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tv   Glenn Simpson Crime in Progress  CSPAN  June 12, 2021 2:45pm-3:50pm EDT

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meyer on corporate espionage and research. the book looks specifically at the steele dossier. >> and glen simpson is the cofounder of the research firm that's been in the news in the years. coauthor of the book, crime and progress inside the steele dossier and the fusion gps investigation of donald trump. how did fusion gdp come about? >> good morning. we were at the wall street journal, my partner and i. >> peter. >> peter frich and the news business went into a downturn thanks to the internet and it started to evolve into a less fulfilling job for me and i was in my mid-40's and i decided
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that what i really loved to do in journalism was investigate complex cases and that there was less market for that in the journalism world, stories were getting shorter, the emphasis was on breaking news and so i decided to try to see if i could do that sort of work in a private capacity as a consultant. >> what kind of stories did you work on at the wall street journal? >> i started out covering american politics here in washington in the late 1980's, early 1990's and investigating politicians for possible corruption, writing stories about campaign finance abuses. ethics in washington, ethics in government and then over the years that evolved into different types of investigative journalism involving financial crime, fraud, corporate cases like enron, scandals like loan
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scandal, the financial crisis and then over time after 9/11, i started branching out into international criminal matters such as terrorism and organized crime. >> and what was peter fritsch's role. >> peter was my editor in mid-200's, we were stationed in brussels headquarter, the european washington journal and correspondent for most of his career, moving around from mexico to brazil to singapore, ultimately winding up in brussels with me. >> what kind of clients did you attract at fusion gps? >> a lot of law firms involved in complicated cases, big companies trying to figure out whether they were competing adequately against other companies or whether there had been some sort of irregularities in their contracts and that sort of thing. those are the big two. >> and you did what you call
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open source research. >> right. my specialty at the journal was documents. i was known as a document hound and it's really what i like to do. i like to try to amass large quantities of documents to see if i can use them to unravel a mystery or figure out a puzzle and so, you know, the united states is rich in public sources of information compared to other parts of the world and so i knew how to do that from my years at the journal. the sort of business plan was to use private clients and the greater resources they had to engage in large-scale document acquisition projects and then subject those to analysis and see if we can come up with results that would be useful to clients. generally, one of the things we called decision support. a lot of what we do is amass information that enables a
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client on how to proceed with whatever problem they are facing, whether it's a fraud case or just a decision about how to compete against other companies. >> so not a political opposition research firm? >> that was not in the business plan. >> however, in 2012, we were asked to take a look at mitt romney by some democratic folks that i knew from my years in washington and the reason they asked us to do so because our specialty is business research and we had wall street journal backgrounds and mitt romney was a private equity tycoon who had a very complicated business career and it wasn't the sort of subject that an ordinary political research from would be well equipped to do. and so that was our first big
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exposure to this area. it was not something that we set out to pursue. it was an approach that was made to us. >> were you finally successful? >> the company is very successful. it has done quite well over the years. i'm, you know, mitt romney style well off but it's a nice living. >> what was operation bangore. >> project bangore was named for a city in maine. we named our projects using random categories. sometimes we named them for cities, other times we named them for types of fish and the idea is to just not have it sort of give up any clues as to what the underlying project is about. project bangore was initiated in october, september, october of 2015 and that was a look at donald trump's business career and his long history of lawsuits
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and bankruptcies and anything that would be significant or relevant in a political context or political campaign. >> who instigated? >> an society of mine that i knew from washington and politics who said would be interested. i believe in that case it was originally my approach to him. i asked him, anyone who might be interested in funding research in donald trump and he said, i just might. >> and who answered the call? >> well, eventually we got hooked up with a newspaper here in washington called the free beacon which is a conservative-oriented internet only publication. >> and paul singer, who is paul sing sneer. >> paul singer is a reporter to have free beaco inform which is a nonprofit. i don't think i've seen documentation of that and i don't think he disputes it. >> he was the one who funded project bangore, correct?
