Wednesday, 26 September, 2018

DNC, Clinton campaign paid for research that resulted in Trump dossier

House Intelligence Committee ranking Democrat Adam Schiff   Thomson Reuters House Intelligence Committee ranking Democrat Adam Schiff Thomson Reuters
Ellis Copeland | 25 October, 2017, 06:24

"To aid in its representation of the Clinton presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee, Perkins Coie retained Fusion GPS, entering into an engagement for research services that began in April 2016 and concluded before the election in early November", the source said.

Fusion GPS is then said to have employed Mr Steele, a former MI6 officer, who produced the dossier.

Reports indicate that Fusion GPS was commissioned by a third-party to conduct political opposition research on Mr. Trump in the fall of 2015, but that the party withdrew from the contract in the spring of 2016.

Even before that deal, Fusion GPS's research into Trump was funded by a rival in the Republican presidential primary election.

The dossier has become a lightning rod amid the intensifying investigations into the Trump campaign's possible connections to Russian Federation. But Republicans have said it's important to find out who paid for the opposition research as well as how heavily the FBI relied on the information in it as agents pursued their own investigations.

The Post story does not allege that the Clinton campaign or the DNC had any contact with Steele, or knowledge of what he was working on, though it does suggest these Democrats wanted dirt on Trump and Russians if some was available.

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In a statement Tuesday, a lawyer for Fusion GPS calls the subpoena from the chairman of the House intelligence committee "overly broad" and without a legitimate objective. The letter was prompted by a legal fight over a subpoena for Fusion GPS' bank records.

"It is an abuse of authority by a chairman already under an ethics investigation who supposedly recused himself from work related to Russia's involvement in the last election".

The House Intelligence Committee is now embroiled in a legal battle over records that could provide further information about who originally financed the dossier investigation. The judge in the case also extended a deadline for the bank to reply to the case from Wednesday until Friday morning.

The lawyer, William Taylor, also says the subpoena for the banking records is created to "punish President Trump's political foes while chilling future investigative research into his actions".

Buzzfeed defended publishing the salacious dossier by saying it was in the public interest, and that readers could decided for themselves if it had any validity.

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