WASHINGTON -- GOP power broker Haley Barbour's lobby shop, BGR Group, represents a Russian bank that has financed a company that helped build Iran's Bushehr nuclear power plant, according to corporate documents and lobbying disclosure records. The bank is owned by a secretive oligarch, Mikhail Fridman, who has met at least twice with White House officials in the last few years, according to visitor logs.
Barbour, one of the most influential Republicans within the party, considered a bid for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination and has been speculated about as a possible vice-presidential pick. Last year, he called Iran "the number one threat to peace and stability."
It's a measure of how much political saber-rattling in Washington is tempered by the lure of lobbying dollars that his firm represents a bank that has apparently helped fund Iran's nuclear aspirations.
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