Former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee have been fined by the Federal Election Commission (FEC) for lying about funding the false Russian “dossier” that was used against then-presidential candidate Donald Trump in the weeks leading up to his win.
In a memo on Tuesday to Coolidge Reagan Foundation (CRF) — which initially filed an FEC complaint three years ago — the FEC said it concluded that Clinton and the DNC violated expenditure reporting rules regarding payments to the research group Fusion GPS. Clinton was fined $8,000 and the DNC was fined $105,000. The Washington Examiner was first to report the memo on Wednesday.
The DNC and the Clinton campaign paid over $1 million to the law firm Perkins Coie for information that Fusion GPS had on the dossier, which eventually led to the so-called “Russia hoax.” Both the party and campaign then concealed why they transferred the money, claiming it was for “legal advice and services.”
Despite pushback from the campaign and the DNC, which argued the “legal services” label was appropriate because the money went to Perkins Coie first, the commission determined the groups violated straight-forward election law.
“Solely for the purpose of settling this matter expeditiously and to avoid further legal costs, respondent[s] does not concede, but will not further contest the commission’s finding of probable cause to proceed,” the FEC said.
“This may well be the first time that Hillary Clinton — one of the most evidently corrupt politicians in American history — has actually been held legally accountable, and I’m proud to have forced the FEC to do their job for once,” Dan Backer, who filed the complaint for CRF, told Secrets, as reported by the Examiner. “The Coolidge Reagan Foundation proved that with pluck and grit, Americans who stand with integrity can stand up to the Clinton machine and other corrupt political elites.”
“Hillary Clinton and her cronies willfully engaged in the greatest political fraud in history — destroying our nation’s faith in the electoral process, and it’s high time they were held accountable,” he added. “I hope this is only the beginning.”
Earlier this month, Trump sued Clinton, the Democratic National Committee and a number of other individuals and entities, accusing them of attempting to rig the 2016 U.S. presidential election by fabricating a connection between his campaign and Russia.
Filed in federal court in Florida, the lawsuit alleges “Hillary Clinton and her cohorts orchestrated an unthinkable plot” which “shocks the conscience” of democracy in the United States.
“Acting in concert, the Defendants maliciously conspired to weave a false narrative that their Republican opponent, Donald J. Trump, was colluding with a hostile foreign sovereignty,” the suit claims. “Their far-reaching conspiracy was designed to cripple Trump’s bid for presidency by fabricating a scandal that would be used to trigger an unfounded federal investigation and ignite a media frenzy.”