Michael Hammerschlag
9 min readNov 5, 2022



Rus FM Lavrov, Trump, + Rus Amb Kislyak
Trump + his handlers

by Michael Hammerschlag

RESULTS BELOW- edited Nov 12

It was Khrushchev’s famous boast, WE WILL BURY YOU, though it may have been “We will outlive you (live to see you buried)”. Horrifically, with the extremist delusional Denier takeover of the Repub Party, Vlad Vlad may be close to succeeding.

In 1987 the KGB invited Donald Trump and Ivana to Moscow; back then that was the only way these things happened- they had first traveled to her native Czechoslovakia in 1978, where Czech secret police monitored them, sharing prospects with the KGB. They were always on the lookout for

Trump + Ivana in Leningrad 1987

amoral businessmen as sources, conduits, agents, dupes; to them Trump was a wet dream, a chatterbox gossip obsessed with revenge. While much has been made of the P-Tape, and no doubt ample compromat existed- Trump had got the Lenin Suite in the National Hotel, Mr Trump was not someone who needed 17 year old erotic goddesses or blackmail to glean his cooperation. “I love people who give me money,” he famously exclaimed, and give him money Russia certainly did- there’s a reason Deutsche Bank lent the biggest deadbeat in the world $2.5 bil, even after he defaulted multiple times and even sued them for causing his defaults! Various Rus Oligarchs bought hundreds of millions of apartments in his towers, and Deutsche Bank’s blank check was guaranteed by the Russians, who were doing huge business with the corrupt German Goliath. When he finally ran for President, he wasn’t supposed to WIN, just throw wrenches into the Election gears.

Incredibly, Putin’s Clinton hacking, FSB + GRU Facebook + SM lies, Comey’s Oct Surprise, widespread disenfranchisement, lazy reporters, and the rotten Electoral College helped their old friend WIN, to the shock of the Civilized World and the absolute delight of his handlers- the champagne flowed all night in the Kremlin. They had pulled off the greatest intelligence coup in history- getting their man elected POTUS! It was an Act of War, but little understood at the time, and never retaliated against! To destroy America, all they would really have to really do is subvert or capture our Elections, how they took over much of Eastern Europe, Afghanistan, et al. I guarantee you, Ukraine would have never allowed Donald Trump to take office, as they stopped their kleptocratic bete noire- Yanukovich… twice! BTW, the 2014 Donbas “hatred” of Ukraine was assiduously manufactured, Yanu was so unpopular even in the East that when he tried to flee into Russia near Kharkiv in Feb 2014, reportedly with billions of purloined dollars, he was stopped… twice + finally had to head South and take a boat to Russia.

I’ve been an Election official several times in different states, inc managing a Caucus- Anyone who has, knows how fragile the US Voting system is, how dependent it is on good will and fair play- why almost nobody contests Elections to the bloody conclusion- 1800 + 1876 came close- in fact Dems had tremendously good claims to victory in 2000 + 2016 Presidential, and Repubs maybe in 1960… but they don’t press the case lest they cripple Democracy. In 2000, with Bush’s brother Jeb Gov and campaign manager Sec State in Florida, 10 huge Repub irregularities in Florida- and still a dead heat, + a 550,000 vote Nat lead, Al Gore should have been the presumed winner…. had the Repub Supremes not made a ruthlessly partisan corrupt decision. But as President of the Senate, Gore refused to even entertain any challenge and dutifully certified GB2’s Election (to the everlasting delight of the Iraqis). Election officials even HAD to be members of the 2 Parties, they couldn’t be non-partisan!

In contrast, The Greatest Liar in the History of Man (31,000 when they stopped counting) proceeded to undermine, slander, and denigrate US Elections from 2015; Trump’s Sov instructions from the beginning, when the KGB whispered in his ear: Dow-nald… You could be President… a friend gave him the Demagogue Bible- a Hitler’s book of his speeches, the ONLY book we know Trump has ever read, Ivana swore. Lady Lindsey was right, Trump would break the Republican Party, but he is now on the precipice of breaking America!

