Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Monday, November 18, 2019

A CBS News investigation has uncovered a possible pay-for-play scheme involving the Republican National Committee and President Donald Trump's nominee for ambassador to the Bahamas. Emails obtained by CBS News show the nominee, San Diego billionaire Doug Manchester, was asked by the RNC to donate half a million dollars as his confirmation in the Senate hung in the balance, chief investigative correspondent Jim Axelrod reports.

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Trump tweeted, "I would also like to thank 'Papa' Doug Manchester, hopefully the next Ambassador to the Bahamas, for the incredible amount of time, money and passion he has spent on helping to bring safety to the Bahamas."

Three days after the tweet, RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel hit up Manchester for a donation. It was no small sum. In an email, obtained exclusively by CBS News, she asked Manchester, "Would you consider putting together $500,000 worth of contributions from your family to ensure we hit our ambitious fundraising goal?"

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Bradley P. Moss @BradMossEsq

It's Monday, so the new reporting today is how e-mails from @GOPChairwoman to an ambassadorial nominee for $500,000 could put her in DOJ's sights for possible criminal liability.

#1 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-11-18 10:20 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"San Diego billionaire Doug Manchester, was asked by the RNC to donate half a million dollars as his confirmation in the Senate hung in the balance"

What will the Age of Trump be known for?

#2 | Posted by Zed at 2019-11-18 11:17 AM | Reply

GAL

"It's Monday, so the new reporting today is how e-mails from @GOPChairwoman to an ambassadorial nominee for $500,000 could put her in DOJ's sights for possible criminal liability."

Not Trump's DOJ I'll bet.

#3 | Posted by Twinpac at 2019-11-18 01:03 PM | Reply

After all, it worked for Gordon Sondland.

OCU

#4 | Posted by OCUser at 2019-11-18 01:04 PM | Reply

What will the Age of Trump be known for?

#2 | Posted by Zed

Sycophants and yes-men (and yes-women too!).

#5 | Posted by horstngraben at 2019-11-18 01:10 PM | Reply

What will the Age of Trump be known for?

#2 | POSTED BY ZED

Corruption.

Expect an avalanche of new laws from Congress to prevent corruption in the highest levels of government that will only apply to the lowest levels of government. The janitors will go to jail for stealing a pen or a paper towel but political appointees will still be as corrupt as ever will continue to steal elections with impunity.

#6 | Posted by donnerboy at 2019-11-18 01:11 PM | Reply

"Not Trump's DOJ I'll bet."

True, unfortunately.

#7 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-11-18 01:14 PM | Reply

Don't quote me on this...I wish Hans could fire up the wayback machine...but I recall conservatives accusing Obama of rewarding big donors with ambassadorships (he did - he named 31 bundlers and 39 other donors and allies as ambassadors) and liberals responding with "nothing new, everyone does it". Now the coin flips and both sides take an opposite position and show equal amounts of faux-rage. The DR has gone from being a debate to a domestic squabble.

#8 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2019-11-18 01:41 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

publicintegrity.org

#9 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2019-11-18 01:42 PM | Reply

Now do this with Nicole Avant, Obama's ambassador to...wait for it...the Bahamas.

Pro Tip: look at who she is married to.

#10 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2019-11-18 01:43 PM | Reply

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"Possible"

No, it's a de facto corrupt scheme until this --------- administration proves otherwise.

#11 | Posted by JOE at 2019-11-18 01:47 PM | Reply

The DR has gone from being a debate to a domestic squabble.

#8 | POSTED BY MUSTANG

See how easy it is to start thinking that this level of corruption is normal?

The President can freely select his cabinet.

Political appointees are almost always selected from the Presidents supporters. Usually they are actually qualified. Tho not always.

And never as a bribe. You cannot promise a job in return for money. And the President is not allowed to extort money in return for a job.

So wake up mustang. This. Behavior. Is. Not Normal.


#12 | Posted by donnerboy at 2019-11-18 01:50 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#10 | POSTED BY RIGHTOCENTER

Some of us have been hammering BOTH parties against this pay to play in politics scheme.

Sad there are so many of us caught in the middle of two parties' corruption.

#13 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2019-11-18 01:54 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

@#12 ... You cannot promise a job in return for money. And the President is not allowed to extort money in return for a job ...

