Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee helped fund the research that resulted in the so-called “Trump dossier” that contained scandalous material tying President Trump to Russia, according to a report Tuesday.
The Washington Post reported Tuesday that Marc Elias, a lawyer representing the Clinton campaign and the DNC, retained Fusion GPS in April 2016 to continue investigating Trump’s background. Before that, a still unknown Republican donor funded the firm.
The Clinton campaign and the DNC funded the firm’s efforts through the end of October 2016, days before Election Day. The dossier created by the group contains salacious and unverified allegations against Trump, and was authored by Christopher Steele, a former British intelligence officer with ties to the FBI.
The firm Fusion GPS had originally been funded by a still unknown GOP consultant firm during the combative 2016 GOP primary.
Officials representing Fusion GPS refused to testify before the House Intelligence Committee earlier this month, citing constitutional privileges.
“We cannot in good conscience do anything but advise our clients to stand on their constitutional privileges, the attorney work product doctrine and contractual obligations,” Fusion GPS’s counsel Josh Levy wrote earlier in October.
“Should you compel any of our three clients to appear at the scheduled deposition, they will invoke their constitutional privileges not to testify,” Levy said in the letter, according to the report. “Since that will be the case, we ask that the Committee excuse them from appearing.”
Clinton lawyer Marc E. Elias retained the firm in April 2016 and continued to fund the work until just days before the presidential election, the paper said.
The Washington Post’s report comes just days after Trump suggested Democrats, Russia or the FBI could be involved in funding for the unverified dossier.
“Workers of firm involved with the discredited and Fake Dossier take the 5th. Who paid for it, Russia, the FBI or the Dems (or all)?” Trump asked on Twitter last week.
The dossier includes explosive allegations about Trump’s behavior and his connections to businessmen in Moscow.
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