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Jesse Benton and Eric Beach, super nice guys who just want to Make America Great, with Chinese help if necessary.


Oh, hey, looks like a PAC working for Donald Trump kind of got caught on undercover video agreeing to accept a couple million dollars from journalists posing as representatives of a fictitious Chinese donor. It's the kind of undercover "sting" that rightwing goofus James O'Keefe spent a year trying to pull against organizations related to the Hillary Clinton campaign, only this one was done by real journalists, doesn't appear to involve any trick editing, and caught something that appears to be clearly illegal.

Here's the setup: Reporters from the Telegraph pretended to be consultants acting on behalf of a rich Chinese donor approached several fundraisers and groups supporting the Clinton and Trump campaigns, asking if they could please, please help their client give the campaigns his very Chinese and very illegal money. None of the groups supporting Clinton responded, even though Donald Trump loves accusing her of being in the pocket of those darn international bankers. But in early October, the reporters heard back from Eric Beach, the co-chair of the pro-Trump Great America PAC. The reporters told him a Chinese client would just love to help Mr. Trump make America great again, to the tune of $2 million, if they could only find a way to do that.

Mr Beach appeared interested despite raising concerns about his nationality and saying he would need to know the donor’s identity.

He suggested the donation could be put through a social welfare organisation called a 501(c)(4) - or C4 - , which unlike a PAC is not subject to a blanket ban on receiving foreign money, and not required to name donors. He stressed in an email that "any path we recommend is legal".

Hey, he raised concerns and then came up with a way of disguising the donation, so that's due diligence, isn't it? Not long afterward, the reporter was contacted by Jesse Benton, who had worked for the PAC until May, when he was convicted of bribing a former Iowa state senator to endorse Ron Paul in 2012. (You may recall Mr. Benton from 2014, when he quit working for Mitch McConnell after complaining of his old man stank, and also when that state senator pleaded guilty to taking the bribe. Boy just can't keep a job.) Benton told the reporter he was a "consultant" helping out Beach, who didn't want a "paper trail" for some reason. Not surprisingly, when the reporters later asked Benton and Great America PAC about the whole thing, they both said Benton hadn't worked for the PAC since May, and how dare anyone suggest otherwise?

But when he still thought he could grab some cash to help Donald Trump save America, Benton was just full of ideas!

Mr Benton proposed channelling the donation through his own company to mask its origin. It would then be passed on to two C4s before being donated by them to the PAC, or simply used to fund projects the PAC had already planned.

Mr Benton said the $2 million, for which he would submit an invoice for “appearances” would “definitely allow us to spend two million more dollars on digital and television advertising for Trump.” The Chinese benefactor's generosity would be “whispered into Mr Trump’s ear.” He said he had previously helped US donors conceal donations.

Chinese money isn't just fun, it's fungible! Of course, Benton did warn the "consultants" that "You shouldn’t put any of this on paper" and that he couldn't meet the reporters at a Las Vegas party held by the PAC, assuring them that "everything that we’re doing is legal by the book but there’s perceptions and some grey areas."

Oopsies, looks like they went and put all of that on paper anyway! And here is some video of Mssrs. Beach and Benton offering to be all helpful-like, with some thrilling electronic beats. It's corruption you can dance to:

Mind you, once the reporters came forward to ask the PAC about how the nice gentlemen had offered, in some detail, to help launder some funds from an illegal foreign donor, everyone involved made it clear they would never in a million years even think of touching $2 million in delicious, campaign-sustaining money if it were tainted in any way. A lawyer for the PAC, Dan Backer, said Benton hadn't worked for it since May, and had to have been offering to do some research work that was completely legal, for pete's sake:

He suggested Mr Benton had simply engaged in “puffery and self-promotion”, adding that “the conduct of the PAC and Mr. Beach’s conduct was appropriate, ethical and legal at all times.”

Mr Backer added that "The PAC has never ... solicited or accepted contributions from a foreign national or entity" and said Mr Beach had been suggesting how "a US company with a foreign parent company could potentially engage in legal political activity".

The Trump campaign also disavowed any connection with Benton, too, so there's no way he could possibly whisper anything in Mr. Trump's ear:

Asked if Mr Trump's campaign was aware of the scheme suggested by Mr Benton, his spokeswoman said: "We publicly disavowed this group back in April. This is public via Federal Election Commission filings.

The tape then self-destructed after ten seconds.

Go read the whole thing at the Telegraph; it's a pretty solid piece of reporting, and the reporters certainly seem to have caught Beach and Benton offering to do some dirty deeds. In other words, more lies from the dishonest lying media, and now it appears Crooked Hillary has managed to even get British newspapers working for her to bring down Trump. Shame on her!

[Telegraph]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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