Trump Inauguration Facing One Or Twelve Tiny Investigations, NBD
Within the past 24 hours, there have been three stories about shady shit at the Trump inauguration. Begin as you intend to go on, as they say. And Boy Howdy, did they ever! The inauguration was already under investigation by federal prosecutors in Manhattan and Brooklyn, as well as the Special Counsel's Office (SCO). So obviously, this is yet another DEEP STATE WITCH HUNT, right? Right?
Okay, glove up kids. We're going in!
The New York Times Finds One or Two Suspicious Transactions in the Inauguration's Books
When SDNY prosecutors raided Michael Cohen's office last April, they found a recording of him talking to Melania's socialite BFF Stephanie Winston Wolcoff, who had been hired to run the inauguration and was known to wave her phone at staff and threaten that she could get them fired with one text to Ivanka or Melania. (Treat yourself to this amazing story about Wolcott in Town & Country, MEE-OWW!) Wolcof was freaking out that the Trump hotel was overcharging the inauguration for rooms, telling Ivanka in an email, "Please take into consideration that when this is audited it will become public knowledge." She also took up the apparent price gouging by the Trump Hotel with Michael Cohen and Manafort's little buddy Rick Gates, who stayed with the campaign and was deputy chair of the inauguration committee.
Trump's billionaire pal Tom Barrack, who chaired the inauguration committee, pinky swears that there was an audit of how the record-breaking $107 million donated to celebrate the incoming Grifter in Chief was spent. But he's not releasing the audit, and no, he's not going to tell you which firm performed it.
Here's a few tidbits unearthed by the Times:
- $6.4 million was simply wasted by booking hotel rooms in advance for people who never showed up, despite the fact that Wolcoff used non-local vendors, who brought in extensive staff weeks before the inauguration;
- Ms. Wolcoff's firm took a $1.6 million "supervisory fee" as well as $26 million that they claim was mostly passed on to vendors, and managed a team of videographers who documented the event in hopes of selling the "broadcast rights" in case maybe Netflix or Amazon would want to air an extended documentary on the glorious event (LOLOL);
- David Monn, a New York party planner who refused to sign a contract, was paid $3.7 million, including "$924,000 on seven-foot-high wreaths, moss-covered obelisks, flowers and other decorations," $10,000 of makeup services for 20 people, and $136,000 on menus, place cards, and calligraphy, for one party;
- Wolcoff's business partner Jonathan Reynaga charged the inauguration $34,000 in hotel rooms, including $18,000 at the Trump International Hotel;
- Trump's previous digital ratfucker and current campaign manager Brad Parscale pocketed $2 million to publicize the event online.
Daily Beast Says It's Mueller Time, DEVIN!
We have not lived a good enough life to deserve to watch legislative shitmuffin Devin Nunes get perp walked off to Club Fed. But still, our hearts are a-flutter with the news that Robert Mueller is investigating a diplomatic breakfast on January 18, 2016, attended by Michael Flynn and Congressman Cowlove. (Allegedly!) The Daily Beast reports that all Mike Flynn's best pals were in attendance:
Country officials invited to the breakfast included Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Israel, Lithuania, Estonia, Denmark, Japan, Angola and others. Former Kazakh Ambassador Kairat Umarov attended the breakfast, as did two senior Qatari officials.
Cool, cool. If you need a refresher on Devin Nunes's greatest hits -- the time he ninja'd out of an Uber so he could go get classified intel from the White House and then claim in a breathless presser that he got it from a whistleblower, the bullshit memo where he tried to frame the FBI for DEEP STATE WITCH HUNTING Donald Trump, the time he got caught on tape saying Republicans had to preserve their Congressional majority to protect Trump -- the Daily Beast has got you covered. But don't miss Evan's write up on that fun time Devin Nunes tried to force the NSA to set up a listening post in his ancestral home on the Azores.
Pleasepleaseplease let that little weasel go down!
Needz Moar Oligarchs
Have we mentioned there were a shit ton of Ukrainian oligarchs at Trump's inauguration? We have. And Al Jazeera has a story today about Pavel Fuchs, an oligarch who paid an intermediary $200,000 for tickets to see President No Collusion ascend the throne, and then wound up with bad seats. Mr. Fuchs would like to speak to your manager, please! Or break both your legs, whatever.
The gas and real estate tycoon was furious that two tickets he purchased for $200,000 left him and a Ukrainian member of parliament with bad seats, according to two well-placed sources speaking to Al Jazeera's Investigative Unit, a Ukrainian newspaper editor and other journalists.
Fuchs allegedly warned the businessman who facilitated the purchase he wanted his money back and if he did not get it he would "tear him apart".
It's alleged he then issued a series of threats to others involved in the deal.
He seems nice. Check out this handsome picture of Mr. Fuchs. Gosh, who's that guy with him -- he looks kind of familiar!
Because if there's an unsavory guy with deep pockets accused of buying up assets looted by deposed Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, you know he's got to have Ol' Rudy on the payroll. That train is never late.
Okay, enough with these snakes. They're so corrupt it's almost comical. Almost ... but not quite.
LOCK THEM UP.
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Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.