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>> the project was funded by the free beacon. i think it was generally known at the time as it is now that paul singer is a supporter of the free beacon. >> why would a conservative publication, presumably republican fund opposition research project on donald trump? >> well, it was early primary season for the republican nomination and there was a lot of concern inside the republican party that donald trump was both not a real republican, some of his positions and his history of donations suggested he was maybe a democrat or had some policy positions that were more akin to a democrat particularly on trade, free trade. so there was some substantive concerns with his policy positions and then there was concern that he was not a viable nominee. that if he were nominated the republicans would lose because
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of his -- because of his character, because of his policy positions, you know, general sort of populist demagoguic kind of orientation that republicans had had a terrible experience with pat buchanan, damaged george bush's reelection. >> prior to that you write in your book crime in progress that -- this is from march of 2016. there was knew unanimity inside fusion to keep trump out of the white house and also unanimity as to why and many traits disqualified him for the job and political rhetoric was loathsome but ties to the criminal underworld is reliance on hidden flows of russia money and his record of business top the list. this was all prior to project
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vanguard. >> it was the first phase of project vanguard. phase two was for the democrats. you're right, this was where we were in the spring of 2016 when the republican primaries were starting to wind down. we had done, you know, 7 months of research into donald trump and had formed some very definite opinions of who this person was and whether he was qualified to be president and he wasn't. as that passage indicates, a lot of our concern didn't involve the issues that are now front and center in terms of the controversy over russia and foreign entanglements. they were really about associations of figures from the underworld, originally we were concerned about the italian mafia. he seemed to know and do business with a lot of characters who had ties to the italian mafia and later to russian or former soviet union organized crime world. >> was this in many cases a
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follow the money case? >> it was. it started out as a litigation survey i would say because donald trump -- as we talk a little bit in the book has been evolved in more law enforcements than anyone i've ever investigated. absolutely incredible number of cases and so it was a paper chase in the beginning but as time went on, i would begin to understand the business empire. we begin to try to figure out where the money was coming, indeed. and it became more and more a question of where is all of this money coming from that courses through donald trump's projects because he can't get money from banks because they won't do business with him because he went bankrupt six times. a lot of other developers won't do business with him because he has a history of not falling through in his agreements and repudiating them and so, you know, where is all this money
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coming from? it became increasingly apparent that it was coming from overseas, a lot of it. and from mystery pots overseas. >> well, you indicate that a lot of the trump tower condominiums and apartments were sold to russian. >> people from the soviet union. not all russians. that region of the world is one of the biggest sourcesover sales. >> why is is that region of the world seemed to have so many shadowy figures now than in the past? >> it's a legacy of communism. communist structures essentially made it impossible to survive if you weren't engaged in some sort of criminal activity. so it bred sort of lawless environment and then in the post communist era, that sort of culture of lawlessness eventually led to a great deal
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of steal, cheating, people weren't paying taxes, take out loans from banks and move the money out of the country. it's a real sort of sad story about the failure of our country, the west to instill more of a rule of law culture in the former soviet union. fundamentally it's a problem with the rule of law was not indebted in the dna of these countries, political systems and we've never been able to transplant it. >> did you find names connected with president trump that you had found in the mid-90's when you were doing financial stories for the wall street journal? >> so one of the first stories that i covered back then was the bank of new york scandal which is a case of russian money flowing into, you know, one of new york's biggest banks. later on peter and i, when we were in brussels, we put
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together stories along with my wife about russian hiptocracy and the people that we wrote about at the time was paul manafort and his relationship with some dubious figures from ukraine. and so we did good deal of reporting from him including raising questions of whether he was a foreign agent for some of the foreign parties, active in washington, whether he was unregistered foreign agent and also another oligarch named pascark close to kremlin. both of the characters surfaced in 2016 in connection with the trump campaign and manafort and it was shocking and disturbing to encounter them in that context and led to a great deal of concern on our part that something untoward was taking
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place here that we didn't fully understand. >> glenn simpson, some of the issues that you talk about is issue of presales. what is that? >> presales is a way of financing condo developments and someone who covered a lot of business issues over the years, it was new to me in this case. essentially what you do, you try to commit from buyers and if you can presale a third of the units, that income can be used to finance the project. so it's a way of capitalizing a development without having to get funding from a bank or some other source. and the presales also helps with promoting the development to follow buyers and if you say we presold a third of the building, that stimulates demands for the rest of the units.
