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The Wall Street Journal reports Sheldon Adelson, the billionaire casino mogul who spent over $100 million during the 2012 election, plans to establish a super PAC in support of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. Funds raised by the super PAC would also be used to back Republicans in important congressional races.

Adelson has been an omnipresent force in Republican politics for decades. In 2012, he bankrolled Newt Gingrich’s failed campaign for the Republican nomination long after Gingrich had a viable change of winning. In 2016, he supported numerous candidates before settling on Trump. Adelson is also known for buying newspapers for use as political organs, both in the United States and Israel, including in January a controversial takeover of the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

According to PoliticoAdelson’s advisors have been in discussion with GOP bigwigs including New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie; former Rand Paul campaign manager Chip Englander; Josh Holmes, who served as chief of staff for Sen. Mitch McConnell; and former executive directors of the Republican Governors Association (a crucial fundraising organ for the party) Nick Ayers and Phil Cox.

The emergence of Adelson’s PAC couldn’t be more timely — the GOP’s heaviest donors have voiced concern about giving to the two pro-Trump super PACs that already exist. Adelson, whose net worth is reported to exceed $25 billion and who Forbes ranks as the 22nd richest person in the world, could provide the name and pseudo-face necessary to get high-dollar Republicans to open their wallets for a candidacy many are reluctant to support.

Creation of the PAC should ease the qualms of Gov. Christie, who has argued for the operational benefits of running a centralized fundraising operation as opposed to a scattered array of many smaller ones. Since relinquishing his own presidential campaign, Christie, who has come forth as an ardent supporter of Trump and is leading the presumptive nominee’s White House transition team, has been a strategically key figure for the conceptual PAC, coordinating discussions between donors and consultants.

Christie also received the ticket revenue, to pay off campaign debts, from a Trump event thrown in his honor in New Jersey. Though Trump rarely sells tickets to his speeches, Christie’s loyalty and advice — and his use as an Oreo punchline — were worth it.

Adelson plans to form an all-star team of top-tier political strategists to instill a sense of confidence in the Trump campaign that hasn’t been felt by the party’s elite.

The New York Times reports Adelson, who withheld support during most of the nominating process, came out in support of Trump at a gala dinner for the World Values Network, a Jewish organization, in early May.

“Yes, I’m a Republican, he’s a Republican. He’s our nominee,” Adelson said. “Whoever the nominee would turn out to be, any one of the 17 – he was one of the 17. He won fair and square.”

The Times reports that during a meeting with Trump the following week, Adelson pledged at least $100 million in support of Trump’s campaign.

Later, in an op-ed penned for the Washington Post, Adelson wrote: “I am endorsing Trump’s bid for president and strongly encourage my fellow Republicans — especially our Republican elected officials, party loyalists and operatives, and those who provide important financial backing — to do the same.”

The Associated Press reports Adelson also wrote an email to 50 Jewish Republican leaders asking for their support on behalf of Trump. Adelson wrote that a meeting with Trump left him “specifically convinced [Trump] will be a tremendous president when it comes to the safety and security of Israel.”

Trump’s schismatic language, such as comments about of banning Muslim immigrants, irked many members of the Republican Jewish Coalition, which includes many top GOP donors who backed other candidates during the primaries.

“Like many of you,” Adelson wrote, “I do not agree with him on every issue. However, I will not sit idly by and let Hillary Clinton become the next president. The consequences to our country, and Israel, are far too great to take that risk.”

In his endorsement, Adelson referenced the “tooth and nail” fight Republicans have waged against the Obama administration for nearly a decade. “We waged battles over debt, government spending, Obamacare and the Iran nuclear deal,” he wrote, noting the “paramount importance” of Obama having lifted sanctions on Iran.

“The alternative to Trump being sworn in as the nation’s 45th president is frightening.”

“If Republicans do not come together in support of Trump, Obama will essentially be granted something the Constitution does not allow – a third term in the name of Hillary Clinton.”

Although Clinton’s support for Israel has proven steadfast over the years, apparently her stated allegiance to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu isn’t enough to ease Adelson’s concerns that a Clinton presidency would be “Obama Part III,” which — as is reflected in Adelson’s Post editorial — extends beyond U.S. relations with Israel.

The once-solid alliance between Israel and the United States has indeed faltered under the Obama administration: Obama and Netanyahu aren’t on friendly terms, to say the least, and Obama’s less-that-total support for Israel in that country’s century old conflict with neighboring Palestine led to charges of abandonment last year from Michael Oren, former Israeli ambassador to Washington.

Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney made similar comments during his run for the presidency in 2012, backed with $100 million of Adelson’s money.

On Tuesday The Jerusalem Post reported senior Israeli government officials, worried Obama will try to pass a UN Security Council resolution during his final days in office, have actually reached out to advisors of Clinton and Trump to begin lobbying against U.S. involvement in an international peace effort.

Trump has voiced neutrality on the issue. He claims his experience as a businessman proves his qualification to broker a peace deal between the two nations.

During an interview with The Associated Press in December, Trump said, “A lot will have to do with Israel and whether or not Israel wants to make the deal — whether or not Israel’s willing to sacrifice certain things. They may not be, and I understand that, and I’m OK with that. But then you’re just not going to have a deal.”

In March, Clinton denounced Trump’s unbiased approach during a speech given to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

“America can’t ever be neutral when it comes to Israel’s security or survival,” Clinton said. “We can’t be neutral when rockets rain down on residential neighborhoods, when civilians are stabbed in the street, when suicide bombers target the innocent. Some thing’s aren’t negotiable.”

On this issue, high-ranking GOP officials, and many in the Republican Jewish Coalition, agree with the former Secretary of State. Speaking to Jerusalem Post, a senior Republican aide said, “When leadership talks, and they’re discussing whether or not to endorse [Trump], one of the first things they go back to is: ‘I’m not neutral when it comes to Israel and the Palestinians.”

