Donald Trump reportedly wrote a personal letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin in June 2013 to invite the Russian leader to the Miss Universe Pageant held five months later in Moscow.
The typed letter, first reported by The Washington Post, has been turned over to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team of investigators looking into whether Trump or members of his inner circle colluded with Russia to interfere in U.S. elections or other crimes. Mueller’s investigators have been asking witnesses questions about the pageant and Trump’s efforts to convince Putin to attend, the report said.
At the bottom of the letter, Trump reportedly added a handwritten message saying he looked forward to seeing “beautiful” women while he was in Moscow. The report did not confirm whether the letter actually was sent or if Putin received it.
Putin didn’t attend the pageant, apparently canceling at the last minute. He did, however, send Trump a letter instead, along with a small gift. Aras Agalarov, the billionaire Russian developer with whom Trump worked on the pageant and whom he schmoozed in an attempt to build Trump Tower Moscow, told the Post in a 2016 interview that Trump “was very happy” with Putin’s overtures.
Donald Trump may have been referring to pageant contestants with his “beautiful” women comment, but regardless, it was a monumentally stupid thing to write. Among the allegations in the infamous Steele dossier, which Mueller’s team is investigating, is the claim that Russian intelligence gathered “kompromat,” or compromising material, on Trump in order to potentially blackmail him.
According to the dossier, which was compiled by former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele, agents from Russia’s FSB “compromised TRUMP through his activities in Moscow sufficiently to be able to blackmail him. According to several knowledgeable sources, his conduct in Moscow has included perverted sexual acts which have been arranged/monitored by the FSB.”
Several sources told Steele that Trump rented the presidential suite at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Moscow, where former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama had once stayed, and then hired prostitutes to perform “golden showers” on the bed where the Obamas had slept.
“The hotel was known to be under FSB control with microphones and concealed cameras in all the main rooms to record anything they wanted to,” the dossier said.
Mueller’s team also is investigating the financing of the 2013 Miss Universe Pageant, “such as who paid for what and what money was paid to whom,” CNN reported.