Hundreds of Former Bush, McCain Aides Endorse Biden for President

Hundreds of former aides to former President George W. Bush and the late Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) announced Thursday that they are endorsing Democrat Joe Biden for president.

The endorsements for the Democrat nominee come as President Donald Trump prepares to officially accept his party’s nomination on the last night of the Republican National Convention (RNC) on Thursday, NBC News reported.

A political action committee, 43 Alumni for Biden, posted a list of nearly 300 Bush administration members or campaign aides that openly supported Biden.

The names include former Secretary of Agriculture Ann Veneman as well as former ambassadors and White House staffers.

More than 100 of McCain’s congressional and campaign staffers also endorsed Biden and dissed Trump in a letter.

“Given the incumbent president’s lack of competent leadership, his efforts to aggravate rather than bridge divisions among Americans, and his failure to uphold American values, we believe the election of former Vice President Biden is clearly in the national interest,” they said in a letter.

Some former McCain aides who signed the letter include Mark Salter, the senator’s one-time chief-of-staff; Mike Murphy, a GOP political consultant who worked on strategy for McCain’s 2000 presidential campaign; Christian Ferry, who was McCain’s deputy campaign manager for his 2008 bid for the presidency; and Joe Donoghue, who served as McCain’s legislative director.

Trump and McCain frequently butted heads, especially over efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

Several other Republicans also jumped ship to the Democrat side to endorse Biden last week at the Democratic National Convention, including former Secretary of State Colin Powell, former New York Rep. Susan Molinari, former New Jersey Gov. Christine Todd Whitman, and former Ohio Gov. John Kasich.

All of these Republicans just so happened to speak at the 1996 Republican National Convention nominating Bob Dole in his failed bid against former President Bill Clinton.


Top DNC Speaker Susan Molinari Made Millions Lobbying For Russia, Federal Records Show

The heavily promoted formerly Republican lawmaker endorsing Joe Biden for president tonight at the Democratic National Convention was a highly paid Russian lobbyist whose firm was paid millions of dollars for work on behalf of the Kremlin, federal records show.

According to federal documents filed pursuant to the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), the lobbying firm run by former Rep. Susan Molinari and its business partner received nearly $2.5 million in just one six-month period in 2008 to “cover fees and expenses for providing services for the benefit of the Russian Federation.” During the final of the year, the Russian lobbying deal made the consortium another $2.8 million for its work on behalf of the Kremlin, records show.

Molinari, who ran for and won the same congressional seat vacated by her father in 1989, left Congress in 1997 to embark on a lucrative career promoting the interests of foreign governments in Russia, Bangladesh, and Panama.  Molinari’s former firm The Washington Group was part of a consortium of high-powered marketing and lobbying operations that raked in more than $60 million from the Russian Federation to improve the country’s image in the United States.

In 2016, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) launched a sprawling investigation of the Trump campaign after Russian ambassador Sergei Kislyak was spotted meeting with Republican lawmakers at the G.O.P’s nominating convention. Former White House National Security Adviser Michael Flynn was targeted, illegally leaked against, and eventually prosecuted over his conversations with Kislyak during the presidential transition in 2016 and 2017. Federal records show, however, that Molinari’s lobbying partner worked directly for Kislyak to burnish his image to American voters.

According to a 2008 Politico investigation, Molinari’s lobbying partner “drew up an introductory public affairs plan for him that included receptions with Washington influencers, prepping for Q&A sessions and an op-ed to herald the new relationship with America.”

Government documents show that Molinari’s lobbying work even included meeting with the staff of then-Sen. Joe Biden when he served as chairman of the the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to lobby on behalf of the Kremlin:

Molinari’s firm also lobbied to admit Russia to the World Trade Organization. The Washington Group kept its “lucrative” contract even after Russia invaded Georgia in the summer of 2008. As the Hill reported at the time:

“The day after Georgian troops attacked rebels in the breakaway province of South Ossetia, senior lobbyists such as former Rep. Susan Molinari (R-N.Y.) contacted aides to Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), ranking member on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Justice records show.”

Molinary resigned as CEO of the pro-Kremlin lobbying firm in the fall of 2008.


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