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Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort resigns

Emails suggest Manafort lobbied on behalf of Ukrainian political figures in the U.S.


 
Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort talks to reporters on the floor of the Republican National Convention at Quicken Loans Arena, Sunday, July 17, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort talks to reporters on the floor of the Republican National Convention at Quicken Loans Arena, Sunday, July 17, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

WASHINGTON – Donald Trump’s campaign chairman Paul Manafort resigned on Friday in the wake of campaign shake-up and revelations about his work in Ukraine.

In a statement issued as he arrived in Louisiana to tour the flood-ravaged state, Trump said Manafort offered his resignation Friday morning. The billionaire called Manafort “a true professional.”

“I am very appreciative for his great work in helping to get us where we are today, and in particular his work guiding us through the delegate and convention process,” Trump said.

Manafort’s resignation comes a day after The Associated Press reported that confidential emails from Manafort’s firm contradicted his claims that he had never lobbied on behalf of Ukrainian political figures in the U.S.

Emails between Manafort’s deputy, Rick Gates, also a top Trump adviser, and the lobbying firm Mercury LLC showed that Manafort’s firm directly orchestrated a covert Washington lobbying operation on behalf of Ukraine’s then-ruling political party.

The effort included not just legislative outreach but also attempts to sway American public opinion and gather political intelligence on competing lobbying efforts in the U.S.

Manafort and Gates never registered as foreign agents for their work as required under federal law.

Also Friday, Ukrainian anti-corruption investigators released copies of handwritten ledgers detailing possible cash payments from Ukrainian political figures to Manafort totalling more than $12 million. Details of the payments described in the ledger were first reported by The New York Times. Manafort denies receiving those payments.

Earlier this week, Trump brought in a new campaign chief executive and campaign manager following a disastrous stretch in which the New Yorker committed a series of errors and fell behind Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton in both national and battleground state preference polls.

The new campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, had described Manafort and Gates as part of a new “core four” atop the Trump operation with her and CEO Stephen Bannon.


 

Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort resigns

  1. Oh so many issues here. First – Are consultants obligated to question their mandate on “moral/ethical” issues? If so who is the judge of what is a moral/ethical stance at the time? Especially when it is only the outcome that will determine if you were working for the winning side or the losing side of the issue? I mean lawyers representing criminals are not tarred and feathered for just doing their job. Second – when it has become clear that you were in fact working for the unpopular side, the best strategy is to own up to it right away as just doing your job. Third – In this instance, he broke Federal Law by not registering as a lobbyist for a foreign sovereign, as required by US law….so he was guilt of something…and he knowingly took the risk.From another media report I learned that he apparently relied on a legal opinion that he did not have to register as a lobbyist. Fourth – many movers and shakers routinely shop around for “opinions” to fall back on if the “shit hits the fan” …in order to mitigate their own personal responsibility.

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