FEC Fines Clinton’s Presidential Campaign, DNC For Lying About Steele Dossier
04:02 GMT 31.03.2022 (Updated: 04:27 GMT 31.03.2022)
© AP Photo / Carolyn KasterDemocratic presidential candidate former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton talks with Jake Sullivan, a former staff member for her at the State Department, during a break in testimony on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 22, 2015
© AP Photo / Carolyn Kaster
At the end of the 2016 US presidential election, then-candidate Donald Trump was accused of colluding with Russia. The claim gained widespread traction due to a collection of intelligence pursued by the Clinton campaign known as the Steele dossier.
Clinton’s campaign and the DNC were fined $8,000 and $105,000 respectively for wrongfully describing money paid to Fusion GPS, the consulting firm that commissioned the dossier, according to FEC documents viewed by the Post.
Clinton’s campaign and the DNC paid over $1 million to Perkins Coie law firm, which hired Fusion GPS to collect compromising data on Trump. Fusion GPS cooperated with former British MI6 intelligence officer Christopher Steele, who later prepared the dossier, which alleged that Trump and his associates had ties to Moscow and that Russian special services had helped him win the 2016 election.
According to the FEC, the money paid to Perkins Coie was listed in disclosure forms as payments for “legal advice and services” rather than opposition research, which was said by the Commission to be a violation of electoral legislation.
Neither the Clinton campaign nor the DNC admitted to the FEC’s finding, but said they “will not further contest the Commission’s finding of probable cause,” according to the newspaper. Their attorneys said that the payments were properly indicated “in accordance with the law and Commission guidelines” as Fusion GPS’ worked to assist Perkins Coie “in providing legal advice.”
Clinton's campaign and the DNC lawyers also claimed that Fusion GPS’s work was protected under attorney-client privilege.
Meanwhile, the Steele dossier, used by Democrats as the main tool to fuel a major campaign against the recently-elected Donald Trump, was later exposed as being fabricated.
In September last year, US Department of Justice Special Prosecutor John Durham indicted Hillary Clinton's campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann, who worked at Perkins Coie, for perjury before the FBI in 2016.
As a result of John Durham’s investigation, analyst Igor Danchenko, who is suspected of collecting information for the dossier, was arrested in November in the US.
Earlier this week, Trump filed a lawsuit against his 2016 presidential rival, claiming Hilary Clinton and her team attempted to rig the 2016 election by accusing Trump of colluding with Russia.