Paul Bondar apartment owned by Russian pop star linked to Putin, record show


A condominium rented by the Texas millionaire trying to get Rep. Tom Cole is owned by the family of a Russian pop star with ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin, documents obtained from the Oklahoman show. The revelation comes as many right-wing Republicans criticize Cole for his support of the Ukrainian government’s efforts to combat the Russian invasion.

Information on the Bondar Insurance Group website lists an office in Hallandale Beach, Florida, at 1945 S Ocean Drive, unit 12. That apartment is rented by Paul Bondar and his wife, Jennifer. Bondar is the Texas millionaire who wants to dethrone Cole.

Records from the Broward County assessor’s office show the Florida condo is owned by Muza Marin Inc. The company’s registered agent is Lioudmila Issakovitch. Issakovitch and her husband, Valerii Leontiev, are Russian pop stars with close ties to Putin.

Bondar’s campaign said Bondar has no connection to Issakovitch or Leontiev. “There is no business connection,” campaign spokeswoman Lisa Liebl said. ‘Mr and Mrs Bondar have no business relationship with the people of Russia and have not even heard of them. They don’t know these people.’

Liebl said the business partner of Bondar’s who used the Florida location has since left the apartment and moved to another location. She said the Bondars have a contractor/business partner in a development project, 1212 Atlantic Properties LLC.

“The business associate rented (lives and works) from 1945 S Ocean Drive, hence this is the address listed for the LLC. However, they are renting an office space in the same building, which is number C12 listed on their website,” said Libel. “The contractor no longer lives in unit no. 1212 and moved to another unit last year.”

Leontiev has received numerous awards from Putin

Lioudmila Issakovitch and Valerii Leontiev, whose first names are often spelled differently, recently received the Order of Friendship from Russian President Putin. Leontiev has received several awards from Putin, including the Order of the Fatherland in 2022.

In 2020, the New York Daily News reported that Leontiev – described by the newspaper as “a shaggy-haired Russian pop crooner” – once sang a duet with Putin and is one of the few recipients of the Kremlin’s highest civilian honor. Leontiev performed at a Trump-branded property in Florida on New Year’s Eve in 2020.

Bondar’s campaign was largely self-financed

Bondar’s television advertisement has criticized Cole for supporting Ukraine in its fight against Russia. “Congressman Tom Cole voted to send over $160 billion to Ukraine. Paul Bondar is against new spending on Ukraine and wants to spend the money to close the southern border,” according to Bondar’s television advertisement.

Bondar has launched a largely self-financed campaign against Cole. While Federal Election Commission data shows that Bondar raised only about $30,000 for the first reporting period, other data from the FEC and the Federal Communication Commission show that Bondar spent more than $3.3 million on television advertising in Oklahoma City; Ada; and Wichita Falls, Texas, media markets.

Bondar told the political news service Roll Call that even if he was defeated in this race, he would be back.

“Regardless of this outcome, I will be running a re-election campaign in 2026,” Bondar said in the Roll Call interview. “Tom is 75 years old. I think people will quickly understand that at some point, very soon or not far away, I will be the next member of Congress from this district, based on my level of involvement in this state.”

Cole, unlike others in his party, is a staunch supporter of supporting military aid to Ukraine and has long supported Ukrainian efforts to stop the Russian military.

Cole: Primarily like a bar fight

Cole told Roll Call that the primary was similar “to an old-fashioned bar fight.”

“The man who wins a bar fight is not the man with the most money, but the man with the most friends. And I have a lot of friends in that district,” Cole told Roll Call.

Bondar, following the lead of the Republican Party’s far-right wing, has opposed aid to Ukraine, saying the money should be spent on increased border security.

Florida records show the property is home to numerous corporations and limited liability companies.

For example, Jennifer Bondar is registered as the manager of 1212 Atlantic Properties LLC, whose primary address is 1945 S. Ocean Dr. Unit No. 1212 Hallandale Beach, FL 33009. 1212 Atlantic Properties LLC was founded in 2022.

In addition, there are at least six other limited liability companies registered at the same address as Bondar Insurance Group and 1212 Atlantic Properties.

Bondar, a self-proclaimed patriot and family man from Texas, announced earlier this year that he was seeking the nomination for Oklahoma’s 4th Congressional District seat. Bondar said he now lives in Oklahoma. Bondar, who grew up in Wisconsin, spent his adult life in Illinois. He owned Bondar Insurance Group in Oak Brook, Illinois, and moved to Texas in 2020.

Records show Bondar has a Texas driver’s license and did not vote in a Texas election until March 5. His transition to Oklahoma has been swift and appears to parallel the 2024 election cycle.

Bondar was not listed as a registered voter in Oklahoma until April 3. His Oklahoma voter registration is listed in Pontotoc County. On April 4, Bondar filed a declaration of candidacy with the Oklahoma Election Board, listing the state’s fourth Congressional District seat. A day later, on April 5, Bondar received an Oklahoma driver’s license.