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it's an area of controversy in the business because presales are often hyped and there's often a lot of puffery as they call it about how much sales you've made. if you inflate your presale claims, you can be accused of fraud by later on buyers that claim that they were misled. what we found in a lot of the trump developments was that there was a lot of hype about presales and a lot of questions about whether they really had the commitments from buyers that they claimed. >> at what point did this become a democrat-funded project? >> we transitioned between democrats and republicans. fully democrat by june of 2011. >> how did that happen? >> after we concluded that donald trump would not be a suitable person to be the president of our country, we
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reached out to some folks who knew in the democratic world and offered our services to them. there's a discussion of this in the book. i wasn't particularly enthusiastic. i was planning to sit out the general election. i thought that some of the controversies around hillary clinton. i didn't want to get involved with because she too has a lot of international, you know, dealings that i think are, you know, problematic and so we were going to sit it out but we found out so much of donald trump that was deeply disturbing, it seemed like we didn't really have a choice and that it was an obligation to keep going. >> i think you referred to hillary clinton as a lesser of two evils in here. >> that's correct. >> i mean, i have high regard for many people around her that we dealt with but having covered the clintons for many, many years, i thought that the way that they raised particularly just created a potential for
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problems. >> who was mark? >> partner at the washington law firm of perkins and originally it's a seattle headquartered law firm but they have a big washington office and they are the lead law firm for the democratic party. >> and what was his involvement in funding project vanguard? >> yes, he was the person that we went to to see if the democrats were interested in continuing this researching and he was simultaneously the lawyer for the democratic national committee and for the clinton campaign. >> dealing with the lawyer, did that give you indemnity? >> the original idea was to develop information that was
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useful and public statements and that sort of thing and it was configured as a legal preparation because of donald trump's long history of suing people for saying things about him. it didn't protect us from being sued but the possibility that we might be pseudo. and, in fact, when everything went crazy in 2017, we were nott indeminified and we had to defend ourselves. >> chris was the lead russianist and served in the former soviet union at the time that soviet union collapsed and later became head of russia desk at mi6 and then retired from the service in 2009, almost the time i left the journal. we were introduced in 2010 by a
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mutual friend. we became friendly and did a little business together in the following years. this part of the world was not our business. there's an episodic relationship and we did like working together and we did have common interests and so when we finally concluded in the spring of 2016 that there was something unexplained about donald trump's relationship with russia, he was an obvious person for us to go to -- to see if we could find out more. we had pulled tens of thousands of pages of documents and we felt that we were running out of places to look for public information and that we needed someone who was able to talk to people and see if there was more to be glenned by talking to
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people in russia. that's why we went to him. >> so was it the democratically funded project by the time christopher steele came along or still a republican? >> it was. it was. the foundation for the decision to bring him on was the work that we had done under the republicans but it was the democrat, democratic client proprovided the funding for that work. >> you mentioned political positions and he was supportive of the plo and he was antimargaret thatcher. >> i don't think that's politics today, but the truth is that i'd never really asked chris about his political views because it wasn't really germane. we didn't -- my firm is all
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ex-journalists and we are not very partisan people and generally chris has security background and the issue of partisanship doesn't feature in our daily lives and it doesn't really come up in our conversations very much. >> so when we got into this, i didn't really ask him about political orientation and the first thing he said to me is he actually had contact with trump family member which has been recently to be revealed ivanka trump. he expressed no particular animus towards trump nor any great admiration for hillary clinton. >> how did he go about his work and when did you get his first report? >> his first report came in in june of 2016. it was based on individuals who he had long-term relationships with who were from the region and were able to travel to the
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region and speak to people in the region discreetly. so it was oral interviews with people who had knowledge of donald trump's activities in russia and alleged contacts with people in the kremlin. >> how did that report get transmitted to fusion? >> the first was transmitted on paper by courier service, federal express and we quickly concluded that was not an effective way to transport information and wound ways to transmit digitally that was more secure. >> and what was in the first report and what did you do with it? >> the first report was very shocking. it's broadly stated that there was an operation by the government of russia to support donald trump and help him win election and that trump was aware of this and cooperating and expected to benefit from it.
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by then, it was beginning to be known that the russians had had hacked the democratic committee and there was some discussion of that in the first document but the overall picture was of a russian attempt to subvert the democracy in the united states and elect donald trump president and that turned out to be correct. >> what did you do with that report? >> we -- nothing initially. i mean, we eventually, obviously we eventually try today followed up and see if we could get more and i can't really get into what we did with -- what we with it in terms of our client but, you know, you can assume that information that we received, you know, would go to our clients is a normal matter of course. >> but mr. simpson at the same time you talk about in climate progress the fact that you didn't want to necessarily provide just this raw report.