That is the important aspect here.

#14 | Posted by LampLighter at 2019-11-18 01:56 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

The question is: Was it inappropriate for the RNC to ask for the donation during Manchester's confirmation hearings?:

"The RNC said it was inappropriate for Manchester to link the donation to his ambassadorship nomination and added that it has since returned the money donated by the family this year."

www.rawstory.com

#15 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-11-18 01:56 PM | Reply

Manchester had already given 1 million dollars to Trump's Inaugural Fund, but that apparently wasn't enough, so McDaniel hit him up for $500,000 more.

#16 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-11-18 02:00 PM | Reply

What will the Age of Trump be known for?

#2 | POSTED BY ZED AT 2019-11-18 11:17 AM | FLAG:

Ummm, let me think.

Transparency and honesty? Restoring respect for America around the world? Justice and equality? Eliminating the deficit? Great health care plan? Hiring the best people?

#17 | Posted by cbob at 2019-11-18 02:12 PM | Reply

Perfect timing for Congress to now ask Sondland if anyone from the RNC, Trump Campaign or in any other way connected to Trump attempted to solicit donations while he was awaiting confirmation.

#18 | Posted by johnny_hotsauce at 2019-11-18 02:27 PM | Reply

Glad that swamp has been drained.

#19 | Posted by moder8 at 2019-11-18 02:33 PM | Reply

Wow, my #8 played out right in front of our eyes in the ensuing posts.

#20 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2019-11-18 02:46 PM | Reply

"Wow, my #8 played out right in front of our eyes in the ensuing posts."

From the article you linked to, it seems Trump is the biggest, best and most secretive in his approach:

President-elect Donald Trump has begun nominating the people who he wants to represent U.S. interests abroad.

But even Trump, who despite his "drain the swamp" mantra has been rewarding major campaign donors with prime positions in his cabinet, will find it difficult to match President Barack Obama's legacy of sending top political patrons to the world's poshest capital cities, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis. (The practice has been embraced by Democratic and Republican presidents alike for generations.)

During his second term, Obama named 31 campaign "bundlers" " supporters who raised at least $50,000 to fund his presidential campaigns" as ambassadors. Obama tapped nearly all of these bundlers to serve in Western European nations or other highly developed and stable countries such as Canada and New Zealand. . . .

Obama voluntarily identified his biggest campaign bundlers, making it possible to determine whether he was offering them ambassadorships. Trump, however, took what federal law allowed him during his presidential campaign " the ability to keep all his campaign bundlers secret, save for those who are federally registered lobbyists.


#21 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-11-18 02:56 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Here's a good article on the bi-partisan history of naming donors to ambassadorships:

Donors to the Trump inaugural committee got ambassador nominations. But are they qualified?

"Trump's picks are less qualified than prior presidents'," said a law professor at Marquette who has looked at the qualifications of nearly 2,000 nominees.

www.nbcnews.com

Some points that seem relevant to this thread's discussion:

When President Donald Trump's pick for ambassador to the Bahamas testified before Congress to make the case for his nomination, he incorrectly stated that the island nation was part of the U.S. It is an independent country.

An NBC News review of those who donated to the Trump inauguration found at least 14 major contributors to its inaugural fund who were later nominees to become ambassadors, donating an average of slightly over $350,000 apiece. Though the Trump administration says the business acumen of these nominees qualifies them to represent the U.S. abroad, six of the 14 nominations have languished for months in the Republican-controlled Senate. One nomination has stalled for about two years.

While it is not unusual for a president to offer plum posts to wealthy donors, the Trump administration is nominating a greater number of political appointees to top-level slots, and is seeing a larger share stall in the Senate, according to two diplomatic experts and a senior Senate staffer.

#22 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-11-18 03:03 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Also of note:

Since the 1950s, roughly two-thirds of confirmed ambassadors have been career foreign service officials and one-third have been political appointees. Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush kept within that range, according to the American Foreign Service Association (AFSA), which is comprised of current and former diplomats.

The Trump administration is different. Of its confirmed appointees, around 50 percent are career foreign service diplomats, and 50 percent are political appointees, according to AFSA. . . .

