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FEC Complaint Alleges Hillary, DNC Broke Election Law By Not Disclosing Trump-Russia Dossier Funding

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Today the Campaign Legal Center (CLC) filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) alleging the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign committee violated campaign finance law by failing to accurately disclose the purpose and recipient of payments for the dossier of research alleging connections between then-candidate Donald Trump and Russia.  The CLC's complaint asserts that by effectively hiding these payments from public scrutiny the DNC and Clinton "undermined the vital public information role of campaign disclosures."

On October 24, The Washington Post revealed that the DNC and Hillary for America paid opposition research firm Fusion GPS to dig into Trump’s Russia ties, but routed the money through the law firm Perkins Coie and described the purpose as “legal services” on their FEC reports rather than research. By law, campaign and party committees must disclose the reason money is spent and its recipient.

“By filing misleading reports, the DNC and Clinton campaign undermined the vital public information role of campaign disclosures,” said Adav Noti, senior director, trial litigation and strategy at CLC, who previously served as the FEC’s Associate General Counsel for Policy. “Voters need campaign disclosure laws to be enforced so they can hold candidates accountable for how they raise and spend money. The FEC must investigate this apparent violation and take appropriate action.”

“Questions about who paid for this dossier are the subject of intense public interest, and this is precisely the information that FEC reports are supposed to provide,” said Brendan Fischer, director, federal and FEC reform at CLC. “Payments by a campaign or party committee to an opposition research firm are legal, as long as those payments are accurately disclosed. But describing payments for opposition research as ‘legal services’ is entirely misleading and subverts the reporting requirements.”

Hillary

While details of the payment arrangements remain scarce, FEC records indicate that the Hillary campaign and the DNC paid a total of $12 million to Perkins Coie for "legal services."  Marc Elias, a Perkins partner and general counsel for Hillary's campaign, then used some portion of those funds to turn around an hire Fusion GPS who then contracted with a former British spy, Christopher Steele, to compile the now-infamous dossier.  Per the Daily Caller:

It was revealed on Tuesday that the Clinton campaign and DNC began paying Fusion GPS, the research firm that commissioned the dossier, last April to continue research it was conducting on Trump. The Washington Post reported that Fusion approached lawyers at Perkins Coie, the firm that represented the campaign and DNC, offering to sell its investigative services.

Marc Elias, a Perkins Coie partner, and the general counsel for the campaign and DNC, oversaw the operation, according to The Post.

It is not clear how much Democrats, through Perkins Coie, paid Fusion for the project, which lasted until early November. Federal Election Commission records show that the campaign and DNC paid the law firm $12 million during the election cycle.

Of course, we have no doubt that Hillary was in the dark about all of these arrangements.

Here is the full complaint filed by CLC:


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