Washington-based Russian expert Dimitri Simes, who appears to have had influence on Jared Kushner's foreign policy platform, based on the Mueller report, has made occasional appearances during the past two years – though more frequently in Russian media outlets.
The Mueller report says that during the 2016 campaign, Simes, who heads a think tank called the Center for the National Interest, prepared a "Russia Policy Memo" for Kushner.
In it, Simes described "a well-documented story of highly-questionable connections between Bill Clinton" and the Russian government. The memo was forwarded to senior Trump campaign officials, including then-Trump campaign Paul Manafort and deputy chairman Rick Gates.
Mueller's prosecutors described Simes in the report as personally having "many contacts with current and former Russian government officials," and cited his think tank's own description of itself as having "unparalleled access to Russian officials and politicians among Washington think tanks." According to the report, the center grew out of an organization founded by former President Richard Nixon.
According to the report, however, Simes had also previously advised Kushner that it was "bad optics" for the campaign to develop "hidden Russian contacts," and told Kushner to not "highlight Russia as an issue" and to handle any Russian contacts with care, according to the report.
The report also revealed that after the 2016 election, Simes was contacted by an associate working for Petr Aven, the head of Russia's biggest bank -- Alfa Bank -- to establish direct communication between the Trump administration and the Russian government. The report said he declined, saying he did not want to be seen as an intermediary between Trump world and Kremlin.
Dimitri Simes, who runs a Washington think tank, offered advice on Russia policy and even peddled rumors about the Clintons.