Should Donald Trump resign the presidency if the allegations that he worked with the Russian government for intelligence on his opponents and help with the 2016 presidential bid turn out to be correct? You can take the poll below and have your say on the matter.
There had been long-standing rumors and whispers that Trump may have been hiding ties to the Russian government, but those allegations were laid bare on Tuesday with a bombshell report compiled by a British intelligence official. The report — which has not been substantiated but has now been leaked in full through the media — was originally compiled at the request of Trump’s opponents and allegedly shows deep ties to the Russian government.
As the New York Times noted, the report claimed that the effort to cultivate Trump as a political candidate stretched back years.
“The memos suggest that for many years, the Russian government of Mr. Putin has looked for ways to influence Mr. Trump, who has traveled repeatedly to Moscow to investigate real estate deals or to oversee the Miss Universe competition, which he owned for several years. Mr. Trump never completed any major deals in Russia, though he discussed them for years.”
The most salacious claim in the dossier is that Donald Trump held a bizarre sex party in a Russian hotel, paying prostitutes to urinate in a bed where Barack and Michelle Obama had slept during a previous visit.
The report added that the former British intelligence officer who compiled the report is considered a competent figure and has deep contacts within Russia, but that the information in the report is compiled from Russian informants and not verified or vetted by American intelligence.
Trump received unsubstantiated report that Russia had damaging information about him https://t.co/XkG4cX8yey
— The New York Times (@nytimes) January 11, 2017
The contents of the report were reportedly part of an intelligence briefing given both to Trump and President Barack Obama.
— The Hill (@thehill) January 11, 2017
Donald Trump soundly denied the allegations that he colluded with Russia in the months and years leading up to the 2016 presidential election. On Wednesday, Trump called the reports “unfair” and claimed that “Russia has never tried to use leverage over me.”
Trump went a step further, CNBC noted, saying his political opponents put out the report in an attempt to “try to belittle” his victory.
“Are we living in Nazi Germany?” Trump wrote.
Trump also claimed that he had no involvement in Russia — “no deals, no loans, no nothing” — but this contradicts statements from Trump’s own son. In 2008, Donald Trump Jr. said that Trump was funded through Russian investors, saying that, “Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets,” according tothe Washington Post.
These allegations led to new calls for Donald Trump to release his income taxes, proving whether he had any personal or business involvement in Russia.
“The president-elect has spoken a number of times, including after being presented with this evidence, in flattering ways about Russia and its dictator,” said Congressman Eric Swalwell of California, a member of the House Intelligence Committee.. “Considering the evidence of Russia hacking our democracy to his benefit, the president-elect would do a service to his presidency and our country by releasing his personal and business income taxes, as well as information on any global financial holdings.”
The report has also led to a backlash against Donald Trump, including calls that he resign should the allegations turn out to be true.
Do you think Donald Trump should resign the presidency if the allegations of his involvement with Russia turn out to be correct? You can take the poll above and make your voice heard.
[Featured Image by Alex Wong/Getty Images]