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you wanted to edit it? is that fair? >> it's in the quite right. >> okay. >> so there were two things. what we can talk about that chris wanted to take this to the fbi and he thought this was a national security concern. and raised that with us and we initially were kind of hesitant because we didn't know if that was an appropriate thing to do and we didn't think the client would be wild about that idea but we ultimately concluded that if he thought that that was the right thing to do and that there was a crime in progress which is how -- where the book title comes from, that he should do that and what we didn't want to do was interfere with that process by editing the document or in any way sort of politically influencing his report to the fbi which was not really a political matter for us. it was a national security
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issue. what we did want to do and did do in terms of our own understanding of these matters is we've tried to follow up some of the information, these reports using our own methods and systems which are open source so we would look for articles in russian language media, other places, tell us more about system of the people who were named in these reports and so a lot of what we try to do is to not necessarily prove or disprove things because some of this doesn't fit the category and determine whether things in there are credible and what we concluded and still believe firmly is that a lot of the reporting was very credible. >> and, in fact, you quote mr. steele saying he feels strongly that 70% of what what's in his report is correct. >> and we would agree with that. we've been through them. we did a new evaluation for this book of the original memos with 3 years of hindsight and it's
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very strong stuff. i mean, it still holds up. >> there was one issue in that i believe in the first report, rather solicitous part of this that you weren't sure you wanted to include. >> right. so there's a story of escapade in russian hotel in moscow. chris thought it was significant. so-called pee tape. chris thought this was significant information because it could suggest that there was a black male potential that the kremlin had potential blackmail material on donald trump. in washington we had a different reaction because we come at this from a different perspective which was that this was a story that was never going to be proven or disproven and didn't really -- it was sort of neither
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here nor there for us. we were much more concerned with the overall picture of a conspiracy to subvert the election. i will add that this was not the only thing that chris found in that early reporting that created concerns about blackmail. there was also the fact that there was seemed to be a secret relationship between the kremlin and donald trump that involved money. that part of this turned out to be accurate. he was, in fact, conducting a secret business deal in russia and involved the kremlin during the 2016 campaign. so in the main, chris was right. there was compromise as they called it. you could argue back and forth whether it was personal in nature or financial in nature but you can't argue that there wasn't some kind of secret relationship there. >> how many reports were contained in the-so called steele dossier. >> i believe it was around a
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dozen over period from june through december of 2016. >> okay. first one out in june. at what point did it start leaking out to the media and how? >> so what we talk about in the book is that over the summer of 2016 as the russian hack attack intensified and the leaking of documents and the deliberate computer crimes against our client got worse and worse, we talked to reporters about things that are in the dossier but we didn't tell anyone what was in the dossier and we believed that was raw material that didn't need to go out to anyone and we just used it as information to inform our own work. so we talked to people about some of these subjects. it was only after the election that we really shared up to -- some of it was shared, i think,
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at the very beginning of this, at the very end of the election and then there was some additional sharing of the contents of this in -- after the election and in early 2017. we never intended for this to leak to the press or to be printed online. >> so january 2017, it hits the press? >> right. >> what happens? >> well, so what we did at the end because we thought it was the appropriate thing to do, we were concerned that the fbi wasn't taking this matter seriously or that there was some sort of a cover-up going on. we had seen indications that there was a lot of protrump agents. we didn't know what was going on. it was suggested that we could raise this with senator john mccain and that senator mccain could raise it with jim comey and that way we could ensure that this was being dealt with. and we felt that would hopefully put this to rest in terms of our
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obligation to sort of make sure that this didn't get swept under the rug. we gave it to one of his advisers and -- >> david kramer. >> was he a friend of yours? >> he was an acquaintance and someone that helped us in the mid-2000's when my wife and i were in the wall street journal. >> mary jacoby. >> he had been helpful to us. we trusted him from that relationship and, you know, i guess, one of the things that we kind of knock ourselves for is given that he was at that time helping journalists, ie, us we must have suspected that he was going to do the same thing and he didn't. we thought he was going to give this to senator mccain. as it turned out, he shared it with some journalists and one
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journalist ken of buzzfeed eventually published it and that happened, i think, on january 10th, a week before the inauguration and obviously all hell broke loose at that point. >> and what do you mean by all hell broke loose, what happened? >> well, we became subjects of international media frenzy and, you know, immediately became targets for trump and his associates and accused of peddling phoney information and -- >> journalism for hire. >> journalism for hire and all kind of things and we placed at the center of the controversy over donald trump had a covert relationship with the government of russia and it was pretty unpleasant. i just remember getting calls from tv stations in japan in the middle of the night and all kind of crazy stuff like that. and, of course, because of the nature of the controversy and the fact that russia was engaged
