Donald Trump ran for president for two reasons and two reasons only.
Firstly, he needed to feed the soulless vacuum that is his undeservedly massive ego and saw no better way of doing that than becoming the most powerful man in the world.
Secondly, he knew he would be able to abuse the powers of the Executive Branch to enrich himself and his inner circle. The first objective may have backfired since he has quickly become the most reviled man in the world, but the second has been an unmitigated success for him and his corrupt friends and family.
A new report from The Washington Post reveals that shortly after Trump won the 2016 election, lobbyists working on behalf of the Saudi Arabian government rented out rooms en masse inside the Trump International Hotel in Washington D.C., shelling out money for roughly 500 nights in a three-month span.
The lobbyists were working on a rather strange operation to give U.S. armed forces veterans paid-for trips to D.C. where they were expected to lobby against a piece of legislation that the Saudi government wanted to be scuttled. The bill in question would allow the families of 9/11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia for financing and organizing the terror attacks that killed over 3,000 Americans.
In total, six visits were organized and the lobbyists ended up spending over $270,000 to put the veterans up in Trump’s hotel at an average rate of $768 per night, meaning the money was flowing directly into his coffers. The expenditures have since become part of two federal lawsuits that claim President Trump violated the emoluments clause of the Constitution.
Some of the veterans involved claim they did not know about the Saudi involvement behind the lobbying campaign.
“It made all the sense in the world, when we found out that the Saudis had paid for it,” said Navy veteran Henry Garcia, who says that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was not mentioned in the initial invitiation.
During the trip, Garcia says one of the trip organizers was drinking champagne and let slip a comment about a Saudi prince. It was then that reality set in for the Navy veteran.
“I said, ‘Oh, we were just used to give Trump money,’” Garcia said.
The lobbyists weren’t shy about spending money either, lavishing the veterans at every turn in the interest of pumping as much cash as possible into Donald’s pockets.
“We’ve done hundreds of veterans events, and we’ve stayed in Holiday Inns and eaten Ritz Crackers and lemonade. And we’re staying in this hotel that costs $500 a night. I’d never seen anything like this. They were like, ‘That’s what’s so cool! Drink on us,’” said Marine veteran Dan Cord.
While the lobbyists insist that they picked Trump’s hotel simply because it had affordable vacancies, one would have to be a fool to view the operation as anything less than a deliberate effort by KSA’s lobbyists to influence the newly elected president so he would view their agenda in a favorable light.
“We’d walk in there, and they’d go, ‘Are you the veterans that are getting bribed?’ ” Army veteran Robert Suesakul said, describing interactions with Congressional staffers who were aware of the Saudi money behind their lobbying efforts.
The veterans told The Washington Post that they were surprised at how lax the efforts to actually lobby ended up being. They were told that the bill which would allow 9/11 families to sue the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia could open the door for other countries to sue the United States, and could even lead to foreign governments prosecuting U.S. veterans for wartime activities.
A nuanced subject to be sure, but the veterans on the trips were only given light fact sheets on it. They weren’t provided with the kind of in-depth briefings that would have allowed them to serve as well-informed, convincing advocates for blocking the bill.
Furthermore, the trips were organized during stretches of time when the legislation in question was barely being discussed in Congress. Clearly, the “lobbying” pretext was used solely to hand over bribe money to Trump and his businesses.
It appears that the efforts were successful as well, given the administration’s defiant refusal to condemn Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman for ordering the murder and dismemberment of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, despite conclusive evidence from the CIA that proves Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was directly involved in his killing.
Trump is bought and paid for and must be impeached.