Washington lobbyist Tony Podesta leaves lobbying firm

Randolph Lopez
October 31, 2017

Tony Podesta, who founded the left-leaning Podesta Group in 1988, stepped down from his position with the firm on Monday morning, an employee told NBC News. News also reported Podesta was stepping down. The indictment alleged that the Podesta Group and Mercury LLC knew that this was not the case and that they were working for the Yanukovych government with Manafort and Gates as intermediaries. Manafort was indicted on money laundering and tax evasion charges on Monday.

Tony Podesta, founder of the Podesta Group and brother of Hillary Clinton's former campaign chair, John Podesta, will reportedly resign from his lobbying firm in the wake of special counsel Robert Mueller's charges against President Donald Trump's one-time campaign manager, Paul Manafort.

Later in the day, Podesta announced his resignation at a staff meeting at the Podesta Group's Washington headquarters.

A person familiar with the announcement said a new firm with a new name will be formed in the hope of salvaging clients.

Podesta reportedly failed to disclose lobbying activity for a Ukrainian nonprofit that took place from 2012 to 2014. The Party of Regions is a pro-Russia Ukrainian political party whose leader, Yanukovych, served as president from 2010 to 2014.

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PG says it fully disclosed its representation of ECFMU and complied with FARA filing regulations five years ago within weeks of starting its work. The Podesta Group's work for ECFMU, a non profit think tank, was in support of Ukraine's admission to the European Union, a position supported by foreign policy experts at the time. "The ECFMU provided formal certification that it was neither funded by nor directed by a government or political party". Podesta didn't immediately respond to phone calls and emails seeking comment.

PG had represented the European Centre for a Modern Ukraine in a PR push that was organized by Manafort.

"Company A and Company B were paid for their services not by their nominal client, the Centre, but exclusively through offshore accounts associated with Manafort-Gates", the indictment stated, according to The Washington Post.

Podesta and Mercury came into focus for prosecutors as they delved deeply in to Manafort's finances earlier this year.

Other reports by GlobalViralNews

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