Tony Podesta announced he would be stepping down from his lobbying firm after he was named in the special counsel’s investigation concerning Russian involvement in the 2016 election, reports Politico.
Mr. Podesta plans to hand over full control of The Podesta Group to longtime CEO Kimberley Fritts who, according to the report, will lead the launch of a new firm.
One source told Politico that Mr. Podesta, brother of former Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta, didn’t want to drag the firm through a possible legal fight. Mr. Podesta’s name was brought up in the course of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation for work the group did with Paul Manafort in Ukraine.
Mr. Manafort, former Trump campaign chairman, organized a public relations campaign for a nonprofit group called the European Centre for a Modern Ukraine, according to the report, and Mr. Podesta’s firm was paid to promote Ukraine in the United States. The Podesta Group has previously said they believed the work was unaffiliated with any political party, but that turned out not to be the case.
The news comes on the day the first round of indictments were handed down from Mr. Mueller’s investigation. Mr. Manafort and his business partner Rick Gates both turned themselves in to authorities and made their first round of court appearances Monday.