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Tony Podesta Resignation Follows String of Foreign Lobbying Disclosure Violations

Tony Podesta Resignation Follows String of Foreign Lobbying Disclosure Violations

Podesta, brother of former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's campaign Chairman John Podesta, resigned from the firm on Monday following Manafort's indictment by a grand jury. He shared an article from that time in which Trump is quoted calling for Russian Federation to "find the 30,000 emails that are missing" from Clinton's personal email server.

Flying a bit under the radar given the indictments of Trump campaign staffers, Special Counsel Robert Mueller has reportedly been closing in on Democratic lobbyist Tony Podesta.

Two lobbying firms, the Podesta Group and Mercury Public Affairs, are the unnamed companies in the grand jury indictment of Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his deputy Rick Gates, three sources with knowledge of the investigation told NBC News.

On Tuesday, Trump tweeted, "The biggest story yesterday, the one that has the Dems in a dither, is Podesta running from his firm". What he know about Crooked Dems is. He and his brother could Drain The Swamp, which would be yet another campaign promise fulfilled.

"If you want something done in Washington, DC, you go to Tony Podesta", his bio page on the Podesta Group website says. However, Manafort and Gates both roundly acknowledged that they were in Yanukovych's employ, as did several Podesta employees. Charges ranged from conspiracy against the United States to failure to file reports of foreign banks and financial accounts.

Manafort used the Podesta Group and Mercury as part of a two-pronged strategy he was pursuing as a consultant for the Ukrainian Party of Regions, which was the ruling party during the tenure of ousted Russian-backed Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.

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"At the direction of Manafort and Gates, Company A and Company B engaged in extensive lobbying", according to the indictment. But last week, the White House enjoyed a shift in focus, amid new revelations in the controversial Obama-era Uranium One deal and the payments behind the salacious anti-Trump dossier.

The Mueller investigation has taken a toll on the Podesta Group.

About a half dozen of its clients have cut ties with the firm this year. According to Politico, the firm recently lost some clients, and brought in $4.8 million in the third quarter of 2017, down from $6.1 million in the third quarter of 2016.

Molly Levinson, a spokeswoman for the Podesta Group, said the firm's work was "in support of Ukraine's admission into the [European Union]", and the Brussels nonprofit had certified that "it was neither funded by nor directed by a government or political party". "Podesta may pursue legal action, including for damages in order to fully protect his rights, '" Carlson said.

The Podesta Group, along with Manafort's firm, were tasked with leading an PR effort on behalf of a group called the European Centre for a Modern Ukraine.