Bush administration deputy assistant secretary David Merkel is trying to get back into the State Department in the Trump administration, Big League Politics has confirmed with multiple high-ranking administration sources.
“Very interesting intro,” Merkel said to me when Big League Politics contacted him to inquire about his angling for the State Department job. “I really don’t have anything to do with the dossier. I don’t have anything to say.”
David Merkel is the husband of Claire Sechler Merkel, the McCain Institute’s senior director of Arizona programs and a former Cindy McCain chief of staff and John McCain presidential campaign staffer. David Merkel has worked directly with David Kramer, the McCain Institute senior fellow who passed on the debunked Christopher Steele dossier during the “Operation Crossfire Hurricane” plot against President Donald Trump. (READ: Jennifer Rubin Quotes Kramer, Who Passed On The Debunked Dossier).
It turns out that David Merkel and David Kramer actually worked together to get Obama’s Russia ambassador Mike McFaul confirmed, before McFaul was photographed sitting directly in front of Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Russian set-up agent in the Don Jr. Trump Tower meeting who coordinated with Fusion GPS head Glenn Simpson. (READ: Mueller Did NOT Interview Spy Natalia, As New York Prosecutors Charged Her to Keep Her OUT Of the Country).
Merkel and Kramer spoke at the McCain Institute’s September 2018 Tbilisi International Conference, according to McCain Institute literature. The pair also spoke at the same Halifax International Security Forum in 2013 and worked together for the Freedom House on the 2011 project “Democratic Change In Belarus: A Framework For Action.”
Merkel and Kramer joined together in writing a letter to John Kerry and Richard Lugar of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to strongly support then-President Barack Obama’s nomination of Mike McFaul to become Russian ambassador during Obama’s “Russia reset.”
Josh Rogin reported for Foreign Policy in 2011: “We have known and worked closely with Mike for many years and have the highest regard for his professionalism and his dedication to American interests and ideals. He is one of America’s leading experts on democracy and has been a tireless promoter of democracy in Russia and elsewhere around the world,” wrote former Undersecretary of Defense Eric Edelman, former Assistant Secretaries of State David Merkel and Stephen Rademaker, former NSC Director Jamie Fly, Freedom House President David Kramer, former Rumsfeld and McCain advisor Randy Scheunemann, and the Brookings Institution fellow Robert Kagan. McFaul, who is a key architect of the Obama “reset” policy with Russia that many conservatives dislike, also has a long track record of advocating for democracy and human rights and is well positioned to press those issues in Moscow, the former officials wrote.
“His nomination has been enthusiastically supported by leading figures in the Russian political opposition. His presence there will provide a strong voice for democracy and freedom in that country and provide an open door and sympathetic ear to all elements of Russian society.'”
Foreign Policy passage ends
McFaul was confirmed, and Natalia Veselnitskaya, who set up Don Jr. in Trump Tower in between dinner meetings with Fusion GPS head Glenn Simpson, sat directly behind McFaul at a Russia-themed congressional hearing in 2016.
Merkel also joined with Kramer in writing a letter to then-President Obama in 2014 urging Obama to “confront Turkey on its poor human rights record.”
Merkel came out strong against President Trump’s lifting of sanctions on Russian companies.
Merkel was Konstantin Kilimnik’s boss at the International Republican Institute, according to the New York Times. Kilimnik, identified as a foreign partner of Paul Manafort and also linked to Fusion GPS spy Natalia Veselnitskaya, was charged by Robert Mueller for witness coercion in the Manafort case — one of numerous meaningless indictments Mueller issued against Russian nationals. Merkel also helped arrange for a Kilimnik job interview at a Russian-British oil project. Merkel is also friends with disgraced pro-Kremlin Latvian politician Nils Usakovs.
Merkel has also gained scrutiny for his friendship with former Lindsey Graham and John McCain aide Christian Ferry, a onetime Davis Manafort consultant. Merkel sits on the board of trustees at Nazarbayev University in Kazakhstan, according to his bio at the George Soros-funded Atlantic Council, where is a senior fellow. Cindy McCain has shared a photograph of Merkel holding court with her team.
Flashback: Ann Coulter Warns Steve Bannon about Donald Trump’s Hires During 2016
Coulter tells it like it is.
Earlier this week, former White House adviser Steve Bannon reached out to President Donald Trump, in an apparent move to reconcile with the president. Bannon was one of the more renowned advisors in the Trump administration who received a lot of attention for his unconventional views. The former White House adviser is likely looking for Trump to pardon him for several federal criminal charges that he is currently facing.
Bannon was one of the strongest contrarian voices on the right who questioned traditional conservative dogma on free trade and immigration. His rise to prominence represented a raw, populist anger that was building within the Republican Party base. Bannon ended up leaving the Trump administration after the infamous Charlottesville rally. This left a massive void for populist voices within the Trump brain trust, which was never adequately filled with populist figures.
Most of the strong populist voices during the Trump era came from the outside. Conservative commentator Ann Coulter has been one of the leading figures trying to steer populist discourse in America.Although a harsh critic, Coulter did her best to hold President Trump accountable and watch his every move, especially personnel decisions that did not align with his America first vision. To the average pro-Trump individual, Coulter’s criticism may come off as abrasive, but it was and still is necessary to have a viable nationalist movement.
As a reminder to her followers about how she knew that there were subversive elements in the Trump administration who wanted to gut the president’s America First agenda and pursue more traditional Republican policies, she tweeted about email correspondence she had with Bannon dating back to December 2, 2016. In light of the rapprochement between Bannon and Trump, Coulter called attention to how she warned the former White House adviser about some of the latter’s questionable staffing decisions during the early stages of his presidency.
Coulter tweeted, “No, actually, I knew Trump was betraying us pretty early on – and that it would cost him re-election. My December 2, 2016 email to Steve Bannon:”
No, actually, I knew Trump was betraying us pretty early on – and that it would cost him re-election.
My December 2, 2016 email to Steve Bannon: pic.twitter.com/38hGPNUqqN
— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) January 14, 2021
In an email sent on December 2, 2016 with a subject line titled “ghost of christmas future”, Coulter warned then-White House adviser Bannon about some of Trump’s hiring decisions.
She first noted that “the fact that Trump is even CONSIDERING rep. Mccaul (rubio in the house) for homeland — and is NOT considering kobach— tells me we’re not getting any major deportations, no removal of refugees, no e-verify, no end to end anchor babies… and trump will be dead.
also, “mad dog” isn’t going to build a wall.”
She was referring to Texas Congressman Michael McCaul, a known mass migration booster and a potential nominee for the head of the Department of Homeland Security. United States Marine Corps General James Matthis would be Trump’s first Secretary of Defense, who ended up turning out to be a Deep State hack. On the other hand, Kris Kobach is a nationally recognized immigration hawk, who gained fame for implementing some of the stiffest voter ID standards in the nation during his time as Secretary of State.
The Trump administration was successful in implementing several administrative changes that limited immigration and also did not get involved in any nation-building engagements like previous administrations.
Nevertheless, Coulter’s incisive suggestions still have use for future Republican administrations. The new GOP should follow Coulter’s pro-migration restriction suggestions if it wants to not only remain politically relevant, but also protect the integrity of America’s political system.
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