For three years now, Donald Trump and his Republican enablers have attempted to smear the former British Intelligence agent Christopher Steele after he compiled the report known as the “Steele dossier” on the many contacts between Trump campaign officials and Russians looking to interfere in American elections. At the heart of the dossier is the notion that Vladimir Putin and the Russian government have compromising information on Donald Trump, information that could be used to blackmail him.
Trump and his congressional sycophants have alleged that Steele had a “never Trump” bias and, with the help of Fox News, have repeatedly made the false claim that the Steele dossier was the basis of the Russia investigation. It was not. Trump has used Twitter to repeatedly call Steele “dopey,” among other smears.
Turns out that “dope” had repeated contacts with a high-ranking Trump official going back to 2007. According to a report released by the Department of Justice inspector general, not only did Christopher Steele not have a bias against the Trump family, but he had a “personal” relationship with Ivanka Trump.
ABC reports that Ivanka and Christopher Steele met at a dinner in 2007 and discussed working together in the future. Indeed, they followed through and kept in contact for years afterward, both in person and via email. According to ABC,
Ivanka Trump worked as an executive vice president at the Trump Organization, managing a range of foreign real estate projects, including in parts of the world where Steele’s firm, Orbis Business Intelligence touted expertise. She and Steele discussed services Orbis could offer to the Trump Organization regarding its planned expansion into foreign markets, according to two sources familiar with the meetings.
While Steele is a Russia expert, Orbis had a broad portfolio. No formal arrangement followed.