On September 4, after five hours of deliberation, a federal jury in D.C. acquitted Gregory Craig of crimes related to the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA). What scant attention the news received was devoted to Craig’s involvement with Paul Manafort, the lobbyist and campaign manager for President Trump who is serving a seven-year sentence for fraud and obstruction of justice. The Craig story was much larger than foreign influence-peddling, however. It revealed how Washington works, the degradation of the liberal establishment, and the corrupting power of money.

Craig is an attorney. He is also what denizens of the nation’s capital like to call “a name.” He defended President Clinton against impeachment. He served as White House counsel for President Obama. He practiced at Williams & Connolly and, from 2010 to 2018, was partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. A man of Craig’s stature, with contacts and connections at the highest levels of government, commands authority and respect among the Beltway elite. By the time he reached his seventies, Craig had ascended to the point at which a single phone call or fair word from him was worth millions of dollars.

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