AZ Finchem, NV Marchant, MI Q(uazy) Karamo

The sickness and evil of Election Denialism has now spread throughout the Repub Party, 291 “believe” it, and the ones that don’t cynically go along because it will soon give them a Tammany Hall lock on most Nat Elections: 189 are favored to win!. Most terrifying, 12 Repub Secretary of State candidates (of 27) and 3 new R- Governor candidates are DENIERS in this Election (some Govs appoint the SOS); 4–8 are leading or competitive in swing states! SOS’s administer the Elections, their charge as loyal Trumpores is to ensure Trumpers + Republicans ALWAYS WIN! To do that they want to irrevocably clog Elections, end mail-in voting, restrict + suppress Black, young, + Dem voting hours + locations, even abolish machine counting (INSANE)- in order to be able to make their side win. “If you want inaccurate results that take a long time and cost way too much taxpayer money, hand-counts are your solution,” Becker told OpenSecrets. “But if you want accurate counts, as quickly as possible, then you need machines to do it.” Causing interminable delays increases the pressure which simplifies cheating.

WaPo’s Millbank: “If the midterm elections degenerate into chaos in a couple of weeks — a very real possibility — then Nevada is poised to lead the way. Indeed, the chaos here has already begun. The Election Supervisors in 10 of the state’s 17 counties have already quit, been forced out or announced their departures. Lower-level election workers have quit in the face of consistent abuse. The state’s Elections staff has lost 8 of its 12 employees…. at least four counties have taken steps toward abandoning voting machines and running elections by paper ballot and hand counting.”

With the structural population unfairness of the Electoral College, Repub assault on Voting- 100-odd disenfranchisement laws, and the arcana of 18th Century rules that give huge power to the States, Dems are losing even the possibility of winning. Hillary won by 2.86 mil in 2016 but lost the EC in 3 states by 78,000; Joe Biden won by 7.1 mil but only won the EC by 106,000 in 3 states- that was the minimum plurality of victory in 2020, changing for the worse every day. If corrupt Deniers capture even 2–3 swing Secretary of State offices, it is likely a Dem can never win the Presidency again!

Denier NV SOS candidate Jim Marchant, organizer of the Trumpist Americas First Sec of State Coalition, gleefully admits it: “When my coalition of Secretary of State candidates around the country get elected, we’re gonna fix the whole country, and President Trump is gonna be president again in 2024…. All we have to do is influence it a little bit, and we win,” Marchant said in a September interview with Steve Bannon. “And we negate whatever ability they have to manipulate the system.” AKA legitimately win.

Denier Candidates SOS Mark Finchem, GOV Kari Lake, AG Abraham Hamadeh, SENATE Blake Masters

New swing state Arizona is ground zero for nutcakes, with the Repub Gov, SoS, Senator, and AG candidates… all Deniers- tied or slightly ahead! Even NY state has a Denier R-Gov candidate! Armed AZ vigilantes have “stood watch” over Ballot Drop Boxes, part of a pattern of intimidation! MAGA warrior DeSantis arrested 20 ex-felons who couldn’t navigate the bewildering FL Repub Legislature sabotage of a statewide Referendum returning their Voter Rights- Election officials had sent them a voting card! And after years of RW demonizing of “Nancy”, a lunatic MAGAt Denier attacked her husband at home with a hammer!

America had always been mostly free of the Conspiracy obsessions that pervade much of the World- esp the Muslim, Slavic, and Arab ones. In Russia no one would believe that as a journo, I wasn’t CIA; in fact Journo’s were so assumed to be Gov organs that the status of a foreign correspondent was one step below KGB or Embassy, in the old days, Russian Militsia would hold the rope line up for me to closed areas while they beat protesters 5 ft away! But now America is mired deep in the tar pit of lunatic beliefs, all because Individual 1 and the Right Wing Media Machine told them so. Escaping this swamp may be impossible- Agent Orange has spread his malignant lies across every corner of America; and Repub media conspirators are happy to help the Russians destroy the beacon of American Democracy. Sadly, we aren’t so Exceptional after all.

