Research that led to the infamous anti-Trump Russian dossier that tries to implicate Republican President Donald Trump in collusion with the Kremlin prior to the Presidential election was paid for by the Hillary Clinton Campaign and Democratic National Committee (DNC), according to new reports.
The identity of those who paid for the dossier has been a mystery for some time, and that it was Democrats – and a Democratic Presidential candidate – only adds fuel to the fire where it concerns the federal investigation into alleged Russian hacking of the Presidential election.
The Washington Post reported on Tuesday that the Clinton Campaign and the DNC funded a Washington-based research firm, Fusion GPS, to look into Trump-Russia connections.
Lawyer Marc Elias, from the firm Perkins Coie, was hired to represent the Clinton Campaign, and he is the one who retained Fusion GPS, which then hired author and former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele – who penned the dossier, according to anonymous sources familiar with the matter, The Washington Post reported. Steel reportedly has ties to the FBI and U.S. intelligence community.
Elias and Perkins Coie retained Fusion GPS in April 2016 and continued to fund research through October 2016 – just before the Presidential election, the Washington Post reported.
Prior to Elias and Perkins Coie retaining Fusion GPS, however, “Fusion GPS’s research into Trump was funded by an unknown Republican client during the GOP primary,” The Post reported.
Current leadership of the DNC has said it was “not involved in any decision-making regarding Fusion GPS.”
President Trump on Tuesday tweeted: “Clinton campaign & DNC paid for research that led to the anti-Trump Fake News Dossier. The victim here is the President,” quoting Fox News.
The Washington Post on Tuesday also reported:
Fusion GPS gave Steele’s reports and other research documents to Elias, the people familiar with the matter said. It is unclear how or how much of that information was shared with the campaign and the DNC and who in those organizations was aware of the roles of Fusion GPS and Steele. One person close to the matter said the campaign and the DNC were not informed by the law firm of Fusion GPS’s role.
The dossier has become a lightning rod amid the intensifying investigations into the Trump campaign’s possible connections to Russia. Some congressional Republican leaders have spent months trying to discredit Fusion GPS and Steele and tried to determine the identity of the Democrat or organization that paid for the dossier.
This all comes on the heels of recent news regarding two uranium deals that were reportedly pushed through under the Obama Administration under pressure and bribes from Russia – all while Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State, and that implicate the Clinton Foundation in the uranium bribery scandal, where the Foundation accepted millions.