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in this hybrid war against our country, you know, created some security concerns and it was very uncomfortable. >> your firm was described as boutique, low-profile, nefarious were any of the decryptions correct? >> we are a boutique firm and we do something that's relatively unique. we combine some of the skills of journalism with other fields like intelligence, hence the name fusion. low profile, yes, but not because we are deliberately secretive and this is where, i think, we are misrepresented, but because we are just not looking for attention. you know, we just -- we are not secretive people. we are exjournallists, been in public life all my adult life basically, so this is not my first c-span interview and i've done a lot of public things. i speak at universities and
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journalism conferences and things like that. so to be called secretive is just a misnomer, but we were comfortable in our -- in anonymity and had no plans of seeking publicity. >> glenn simpson, what was christopher steele's reaction in england when this all hit the news? >> he immediately packed up the kids and left home and went to stay with friends in other places. because of his previous work on russia, there was an immediate concern that he would be in danger and that there was some -- some legitimate concern about whether there would be retaliation. and then there's the harassment of the media which, you know, you ever find yourself in the middle of one of these, there would be trucks outside your
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house and people staking out your office and trying to chase you down all of the time. it was a very kind of uncertain time and we were concerned about all sorts of things from the russians to domestic, you know, people who could be incited into doing something to us. >> during this time, there was a lot of opinion reporting and you take on your old colleagues over at the wall street journal specifically kim strassel. >> right. i guess taking on is the -- we find it most amusing that they are insistent on disaiming us and it's been a long-term campaign of defamation against us and it's beneat that paper which has a really great tradition for great journalism to constantly engage in all of these attacks against us none of
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which are really grounded in truth and so, you know, it's remarkable. for a long time they would have denunciations of us almost daily with all kinds of fanatical allegations that had no resemblance to reality. i guess the point that we try to make is, the most disingenuous aspect of it is by people who know us and are very familiar with our backgrounds as, you know, very careful journalists who are pretty straightforward and honest and so, you know, it's just sad to see them stooping to these kinds of attacks. >> all right. as you well know, the office of inspector general for the department of justice came out with a report on operation hurricane which was looking into the russia-trump connections and the wall street journal editorialized on that report and this is what they wrote on
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december 11th, 2019. the fbi corrupted the secret court process for obtaining warrants to spy on former trump aide carter page and it did so by supplying the court with false information produced by christopher steele, an agent of the hillary clinton campaign. >> just total nonsense. the material from steele, was in a footnote. carter page was a long-time espionage suspect that was under investigation for many years and it turned out was involved with some russian agents who were convicted of espionage. so, you know, that's just a very deliberate misconstruing of the history of all of this and we see this now, you know, constantly and, you know, it's really the old big lie technique of just essentially tellingen truths and repeating them as often as you can, as loudly as you can in the hopes that some people will fall for it.
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>> but in the report itself, the oig report on operation hurricane michael horowitz writes that two witnesses glenn simpson and jonathan winier, former state department official declined our request for voluntary interviews and we were unable to compel their testimony. why didn't you testify? why didn't you submit testimony to oig? >> great question. my testimony was compelled three times in front of congress and i testified for over 20 hours. i went through this entire story under oath, subject to criminal penalties and i was asked every question imaginable about the origin of this all of which was very expensive to have be represented through all of this by a team of lawyers, so when the inspector general came around after we had already done this 3 times, our position was that we had told our story and
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that the only thing that this would produce would be more legal bills and that the outcome of these interviews would be identical to the previous 3 and so, you know, they have investigated us repeatedly and they always find the same thing and so, you know, ultimately, we felt that he would come out and everyone else would come out and, in fact, that's where we are. chris steele did not start the fbi investigation. no one really did anything wrong here. there was no deep-state conspiracy to rig the election. well, essentially it's everything that we have said all along. we feel that we made the right call. >> senator grassily and congressman devin nunes play a role in crime in progress as well. >> they were the original defenders of the president who were willing to step forward and investigate the investigators and what they did for the first two years of donald trump's
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presidency was investigate us and attempts to depict us as partisan hacks, fabricators, everything that you can imagine. kremlin agents was the other great one. that went on for two years and, you know, it's sort of like the wall street journal. it's very disingenuous and they really weren't interested in getting the bottom of whether the russians really did run this massive operation to steel the election which obviously now we know they did. >> just to go back, how did the fbi get wind of the steel reports to fusion. >> originally, chris approached a long-time contact of his at the fbi. this was another guy named michael gata who is someone that chris had worked with on the fifa scandal and was organized
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crime agent and had worked with chris on russian oligarchs and shortly thereafter chris also met up with bruce ohr who is an old contact of his. >> and mr. ohr is or was at doj, correct? >> correct. he's been punished for having had the courage to listen and try to pass along some of this information along with a lot of other very decent people. there's been a campaign and vilification against civil servants and he's one of the many people who suffered through this. people ask me, how bad was it? it was unpleasant for us but it's nothing compared to the people who had their careers damaged and reputations really hurt by some of the things that have been done to them at the behest of donald trump. >> his spouse is nelly ohr and what's her connection to this?
