Tuesday, October 15, 2019

The Blumenthal Burisma Connection


Steve Hilton, a Fox News commentator who over the weekend had connected some Burisma corruption dots, had this to say about Connecticut U.S. Senator Dick Blumenthal’s association with the tangled knot of corruption in Ukraine: “We cross-referenced the Senate co-sponsors of Ed Markey's Ukraine gas bill with the list of Democrats whom Burisma lobbyist, David Leiter, routinely gave money to and found another one -- one of the most sanctimonious of them all, actually -- Sen. Richard Blumenthal."

Hilton first rolls out the cast of characters. Devon Archer, “the longtime business partner of Joe Biden's son, Hunter,” joined the board of Directors of Burisma, a natural gas producer in Ukraine, sometime in April 2014. Soon after, Archer “had a private meeting with Vice President Biden at the White House late into the night, according to White House records.” Two day later, Hunter Biden, Vice President Joe Biden’s son, also joined the Burisma Board, and three day later “Vice President Biden went to Ukraine with promises of U.S. taxpayer cash for the Ukrainian gas industry.” Money, some believe undeserved, soon started flowing Hunter Biden’s way. Burisma recompensed Hunter somewhere in the neighborhood of $50,000 a month for his questionable “services.”

Hilton notes that “bank records taken from an unrelated FBI raid of Devon Archer's office in 2016 showed that Biden and Archer's firm, Rosemont Seneca, received monthly payments from Burisma with sums of over $150,000, sometimes even as high as $220,000, according to Fox News contributor John Solomon.”

Hilton speculates that Hunter Biden may have been more than a placeholder. Burisma’s founder, “a shady character called Mykola Zlochevsk, used his time as Ukraine's environment minister to hand out gas licenses from which Burisma would end up profiting.” Amazingly, though charges of corruption and embezzlement had been swirling around Zlochevsk for years, he had managed to escape prosecution. Is it possible, Hilton asks, that Ukrainian prosecutors feared to touch Zlochevsk because Hunter, the son of the Vice President of the United States, was on the board of Burisma? Hunter’s presence in the lap of corruption, Hilton reasoned, may have signaled Ukrainian prosecutors that “Zlochevsk had the backing of the American Vice President who was acting like some kind of Imperial consul in Ukraine. His word was basically law.”

Possibilities of this kind ought to be fully explored by competent authorities here in the United States. That may be why U.S. Attorney General Bob Barr and his special investigator, U.S. Attorney from the District of Connecticut John Durham are fetching around in the political muck in Ukraine and elsewhere.

And there is plenty of muck for journalistic muckrakers to explore as well. Muck of one kind or another has always sold newspapers. Today’s Hartford Courant features a long piece on the editorial page written by Edward Marcus, a former Democrat State Central Committee Chairman and State Senate Majority Leader in Connecticut, calling upon the members of the state’s all Democrat U.S. Congressional Delegation to support the impeachment of Barr, among others in the Trump administration on charges of treason. Though President Donald Trump has yet to tweet that any such interference in an ongoing Justice Department probe must be regarded, even by a fake news media, as an unwarrantable obstruction of justice, it’s probably in his Tweet hopper.

Should Blumenthal recuse himself from any effort to charge Barr with – treason! Hilton makes a sound case for recusal.

Hunter Biden’s business partner, Devon Archer, was once a top fundraiser for John Kerry, Secretary of State during the muck-days of the Obama administration. Shortly after Archer and Hunter Biden had joined forces with the corrupt and corrupting Burisma, “the company,” Hilton tells us, “channeled $90,000 to a lobbying firm called ML Strategies, which was headed by none other than David Leiter, John Kerry's former chief of staff. Registered as Burisma's lobbyist in mid-2014, Leider “gave close to $60,000 to Democrats, including a select group of U.S. senators who would later be instrumental in pushing cash towards Ukraine's energy sector, directly in line with Burisma's interests.”

One of the principal beneficiaries of Leider’s largess was then Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts, author of a letter to Obama beseeching the President to “leverage the full resources and expertise of the U.S. government to assist Ukraine in improving its energy efficiency, increasing its domestic production and reforming its energy markets." Vice President Biden was put in charge of the effort.

Markey, Hilton says, “was the Senate sponsor of the Green New Deal! He wants to shut down gas production in America. Yet he personally intervened with the Obama administration to send your tax dollars to boost Ukraine's gas production. And not just once.” Archer, Hunter Biden's crony, funneled Burisma money to Richard Blumenthal “three times in 2013. The next year, Blumenthal returned the favor by backing legislation that would directly benefit Burisma and Hunter Biden.”

Ed Marcus has yet to call for the impeachment of Blumenthal on grounds of treason, but partisan hack Blumenthal should recuse himself from any and all attempts to frustrate the Barr-Durham long awaited investigation into the so far failed attempt by Democrats to vacate the 2016 presidential election. It would be the moral and decent thing to do.

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