On Monday, former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort was indicted on money laundering charges, bring months of speculation to an end. Manafort was ultimately swept up in independent counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election, and allegations of collusion between the Trump team and Russia. And according to someone close to him, he had a very tight relationship with the Trump family during the campaign — Paul Manafort's daughter texted about his closeness with Trump, according to a report.
It's no surprise that the two men worked in close proximity, as Manafort was brought in to effectively run Trump's entire campaign for months. In a series of tweets after the Manafort indictment was announced, Trump insisted the alleged offenses took place before Manafort joined his campaign, which is true. in the past, however, the White House has even tried to downplay Manafort's role when he was working for Trump.
Back in March, then-Press Secretary Sean Spicer claimed he played "a limited role" in the campaign. The remark earned him a fair amount of mockery and derision — Manafort was at first ostensibly brought in to handle the run-up to the Republican National Convention, but in relatively short order he supplanted previous campaign manager Corey Lewandowski. In short, Manafort was basically running the show for months, as much as anyone not named Trump could.
And, according to some text messages one of Manafort's daughters sent her sister and friends, the 68-year-old political operative and the then-presidential candidate were "perfect allies."
In one such text, Andrea Manafort Shand reportedly sent a friend a message remarking that her dad was "super tight with the Trumps."
But yea [my dad is] super tight with the Trumps. All the kids call him all the time. And him and Trump both live in Trump Tower in NYC. So it’s like a sitcom. Although — top top secret. Can’t repeat, promise? My dad isn’t getting paid for trump.
She also reportedly described them as "perfect allies for this agenda," called her father "a power hungry egomaniac," and commented "it's so weird he is my dad."
He likes the challenge. That’s why he’s doing this. It’s a game for him. He isn’t being paid. ... This is pure sport. He is a power hungry egomaniac. Yes. He is loving it. Conclusively. Him and trump are perfect allies for this agenda. It’s so weird he is my dad.
Manafort Shand also repeatedly stated, both in texts to her friends and her sister, that her father was not being paid by the Trump campaign, but rather was working for free. She also asked her friend not to share the "top secret" information, which was undone when the texts were hacked and leaked earlier this year.
Well hopefully my dad will help scale that back. That’s part of the reason he was brought on. He is refusing payment. Bc he doesn’t want to be viewed as Trump’s employee. Only having his expenses covered. He is involved purely because he wants to help the country and he thinks trump is best, so long as trump gets trained a bit. PS this is all top secret, so please do not repeat.
The elder Manafort has reportedly pleaded not guilty to the charges against him, and he faces some very dire consequences if he's ultimately convicted. In fact, he could reportedly face up to 80 years in prison, or if only convicted of one of the most serious charge against him, 20 years. At 68, either of those sentences would, in all likelihood, effectively leave him jailed for the rest of his life.
More to come...