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>> nelly ohr is a distinguished expert on russia, she's a russian linguist and worked for the cia for a time and she approached me in 2015. >> did you know her? >> i knew her from conferences and so, you know, up until recently the world of russian organized crime and expertise was very small, wasn't much interested in it. sort of like the people interested in islamic terrorism pre9/11. so, yeah, i knew her from events and had casual conversation about issues related to russian organized crime. and so she approached me in 2015, she was between full-time jobs and she was looking for part-time work and said, if you have anything, i saw your name in the newspaper, if you have anything that could use my russian language skills, i'm available. and we did at the time.
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it had nothing to do with donald trump or politics. it was a case involving an alleged russian sex trafficking investigation. and that was how that originated for. >> from the oig report involving bruce ohr. had received much but same information through direct contact with steel, ohr did not advise supervisors on the deputy general about contacts with steele and simp southern about his wife's work for fusion gps or acting as conduit until the office of the deputy attorney general leadership confronted ohr about his activities in late 2017. is that correct? >> i don't know. i mean, i don't have any reason
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to dispute it. but i just -- i don't know about the internal workings of the doj and i'm not really qualify today pass judgment. i would just add for the sake of completeness that the ig found that he hadn't violated -- he hadn't violated any rules or policies or committed any transgressions, ultimately left with labeling that a lapse in judgment and obviously in hindsight, you know, that's the ig's job, to judge things in hindsight. hindsight is 2020. a lot of other considerings here was the fact that the country was under attack and, you know, in that way, it's hard to fault him for essentially doing his job which was to protect our country. >> how did mother jones david become part of this story? >> david was someone i knew for many years on and off. we just traveled in the same circles as journalists, journalists originally and then i'd had occasional contact with
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him about stuff after i left the journal and started fusion. you know, he's investigative interrogator whore now runs the bureau here for mother jones and also espionage buff and has written at least one or two books about espionage matters and so he reached out to me at the very end of the campaign at a point when we were very concerned about what was happening inside the government and the fact that the fbi had reopened an investigation into hillary clinton and seemed to be suppressing the fact that they had an investigation in donald trump. and that really concerned us and confused us and so when he asked to talk to me, i agreed to meet him and that led eventually to him speaking over skype with chris steele and a story that ran in the final days before the
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election about how chris had provided information to the fbi. >> you expressed disappointment, you and mr. firtch, the coauthor expressed disappointment that some of the stories, some of the information that you found out was not rising to the top of the media. >> right. .. .. >> and if your intention had been paid to these issues prior
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printed. >> we are frustrated by the obama administration silent from this issue. glenn: yes, i think that i say we work we were also cognizant of the fact that they were in composition to bring the republicans in congress were very resistant to acknowledging what was really happening in doing something about it and that put them into a very difficult position and also we wouldn't know what the obama administers with during the problem with his in general is that when you are doing a case like this, and you know there's a sort of parallel on enforcement or intelligence operation looking at the same thing, you don't have any visibility into what is happening rated the fbi or the cia and so we didn't know that. >> some crime in progress, the obama administration on october some put out a statement trying to dominate the evening news cycle" the u.s. intelligence
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community is confident that the russian government directed at the recent compromises of e-mails from u.s. persons and institutions including from the u.s. political organizations that reach disclosures they are intended to interfere with a u.s. collection process october 7, 2016. what else happened that day. glenn: [laughter] a lot. wikileaks released a new batch of e-mails that completely offended everything . guess is the way the day ended. the other event that occurred on the day was washington post published an audio recording of donald trump talking about assaulting women. in all three of these events were in one day and the second one that is intended to come out perhaps the most reportedly which was this announcement by the government.
