On Tuesday, a New York Times report rocked Washington with the allegations that former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort turned over information to the Russians during the campaign.
President Donald Trump himself addressed the issue for the first time on Thursday, when he vehemently denied knowing anything about Manafort’s actions.
Sloppy Legal Work
This information being made public was the result of some extremely bad legal work on the part of Manafort’s legal team.
Manafort’s legal team had filed an appeal that was supposed to have been sealed and protected.
However, certain aspects of the filing were unintentionally made public, resulting in the story by the New York Times — and more trouble for Trump.
The filings were made on behalf of Manafort because Manafort is fighting the position held by Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his team that Manafort lied during several parts of his testimony.
Two of the areas of concern here are a Ukrainian Peace Plan and polling data from the presidential campaign.
Why He Was Fired
Of note is the fact that Manafort was fired when Trump officials found out he had been lobbying for pro-Russian forces in Ukraine.
Taking that into consideration, it is extremely likely that if Manafort shared any data, he was doing so for personal gain rather than to benefit the Trump campaign.
Furthermore, it still does not prove the campaign as a whole was working with the Russians to influence the outcome of the presidential campaign.
Manafort has already been convicted on eight counts of tax and bank fraud.
He was reportedly cooperating with Mueller, but his alleged lying shattered the plea deal he’d worked out with the special counsel.
Now, his legal problems have once again become Trump’s problems, as the media is already blowing this story up and getting its legal pundits to say this proves collusion on the part of the campaign and Russia — but they are wrong.
If this is, in fact, true, it simply proves that Manafort was doing something wrong — not Donald Trump, and definitely not his entire campaign.
It is likely that this truly was nothing more than a nefarious act by one individual for personal gain. Period.