Saturday, July 21, 2018

Reich on the sale of America

Robert Reich

As if Trump’s disgraceful show with former KGB head Vladimir Putin and against American intelligence weren’t enough, the U.S. Treasury Department has just opened a massive loophole that will allow Russia and other foreign interests to launder unlimited amounts of undisclosed, illegal contributions into American elections.

The Treasury Department will no longer require tax-exempt organizations -- including politically active nonprofits -- to identify their financial donors to U.S. tax authorities.

Before now, such advocacy groups couldn’t use any money received from foreign sources to influence elections. To make sure they didn’t, they had to report to the IRS all donors of $5,000 or more. But starting now, they don’t have to report. So there’s no way to tell if they’re funneling foreign dollars into U.S. elections.

Why would the Treasury Department open this loophole now – when U.S. intelligence has revealed Russia’s efforts to affect the 2016 election, and when Trump has shown no interest in stopping Russia from undermining future elections? Take a guess.

Score another one for Putin and his oligarchs -- and for Trump.


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