Mueller follows the money trail

Over the past year, this tactic has become pervasive: defending [President] Trump by arguing that it’s actually the president who is the victim of a conspiracy and whipping up whatever evidence is at hand to bolster that claim.

.. It is not just buffoonish efforts, such as when Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) made-up an “unmasking” scandal or teased a release of his own memo. No, actual grown-ups are at it now, too. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), a former business executive, sees no problem fanning the flames

.. “Even though Trump has attempted to distance himself from Sater, his former business partner will likely continue to emerge in the context of compromising past deals and tarnish Trump’s reputation.”

.. There is also an additional financial connection between Donald Trump and the Kazakh officials. The New Yorker reported that in March 2012, a month after Ablyazov fled from the U.K. to avoid a 22-month prison sentence, Trump traveled to Georgia to announce a licensing deal for a development in the Black Sea town of Batumi. The Silk Road Group, a Kazakh real estate developer financed by BTA, paid Trump $1 million dollars to attend a press tour promoting the partnership.

.. the FBI — which remember arguably made the difference in Trump’s favor with release of a letter concerning Hillary Clinton’s emails 11 days before the 2016 election