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peter: have you found efforts by the congress to investigate the 2016 election conclusive. glenn: will certainly the efforts that are taking place since the house changed hands became a democratic majority controlled have been much more serious and sincere. the first two years of this, republicans will use their power to obscure the truth and cover things up and discredit anyone else who would dare to raise concerns about what was really going on here. things have gotten better from that sent in the last year. and i think that adam schiff has been an remarkable able in the skaters . and i think that they'll cost time from the first two years of the trump presideny has left a lot of people
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confused about what really happened and created this sort of arab and can exclusive this around the russian election operation in 2016. i think the body of evidence that emerged leaves no question about what happened. there was a conservative effort and he instigated encouraged it. so you can argue about whether there's enough evidence that there was a criminal, you can argue this. you can argue about the fact that donald trump was trying to do business with russia secretly during the campaign. to my mind, the picture of what happens is actually . clear. but i get the fact people don't see that because there has been this deliberate effort to secure that. in the highest levels of our government and by donald trump
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and his attorney general and they have succeeded and to some extent in confusing people about what the facts are. peter: can you draw a straight line or a good line between your august 2015 e-mail to your republican friends and the mueller report. glenn: it is my life, so for me, there is no straight line. it is meandering actually. not quite straight. i think in general, this is the culmination of a lot of things that i've been worried about an interested in for a very long time in terms of increasing destabilization of the west by this wave of criminality coming out of the east. and the fact that it has seeped into her politics infected our
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politics in washington is something that i was writing about and worried about ten years ago. so for me, this is one long story and unfortunately it's at a point words the worrying outcome. i think people need and at one of the reasons the earth this book and talk about the snow as people really need to wake up to just how much of a threat this is to our way of life, are democratic systems and the rule of law in our country. peter: does the gps still exists. glenn: yes we are driving 15 percent firm and still working out of the same office at dupont circle it is wonderful place to work . peter: are you doing more to political work now. glenn: that's a hard question to answer, not a lot of campaign work. somewhere in washington, a lot of the things that, and, more
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recently, certainly have a political gastric to them and we talk about nina's covington court work on him. but i would say it's very small part of our business. peter: what is that . glenn: nonprofit that was set up in early 2017. to continue investigating foreign interference in the democracies reduce russian interference and by other countries in western democracy rated what we essentially a suspected and now concluded is that there is a concerted effort by the government of russia to undermine democracy democratic elections in the weston uk and france and germany, america and as much bigger than donald trump or america. this is an assault against our system. and that is really where we need to put our investigative efforts
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is in exposing of what russia is really up to your much broader scale. peter: the democracy integrity project, are the results or your research available to the general public into the media. glenn: some of it, yes. because my roll as a contractor come i don't have full visibility into what they do with things. but i believe that what some of what they've done is been put out . peter: but was started there. suet not exactly. we talked about so what happened was after the election, we lost our clients . so we continue too be concerned about these issues and we worked on them without a client for many months. so we talked about the need for some sort of effort to continue to look at this issue of russia's more on our democracy. in a talk about it with an acquaintance of mine of former
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investigator friend of mine and he is the one who incorporated the organizations and we work for it. peter: how has the last three or four years changed your life. glenn: my life is typically been turned upside down. i became a sort of the public a person that it didn't really desire or long for. and i also be hundred became this whole controversy consumed is so much of my time that it made me unable to work on sort of the other aspects of our business that i enjoy. and i had to deal with a lot of things with lawsuits that are not had to deal with much in the past. peter: you talk about potentially bankruptcy by law.
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by paying lawyers. summa there's been a very deliberate attempt to bankrupt us by lawsuits and subpoenas and it certainly seemed like it was a possibility at one point that we would just be buried in so many cases that we would not be able to pay off. no matter how much money our business would make, we would not be able to pay our lawyers. peter: what is your relationship with mr. steel and co-author peter fritz today. sue and were great friends and we talk to each other all of the time read and we mutual mutually are supportive of each other did nothing wrong and that the decision we made for the best it of our countries. and our societies. now we would like to see this through in the sense that everyone should understand what it is we are worried about here. we are all friendly.