Rather than prosecute these proto-fascist miscreants as a RICO Conspiracy, AG Garland has spent enormous time and energy hunting down minor Jan 6 players, but Election Deniers should NEVER have been allowed to run, since they pledge to trash, ignore, and corrupt the Laws they swear to uphold- they are defacto criminals, if not Traitors. Every one of the Deniers may as well be Russian agents, because they want to FIX ALL ELECTIONS so they never lose, or in their words- are never “Stolen”.

And these Trump zombies may be on the eve of the culmination of their Russification of America, the corrupt Repub takeover of enough State voting machinery to sway National Elections into the indefinite future. Mike Pence and Trump’s Secret Service driver may have saved Democracy on Jan 6th, but it was just caught in an eddy, and is now back on course, hurtling towards the Falls. Once broken, Democracies don’t come back… ask Rome.

Nov 10 ADDENDUM: Well, the Red Wave died midocean, and most Deniers were denied (esp the monster Kari Lake!), but Repubs seem to be taking the House (my Nov 15 am estimate- 219)- and still some very painful losses- hard-core OH creep Vance wins (who looks just like an Ukr pal), the detestable Trumpore RonJon slimes through, Cotez-Mastio battling back happy imbecile Laxalt (the pool of uncounted Las Vegas votes is running 61:36 + Laxalt’s “lead” is down to 862 w 46k left!) if they break as last 44K, she will win by +7000! [Nov 21- 99%- Cortez by +7007 ooo, purty good!] Warnock up by 0.9%. And scmbag Marchant is down 1.4%, + glass eyed Stepford monster Kari Lake lost, thank God. Unfort Trumpore NV R won Gov + some Deniers I hadn’t tagged won: fm LA Times:

— — Alabama voters gave the position to state Rep. Wes Allen, who backed a groundless lawsuit to overturn Biden’s victory that was dismissed by the U.S. Supreme Court. In Indiana, Diego Morales, who ousted the Republican incumbent in the party primary by repeating Trump’s election lies, won the race for secretary of state by defeating Democrat Destiny Scott Wells.

Wyoming Republican Chuck Gray, a state lawmaker who also endorsed efforts to overturn the 2020 election, was running unopposed for secretary of state.

All told, half of the 22 Republicans vying to be secretaries of state have repeated Trump’s election lies. Seven endorsed his attempts to overturn the will of the people and remain in power. — -

After barely sleazing through with massive voter suppression in Florida + Georgia Gov races to take their offices in 2018, Kemp and esp DeSantis + FL Repubs won big, crushing Dems- shows how quickly culture war evil can poison a State (Huckasands won AR Gov). Course after Trump’s infection of Repubs, scarcely need more examples. His crushing repudiation (losing winnable seats all over) may delay his coming out Party, with NY Post, Fox News, Coulter, et al calling him a LOSER! Presidency or prison!


Michael Hammerschlag is a journalist whose political commentary and articles have appeared in New York Times, International Herald Tribune, Seattle Times, Providence Journal, Columbia Journalism Review, Honolulu Advertiser, Capital Times, Global Post, Yahoo, Business Insider, Outside, Modern Photography, Intellectual Capital, Media Channel; Kiev Post + Weekly, Business Ukraine, + PIK in Kiev; and Moscow News, Tribune, Guardian, + Times, Element Moscow, Novaya Gazeta (editor won Nobel) in Russia. He has produced documentaries on the Presidential campaign (covered 7) and been a TV reporter, and reported from Soviet Union/Russia from ‘91-’94 in Moscow and St. Petersburg, as the largest contiguous empire in history came crashing down, ranging from Murmansk to Kiev, Brest to Baikal. He returned to Russia, Ukraine, and Europe from 2007–2021; where he ranged from Morocco to Moscow, from Holland to Kharkiv; covering Yanukovich, Maidan Rev, Donbas War, + Zelenski.



Michael Hammerschlag

Michael Hammerschlag spent over 15 years in Russia + Ukraine from 1991 to 2021, articles in NYT, IHT, Prov Journal, Seattle Times, Yahoo, Business Insider, CJR