Former McCain, Graham aide hired to assist pro-Russia party in Latvia

Former McCain, Graham aide hired to assist pro-Russia party in Latvia

A former aide for both Sens. John McCainJohn Sidney McCain The 13 Republicans needed to pass gun-control legislation Biden's debate performance renews questions of health At debate, Warren and Buttigieg tap idealism of Obama, FDR MORE (R-Ariz.) and Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump takes 2020 roadshow to New Mexico Bolton exit provokes questions about Trump shift on Iran The 13 Republicans needed to pass gun-control legislation MORE (R-S.C.) is working for a pro-Russia political party in Latvia, according to BuzzFeed News.

The former aide, Christian Ferry, told BuzzFeed that he was hired by Nils Ušakovs, the mayor of Latvian capital Riga, to advise him and Ušakovs's Harmony party in the lead-up to elections in October.

Ušakovs has been mayor for nine years and his party holds the most seats in Parliament, but their perceived pro-Russia stance has made them outliers in national politics. 

Politicians in Latvia, which was once under the control of the Soviet Union, have largely been critical of Russia’s foreign policy. According to BuzzFeed, Ferry's work for the Harmony party is seen as an effort to help improve the party’s image as a pro-Russian party.

Ferry previously worked for the lobbying company owned by former Trump campaign chairman Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortDemocrats return to a battered Trump Manafort's legal team argues NY prosecution constitutes double jeopardy Clip surfaces of Paul Manafort and wife on Nickelodeon game show MORE and Rick Davis and also worked for former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, who was ousted in a 2014 popular revolution, according to BuzzFeed.

Ferry told the news outlet that he learned of the job “through a mutual friend” who was aware of his work on Latin America and that Ušakovs admired McCain and Graham.

Ušakovs has developed a position that is friendly toward the Russian government while also voicing positions that align with and support Latvia’s EU membership, BuzzFeed News reported.

Until last year, Harmony had a cooperation agreement with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s party, United Russia. Ušakovs defended Putin during the war in Ukraine, calling it necessary to developing relations with Russia, BuzzFeed reported.