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peter: he went through rough patches. sue and of course yes. and you're arguing, should we retreat, go forward. and so the pressure certainly makes for tense times. peter: one morning we want to bring into this conversation, jacob, who is that. glenn: jake is our analyst. who is generations younger than peter. and one of our earliest employees never be the guy who got the assignment to work on this in the beginning. in a project essentially you have one sort of person who is the keeper of the records and does the sort of close-up management of the information. summa project leader such as my cell, morsi imprisoned that an
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analyst he manages thanks day today. that is jake and so he had became a walking encyclopedia of information about traffic in russia read. peter: this is the conclusion of crime in process. both ample evidence, master of the past three years, the show of the trump campaign in the russian government eagerly sought to work together to swing of the 2016 election and that basic see, the trump campaign conspires sing with russia may not be a crime provable in federal court, but it amounts to one of the most significant betrayals in american history. glenn: i believe that today i also feel that, so when we wrote that it was the summer of 2019. we had no inkling that the president was out there engaging with product that was almost exactly the same as what we were saying he had done 2016. so the proof of that observation
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is really today with the impeachment proceedings where he, went out and did the exact same thing. it is hard to deny that he is able to do this. peter: glenn simpson and peter fritz are the cofounder of the co-authors of this book, find progress inside of the steele dossier and the investigation of donald trump. fusion gps co-founder. glenn: thank you very much. [inaudible]. ♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪ ♪♪
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♪ ♪♪ >> former republican speaker of the house, jon maynard discussed his time in congress to turn his thoughts in the future of the public publican party. >> i didn't really want to write a book, i don't like books . but it really felt had a . interesting life in a very interesting career. i grew up in cincinnati 911 brothers and sisters my dad was bar. and there were a lot of things that work lessons that i learned growing up in lessons that i needed to learn to speak . broken a big family coming along with with people and get things done together as a family grow up in a bar, mo party did dishes waited tables intended parked parked. you learn a few lessons there as well. and you have to learn the lesson
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of being able to disagree without being disagreeable. and want to argue with the guy at the end of the bar they don't necessarily want them to think that you are agreeing with him either. so the second lesson is yet to learn to deal with every jack - the walked in the door. in all of the shows i grew up with the top me to do my job is speaker of the house. i never in my wildest dreams ever thought that i would be in public policies and i worked my way through high school and college and along the way, the business and ended up owning this small company that turned out to be rather successful and enjoyed our homeowners association in the late 70s and the president of the homeowners association 1980. and i suggested we have a take a more active roll in our community, not just in our own
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neighborhood and so we've had conversations about maynard's good idea, go ahead. and i ended up running about a year later. and i did that for three years before i started six years and the house. all this time considering the roll of my business. in 1990, i got into a race for congress, and i was willing to walk away from my business but to try to make this job. i got elected to congress and served nearly 25 years in the u.s. congress. it was a great experience. any general assembly steakhouse, the congress itself. you have a lot of people and a lot of personalities. given my background it and big family going up at a bar, stuff like home. [inaudible].
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and over the years i made friends on both sides of the aisle. almost with everybody who served. that people after congress and republicans for 36 years, became obvious to me that was never really a effort or belief that can never be a majority. but i and somebody younger and my colleagues knew her colleagues, along with a few more season to colleagues, began to believe that we could be up majority. in 1994, the contracts of america, newt gingrich and our leader at the time we begin the first republican majority in 40 years in the u.s. congress. and so at that point is never for later in the house. and served there for four years, i got vents out of leadership because people thought it was too close to gingrich.
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but the chairman of the workforce committee, and one of the most compelling jobs i think ahead. five years on the chairman of this committee. [inaudible]. we dealt with education policies and workforce policies and became successful and working with both by democratic dent can parse and senate, senator ted kennedy. press used to call us the political book candace rated vote when i came to no child left behind and a lot of other policies efforts ted kennedy and i worked out almost anything. he was liberal and i was conservative. we both want to get things done behalf of the country. and in 2006 and became a majority leader. we lost the majority again in 2006. i became the minority leader in 2007 grade and did that job for four years and two of those
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years with george bush was president and two of those years was barack obama as president. and in 2010 when republicans took back the majority, i was elected speaker. never five years of the speaker, i have my challenges. in a way to moderates and 45 or 250 republicans. 250. [inaudible]. there will be two or three dozen it of my republican colleagues knuckleheads as i call them, who wanted all or nothing. they wanted all their way or no way at all. what frustrated me to no end. in a detail this in my book, the challenges of the 2011, grand bargaining with president obama that went down the drain. and also with immigrations. in the fact that the member of the united states senate wasn't even a member of the republican


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