But the rules for giving to an incoming president's inaugural fund were different in the past. According to Trevor Potter, president of the nonprofit Campaign Legal Center and a former Bush appointee to the Federal Election Commission, the Trump inaugural fund did not impose any donation limits, unlike those of past presidents. Some of Trump's nominees gave $1 million to that fund alone.

#23 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-11-18 03:06 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"San Diego billionaire Doug Manchester, was asked by the RNC to donate half a million dollars as his confirmation in the Senate hung in the balance"

So nice to see government finally being run like a business!

#24 | Posted by snoofy at 2019-11-18 03:12 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

"Not Trump's DOJ I'll bet."

Twin, maybe SDNY will look into it as part of their investigation, providing Barr doesn't put the kibosh on it:

SDNY Investigating $107 Million In Trump Inaugural Funds

bipartisanreport.com

#25 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-11-18 03:17 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"Here's a good article on the bi-partisan history of naming donors to ambassadorships:"

Which they won't read. And don't care.

Because mustang and company are all about the facts.

Am I right Maggots?

Build that wall!

#26 | Posted by donnerboy at 2019-11-18 03:34 PM | Reply

With 8 Trump aides and friends now convicted felons, this only adds to the pile of nefariousness on behalf of Trump and his people and the shady self-dealing behind the scenes - like bribing the Ukraine with needed military aid in their ongoing war against Russian incursions that had already taken over 13,000 lives.

ROC tried a 'whataboutism' with Obama, but no one from the Obama administration was ever arrested, and no hint of impropriety or scandal ... in 8 years. And Doug Manchester couldn't pass a Senate confirmation by a Senate committee and body of the Trump's own party. What's that tell ya?

Also, as Gal pointed out, typically 2/3rds of diplomats are professional foreign service offices. Trump's lowered that bar to 50% over his grifting.

BTW, unlike Obama, Trump set no limit on contributions to his inaugural fund. And we still don't have a clue what happened to the millions that were never spent.

#27 | Posted by AMERICANUNITY at 2019-11-18 03:53 PM | Reply

OTOH
"I was supposed to announce that there was another billion-dollar loan guarantee," Mr. Biden said.

"I had gotten," he added, "a commitment from [President] Poroshenko and from [Prime Minister] Yatsenyuk that they would take action against the state prosecutor. And they didn't. So they said they had " they were walking out to a press conference. I said, nah, I'm not going to " or, we're not going to give you the billion dollars. They said, you have no authority. You're not the president.'"

"The president said " I said, call him," Mr. Biden replied, evoking, the CFR transcript notes, laughter.

"I said, I'm telling you, you're not getting the billion dollars.' I said, You're not getting the billion. I'm going to be leaving here in,' I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: I'm leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you're not getting the money.' Well, son of a bitch. [Laughter.] He got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time."

#28 | Posted by Greatamerican at 2019-11-18 04:07 PM | Reply

#28

Oh FFS, try to get to the truth. Let's hear what some Republicans have to say about this:

you don't have to take my word for it: Take what Sens. Ron Johnson (R-WI) and Rob Portman (R-OH) have recently said about Shokin's 2016 departure. "The whole world felt that this that Shokin wasn't doing a [good] enough job. So we were saying, Hey, you've ... got to rid yourself of corruption," Johnson told the radio program The Vicki McKenna Show on Thursday. And then on Monday, Portman told Ohio's Columbus Dispatch the same thing. While the article doesn't contain quotes to this effect, it describes Portman as "disput[ing] Trump's characterization of an ousted Ukrainian as an aggressive battler of corruption," saying he and other lawmakers "believed the prosecutor wasn't doing nearly enough to root out corruption " not because he was doing too much." This isn't terribly surprising. Johnson and Portman were two of three GOP senators who co-signed a bipartisan 2016 letter to Ukraine's then-president calling for him to "press ahead with urgent reforms to the Prosecutor General's office and judiciary." Four days later, Shokin resigned
www.vox.com

#29 | Posted by Danforth at 2019-11-18 04:13 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Hey, Mustang and ROC,

Even the Republican Party brass has a problem with this latest attempt at a quid pro quo, calling it "inappropriate" and cutting ties with Manchester. But you guys are fine with it. Interesting.

thehill.com

#30 | Posted by cbob at 2019-11-18 04:48 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

I agree nothing new with rewarding political allies and such. That isn't going to change. The PROBLEM is the quid pro quo. You have to donate for us to finish giving you the job. No money = no job i.e. Quid Pro Quo.

