Tad Devine was the top strategist for the 2016 presidential campaign of Senator Bernie Sanders. Thursday it was announced that he will assist in the special counsel office’s prosecution of Paul Manafort, Donald Trump’s campaign chairman for five months in 2016.
Court filings have shown that Devine participated in Manafort’s work in Ukraine, earning $10,000 per day.
“ Sanders 2016 chief campaign strategist TAD DEVINE [longtime associate of Manafort, Gates, & Russian GRU-linked Kilimnik] says he’s “assisting special counsel’s prosecution of Paul Manafort.”
*cooperating to avoid prosecution*”
Bernie Sanders 2016 chief campaign strategist TAD DEVINE [longtime associate of Manafort, Gates, & Russian GRU-linked Kilimnik] says he's "assisting special counsel’s prosecution of Paul Manafort."
*cooperating to avoid prosecution*
by @rubycramer #Maddow https://t.co/m9Gqc8goxk pic.twitter.com/YUBOey63TU
— Polly Sigh (@dcpoll) July 27, 2018
According to a statement released on Thursday by Julian Mulvey, a partner at Devine’s political firm, Devine Mulvey Longabaugh:
“The Special Counsel has asked Tad Devine to assist in the prosecution of their case against Paul Manafort regarding his firm’s work on media consulting on past political campaigns in Ukraine.”
“When the Special Counsel sought assistance from us in its ongoing investigation, we readily provided it.”
The statement went on to say that the high-profile political consulting firm “has been assured by the special counsel’s office that we have no legal exposure and did not act unlawfully.”
Devine’s role in the Manafort prosecution and trial was first reported last week in a court filing which included documents provided by Devine.
The reason that Devine has been asked by Mueller’s team to participate in the Manafort trial is that Devine worked in Ukraine with Manafort on behalf of Viktor Yanukovych, the former pro-Russia president of Ukraine who is a close associate of Vladimir Putin.
The court filing said that Devine’s emails and other documents could be presented to the jury as evidence in the case against Manafort.
The documents made public include emails between Manafort and Devine, along with other documents such as drafts of speeches, talking points for meetings, memos on strategy, and drafts of television ads.
The correspondence also provides previously unknown details of the compensation received by Manafort and his associates, as well as the kind of lucrative work Devine and others did for the Ukrainian friends of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
In one of the first exhibits that appears in the Thursday filing is a copy of an email Devine sent to Manafort attaching a draft of Yanukovych’s victory speech in 2010.
Another exhibit provides an email from Manafort associate Rick Gates to Devine, discussing a trip that Devine would take to Kiev, Ukraine to help with Manafort’s and Gates’s work for Yanukovych. After Gates email, Devine responded that his “rate for something like this would be $10,000/day, including travel days.”
Last year, the New York Times reported that Devine quit his work in Ukraine in 2012, and had started in 2008.
In the statement on Thursday evening, Devine’s business partner Mulvey said, “After the administration of the presidential candidate we had worked for arrested his political opponent, we quit. We then declined additional offers to work on his later campaigns.”
There is no implication that Devine did anything wrong, but it shows that he was merely a “hired gun” who would work for the politicians who would pay him the most money, regardless of their morality or political philosophy.
This new development also indirectly involves Bernie Sanders in the special counsel’s probe concerning Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election.