Sheldon Adelson wants to send Trump on a trip to Israel before the GOP convention, which begins July 18.

Photo: Gambling giant Las Vegas Sands Corp’s Chief Executive Sheldon Adelson speaks during an inteview with Reuters in Macau, China, December 18, 2015. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

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  • 1.Why did Trump choose to hide certain specific files and not others at Mar-a-Lago? What were the criteria that Trump used to keep some files concealed and not others? Who selected those files? Did Trump consult or direct anyone in his selection of secret files? Trump was notorious for being too impatient to read his briefing papers, even after they had been drastically shortened and simplified. Is there the slightest evidence that he spirited these papers away so that he could consult or study them? Who besides Trump knew of the presence of the files he had concealed at Mar-a-Lago?
  • 2. Mar-a-Lago has an infamous reputation for being open to penetration even by foreign spies. In 2019, the FBI arrested a Chinese woman who had entered the property with electronic devices. She was convicted of trespassing, lying to the Secret Service, and sentenced and served eight-months in a federal prison, before being deported to China. Have other individuals with possible links to foreign intelligence operations been present at Mar-a-Lago?
  • 3. Did members of Trump's Secret Service detail have knowledge of his secret storage of the files at Mar-a-Lago? What was the relationship of the Secret Service detail to the FBI? Did the Secret Service, or any agent, disclose information about the files to the FBI?
  • 4. Trump's designated representatives to the National Archives are Kash Patel and John Solomon, co-conspirators in the investigations into Russian interference in the presidential election of 2016, the Ukraine missiles-for-political dirt scandal that led to the first impeachment in 2019, and the coup of 2020. Neither has any professional background in handling archival materials. Patel, a die-hard Trump loyalist whose last job in the administration was as chief of staff to the Acting Secretary of Defense, was supposedly involved in Trump’s “declassification” of some files. Patel has stated, “Trump declassified whole sets of materials in anticipation of leaving government that he thought the American public should have the right to read themselves."
  • The White House counsel failed to generate the paperwork to change the classification markings, but that doesn’t mean the information wasn’t declassified.” If Pat Cipollone, the White House legal counsel, did not “generate the paperwork,” was he or anyone on his staff aware at all of the declassifications? The White House Staff Secretary Derek Lyons resigned his post in December 2020. Did his successor, who held the position for a month, while Trump was consumed with plotting his coup, ever review the material found in Trump’s concealed files for declassification? Or did Patel review the material? Can Patel name any individual who properly reviewed the supposed declassification?
  • 5. Why did Trump keep his pardon of Roger Stone among his secret files? Was it somehow to maintain leverage over Stone? What would that leverage be? Would it involve Stone's role as a conduit with the Proud Boys and Oath Keepers during the coup? Or is there another pardon in Trump’s files for Stone, a secret pardon for his activities in the January 6th insurrection? Because of the sweeping nature of the pardon clause, pardons can remain undisclosed (until needed). Pardons are self-executing, require no justification and are not subject to court review beyond the fact of their timely execution. In other words, a court may verify the pardon was valid in time but has no power to review appropriateness. A pardon could even be oral but would need to be verifiable by a witness. Do the files contain secret pardons for Trump himself, members of his family, members of the Congress, and other co-conspirators?
  • 6.Was the FBI warrant obtained to block the imminent circulation or sale of information in the files to foreign powers? Does the affidavit of the informant at Mar-a-Lago, which has not been released, provide information about Trump’s monetization that required urgency in executing the warrant? Did Trump monetize information in any of the files? How? With whom? Any foreign power or entity? Was the Saudi payment from its sovereign wealth fund for the LIV Golf Tournament at Trump’s Bedminster Golf Club for a service that Trump rendered, an exchange of anything of value or information that was in the files? If it involved information in the files was it about nuclear programs? Was it about the nuclear program of Israel? How much exactly was the Saudi payment for the golf tournament? The Saudi sovereign wealth fund gave Jared Kushner and former Trump Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin $2 billion for their startup hedge fund, Affinity Partners. Do the Saudis regard that investment as partial payment for Trump’s transfer of nuclear information? Were Kushner or Mnuchin aware of the secret files at Mar-a-Lago?
  • 7.Did Trump destroy any of the files? If so, when? Did those files contain incriminating information? Did he destroy any files after he received the June subpoena?
  • 8.Were any of the secrets of our allies compromised? Has the U.S. government provided an inventory of breaches or potential breaches to our allies?
  • 9.Does the resort maintain a copying machine near the classified documents that Trump hid? Were any of the documents copied or scanned? Are Trump’s documents at Mar-a-Lago originals or copies? Were any copies shown or given to anyone?
  • 10.Trump’s lawyer Christina Bobb has revealed that a video surveillance system covers the places where Trump hid the files at Mar-a-Lago, and that the system is connected to a system at his other residences at the Bedminster Golf Club in New Jersey and Trump Tower in New York City. According to Bobb, Trump and members of his family observed the FBI search and seizure of his files at Mar-a-Lago, “actually able to see the whole thing” through their surveillance system. Who has that surveillance system recorded entering the rooms where the files were kept?

Kevin Bacon, right, in "The Following"

The aftermath of the August 8, 2022 search of the Mar-a-Lago club, former President Donald Trump’s Florida home, isn’t the first showdown between the FBI and a cult leader.

The Following, a 2013 Fox Pictures series, played out in similar fashion. Three seasons was enough for the producers and it’s been nine years since our introduction to Joe Carroll, English professor-novelist-serial killer, so there’s a spoiler risk -- but not enough to prevent the comparison.

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