Donate a half million and then get nominated for and be given a job - a reward to a supporter. Not that I agree with it but it is at least palatable. I am sure there are "gentleman's" agreements all the time.

Holding up a job you are in the process of getting for a donation = outright blatant corruption.

#31 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2019-11-18 05:03 PM | Reply

Even the Republican Party brass has a problem with this latest attempt at a quid pro quo, calling it "inappropriate" and cutting ties with Manchester. But you guys are fine with it. Interesting.
thehill.com
#30 | POSTED BY CBOB

70% of the country agrees. Only issue now is what to do with the POTUS.
51% want impeachment AND removal. We just hit week 2 of the hearings WITHOUT primary witnesses, the GOPs main criticism about this impeachment inquiry process. Those primary witnesses will testify this week and already more than half of the country want impeachment and removal. We're about 15% of public opinion shifting towards impeachment and removal to consider this might actually ------- happen.

#32 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2019-11-18 06:35 PM | Reply

Holding up a job you are in the process of getting for a donation = outright blatant corruption.
#31 | POSTED BY GALAXIEPETE

Blagojevich comes to mind, which explains why Trump has ANY interest in pardoning a career Democrat.

#33 | Posted by rstybeach11 at 2019-11-18 06:36 PM | Reply

We just hit week 2 of the hearings WITHOUT primary witnesses, the GOPs main criticism about this impeachment inquiry process. Those primary witnesses will testify this week...

#32 | Posted by rstybeach11

Republicans have nothing but to squawk about nonsense.

As you and I and others know to be the facts:

There are 50 Republicans on the committees that heard previous closed-door testimony. A quarter of their House membership.

#34 | Posted by AMERICANUNITY at 2019-11-18 07:19 PM | Reply

#30

Not saying I was fine with it, but I didn't hear you complain about Ted Sarandos' wife.

Are you good with that?

#35 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2019-11-18 07:32 PM | Reply

#30

Not saying I was fine with it, but I didn't hear you complain about Ted Sarandos' wife.

Are you good with that?

#35 | Posted by Rightocenter

Then why show up and immediately whatabout Obama?

#36 | Posted by jpw at 2019-11-18 07:46 PM | Reply

Not saying I was fine with it, but I didn't hear you complain about Ted Sarandos' wife.

Are you good with that?

#35 | Posted by Rightocenter

Apples and oranges.

She wasn't asked for a $500,000 donation during her confirmation process.

BTW, which she passed and Manchester did not, despite the shakedown.

#37 | Posted by AMERICANUNITY at 2019-11-18 08:00 PM | Reply

Seems Pay-To-Play has been very common for the dems in the past: Big Donors & Bundlers Among Obama's Ambassador Picks www.opensecrets.org

I heard about this years ago, but the, your libbie media would not informed you about that. Seems that your 'major media' has bee verh irresponsible for years by either hushing up stories, or giving slanted versions which the gullible left eat up as gospel truth.

Still waiting to hear more about the Virginia Beach shooter or the Santa Clarita shooters - do not expect to find much as they did not fit your media's narrative. Then there was the buried Epstein story just to name a few.

#38 | Posted by MSgt at 2019-11-19 03:51 PM | Reply

In reference to #10

A State Department inspector general's report on the U.S. Embassy in the Bahamas found that Nicole Avant had presided over "an extended period of dysfunctional leadership and mismanagement, which has caused problems throughout the embassy" since her appointment in 2009. The inspector general found Nicole Avant was frequently away from the embassy often traveling to and from her home in Los Angeles. When she was in the Bahamas, she worked from her residence most of the day rather than working at the embassy. Nicole Avant "was absent from [her] post for 276 days during a 670-day period from November 19, 2009, to September 19, 2011"an average of 12 days per month. The 276 days include...102 personal leave days. [She] also traveled to the United States for 77 work days on what she identified as business, with 23 days on what appear to have been official travel orders." The report found she "had not had frequent policy-level interaction with the [State] Department or other Washington agencies... She relied unduly on her [deputy chief of mission] to attend to day-to-day contacts with the [State] Department."

en.wikipedia.org

#39 | Posted by boaz at 2019-11-20 09:16 AM | Reply

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