What was that about a “sewer” again?


President Trump’s nominee to lead the Justice Department’s criminal division, Brian A. Benczkowski, said on Tuesday that he helped Russia’s Alfa Bank investigate whether its computer servers contacted the Trump Organization.

Mr. Benczkowski had told the Senate Judiciary Committee last week that he represented Alfa Bank, which is one of Russia’s largest financial institutions and whose owners have ties to President Vladimir V. Putin.

On Tuesday, as Mr. Benczkowski came before the panel for his confirmation hearing, he acknowledged that his work for Alfa Bank directly touched on suspicions related to the bank in connection with the Trump-Russia affair.

Oh. Oh really. Well that seems fine – no possibility of conflict of interest there, right?

Mr. Benczkowski said he had agreed to help his law firm, Kirkland & Ellis, represent Alfa Bank amid the intense scrutiny of the Trump-Russia investigation knowing that he might be nominated for a job in the Trump administration, a disclosure that prompted incredulity from several Democrats.

That “seems to me an odd, inexplicable decision by you in light of all the suspicions and all the investigations underway,” said Senator Richard Durbin, Democrat of Illinois.

He explained it.

Mr. Benczkowski said that he accepted a law firm partner’s request in March that he help represent Alfa Bank in part because he understood that suspicions about illicit contacts with the Trump Organization were “inaccurate,” noting also that it was not certain at the time that the administration would offer him any job.

Cool cool cool, that’s all taken care of then.

2 Responses to “What was that about a “sewer” again?”