vladimir Putin that would help Trump win the presidency, The New York Times reported on Monday.

The business associate, Felix Sater, wrote a series of emails to Trump's lawyer, Michael Cohen, including one on Nov. 3, 2015 that said, "Our boy can become president of the USA and we can engineer it. I will get all of Putin's team to buy in on this, I will manage this process."

At the time, Sater, a Russian immigrant, was a broker for the Trump organization, meaning he was paid to deliver real estate deals.

The Times obtained some of the emails that the Trump organization turned over on Monday to the House Intelligence Committee, which is probing Russian meddling in the presidential election and whether anyone in Trump's campaign was involved.

The Trump Organization turned over the emails after The Washington Post on Sunday reported on the existence of the correspondence between Sater and Cohen as part of the failed attempt to build a Trump Tower in Moscow.

The organization issued a statement on Monday saying: "To be clear, the Trump Organization has never had any real estate holdings or interests in Russia."

Cohen said in a statement that Sater "has sometimes used colorful language and has been prone to 'salesmanship.' I ultimately determined that the proposal was not feasible and never agreed to make a trip to Russia."

Although there is no evidence in the emails that Sater delivered on his promises, the correspondence does appear to demonstrate that, from the earliest months of Trump's election campaign, some of his associates concluded that close ties with Moscow would give Trump a political advantage.

Sater presented himself as so influential in Russia that he could get Putin involved in a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the project in Moscow "and we will get Donald elected," as he wrote in another email.

Sater also claimed that he helped arrange a 2006 trip that Trump's daughter Ivanka took to Moscow, saying "I arranged for Ivanka to sit in Putin's private chair at his desk and office in the Kremlin."

Ivanka Trump said she was not involved in the talks about the Moscow deal. She did say that she took a trip to Russia in 2006, during which she took "a brief tour of Red Square and the Kremlin, but I have never met President Vladimir Putin."

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A business associate of President Donald Trump promised during the early stages of the election campaign to engineer a real estate deal with the help of Russian President Vladimir Putin that would help Trump win the presidency, The New York Times reported on Monday.
donald trump, associate, boasted, moscow deal, elected, president
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Monday, 28 August 2017 02:54 PM
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