LAWSUIT: Clinton Broke Election Laws With Dossier Payment
The Coolidge Reagan Foundation lawsuit alleges clinton accepted foreign intel
A federal lawsuit has been filed accusing the Hillary Clinton campaign of breaking election laws when it paid British citizen Christopher Steele to gather political dirt on then-candidate Donald Trump.
The lawsuit argues that Democrats violated an admonition issued by Federal Election Commission Chairman Ellen L. Weintraub last week.
The Coolidge Reagan Foundation lawsuit claims that the Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee accepted valuable information from a foreign national, Mr. Steele, which was the Kremlin's anti-Trump smut.
The lawsuit aims to convince a federal judge to order the FEC to vote on opening a formal investigation.
An FEC complaint was filed by Coolidge Reagan in August.
According to Dan Backer the foundation’s founder, it was accepted for review, but there has been no official l commission action.
Ms. Weintraub issued her warning after Trump told ABC News he would listen to foreign information on political appointments
“Let me make something 100% clear to the American public and anyone running for public office: It is illegal for any person to solicit, accept, or receive anything of value from a foreign national in connection with a U.S. election,” said Ms. Weintraub.
“This is not a novel concept. Electoral intervention from foreign governments has been considered unacceptable since the beginnings of our nation.”
Ms. Weintraub Tweeted the statement with the headline:
“I would not have thought that I needed to say this.”
But the Coolidge Reagan Foundation argues that the Democrats did precisely that in 2016:
“The Clinton campaign, not Trump, collaborated with the Russians in a desperate, and ultimately failed, attempt to steal the election."
It then names Steele, the Clinton campaign, the DNC and Perkins Coie as respondents.
“I think Weintraub is full of hot air,” Mr. Backer told The Washington Times.
“I mean, after all, she’s very serious about Trump’s comment, but she hasn’t done anything about our complaint.”
“A provision of the federal statute prohibits me from commenting on an enforcement matter that has not been closed by the agency," An FEC spokesman said.
According to The Washington Times: A review by The Times didn’t find any Weintraub criticism of Democrats having paid Mr. Steele to collect foreign political dirt.
Perkins Coie gave acknowledgment of-of Steele’s dossier being funded by Democrats after Rep. Devin Nunes subpoenaed bank records.
Steele filed his now debunked charges against candidate Trump.
He quoted his sources from Kremlin intelligence sources, alleging Trump was a spy for Russia.
As we know, Special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation found no collusion of any sort.
Steele’s payment, amounting to $168,000, came from the Clinton campaign and DNC via Perkins Coie, directly to n research firm Fusion GPS.
The dirt was then spread among left-wing journalists and Obama officials.
“[Hillary for America] and the DNC paid Christopher Steele, a foreign national, to generate the Steele dossier, based primarily on lies and fabrications from current and former Russian government officials and other foreign nationals,” the Coolidge Reagan lawsuit alleges.
“To mask their key role in funding the dossier, HFA and the DNC funneled their payments through their law firm, Perkins Coie, and failed to properly report the purposes of those payments to the FEC as required by federal law.”
The six-member FEC has three same-party commissioners.
But there is currently four inclduing a Democrat, a Democrat-leaning independent and two Republicans. A
Mr. Backer insisted the old association wouldn't stop her from acting due to tot he fact that the form would not have handled the Steele dossier issue 17 years ago.
Ms. Weintraub was nominated to the Senate by President George W. Bush along with a Republican nominee. Senate Republican and Democratic leaders typically recommend commissioners to the White House.
The Coolidge-Reagan complaint cites what it considers three violations of election laws by the Clinton campaign.
First, the foundation alleges that the campaign, in its FEC spending reports, concealed money going to Mr. Steele. The campaign listed the funds as “legal services” to Perkins Coie.
States the complaint:
“By using Perkins Coie as a straw man intermediary for this pervasively political, non-legal work, [Hillary for America] and the DNC were able to mask their relationship to Fusion GPS from the public in the critical weeks before the 2016 presidential election, in direct violation of federal campaign finance law. This intentionally false reporting would allow HFA and the DNC to disavow any potentially embarrassing or controversial activities in which Fusion GPS engaged.”
Second, the complaint alleges that Mr. Steele, as a foreign national, was prevented by law from contributing “anything of value” to a campaign.
The foundation alleges that the Kremlin gossip he collected was “anything of value.”
“Steele, a foreign national, solicited numerous other foreign nationals, including but not limited to Russian citizens and current and former members of the Russian government and Russian intelligence services, for things of value,” Coolidge Reagan alleges.
Third, Mr. Steele was so involved in trying to sell his allegations to reporters in Washington he actually was making campaign decisions.
It is against the law for foreigner nationals to take on that role in U.S. elections.
“Compiled from lies, innuendo, and fabrications from foreign nationals, the dossier itself was a vehicle through which current and former agents of the Russian government were able to attempt to undermine Donald Trump’s candidacy,” the complaint alleges.
Coolidge Reagan is the second nonprofit to file an FEC dossier complaint.
In October 2017, shortly after the DNC’s role was announced, the Campaign Legal Center complained about just one issue — hiding the payments to Fusion GPS as legal services to Perkins Coie.
A spokesman said that the center hasn’t been notified of any FEC action and considers the matter still open.
Mr. Backer said the FEC process goes like this: The general counsel decides whether to accept a complaint and start a “matter under review.”
Respondents and complainants can then reply.
The counsel prepares a report to the commission, which votes on whether there is a “reason to believe” a violation occurred. If a complaint receives four votes, a formal investigation begins.