Thursday, October 26, 2017

Original DNC #MeToo Dindus Also Disavow Trump Russia "Dossier"

thehill |  Current and past leaders of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) say they had no knowledge that the national party was helping to fund a dossier compiled by a British spy that contained scandalous accusations about President Trump.

The Washington Post reported Tuesday that Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the DNC paid millions to the law firm Perkins Coie, where Democratic lawyer Marc Elias worked with the opposition research firm Fusion GPS to construct the memo, which was compiled by British spy Christopher Steele.

The memo is at the center of several investigations into Russian meddling and it may have been used by the FBI as part of its investigation into allegations that Trump campaign officials had improper contacts with Russian officials. Former FBI Director James Comey has said none of the allegations in the memo have been verified.

The bombshell Washington Post report has emboldened President Trump, who on Wednesday lashed out at the “fake dossier” and described it as the cornerstone of “the whole Russia hoax.” 

yahoo |  Elias — after consulting with senior officials at the Clinton campaign and the DNC — approved the retention. At some point that spring, Fusion GPS retained a former British intelligence officer, Christopher Steele. Steele paid for information from Russian sources who reported allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Putin government. His reports on these allegations — which he has since described as “raw intelligence” — formed the basis for the dossier.

But how much senior officials at the Clinton campaign and the DNC were informed about the work being done by Fusion GPS and the contents of the dossier is unclear. Donna Brazile, who became the DNC chair after Fusion GPS was hired but served the entire time the dossier was being assembled and while some of its contents shared with journalists, told Yahoo News Wednesday that at one point she requested the names of every consultant working for the committee — and she was never told by Perkins Cole about the work being done by Fusion GPS. “I knew nothing about it,” she said. (The Clinton campaign did not respond to inquiries about the matter Wednesday. A lawyer for Fusion GPS declined comment. )

“The clients were aware and approved the retention of outside research firms,” said a lawyer representing Perkins Cole who asked not to be identified. “They did not know which research firms had been engaged. … There was no reason to tell them.” The lawyer added that the material being investigated was “sensitive” and “you don’t want hundreds of people working on the campaign to be in the loop on it.”