Trump says Hillary Clinton was the one who colluded with Russia

Trump says Hillary Clinton was the one who colluded with Russia
Donald Trump has said it is “commonly agreed” that there was no collusion between his presidential bid and the Russian government, after it emerged the Democrats and Hillary Clinton’s campaign helped fund a dossier of allegations against him.

“It is now commonly agreed, after many months of costly looking, that there was NO collusion between Russia and Trump,” President Trump tweeted on Friday, adding that there “was collusion with [Hillary Clinton]!”

Trump was seemingly referring to the accusations that the Clinton Foundation received bribes in exchange for approving the 2010 sale of US uranium mines to a Canadian company owned by the Russian corporation Rosatom, which he called the “Watergate of the modern age.”

“It’s a very sad commentary on politics in this country,” Trump told reporters on Wednesday, after it was revealed that the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) helped fund research that ended up in the dossier, for several months last year.

The document, compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele, alleged a compromising relationship between Trump and the Kremlin. It was finalized in December 2016, and published online by BuzzFeed in January.

The funding arrangement was brokered in the spring of 2016 by a law firm representing the Clinton campaign and the DNC, and lasted until right before the election, two people familiar with the dossier told AP.

The law firm of Perkins Coie was approached by Fusion GPS, a political research firm that had already begun research on Trump on behalf of an unidentified client during the GOP primary. Fusion GPS expressed interest in continuing to create opposition research on Trump, and Perkins Coie engaged it in April 2016 “to perform a variety of research services during the 2016 election cycle,” according to AP.

The Clinton campaign paid more than $5.6 million to Perkins Coie, recording the expenditures as “legal services,” according to the Federal Election Commission. The DNC paid the law firm more than $2.9 million for “legal and compliance consulting,” and reported $66,500 for research consulting.

Democrats’ allegations of Trump’s “collusion” with Russia to somehow subvert the 2016 election have led to the recusal of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who participated in the Trump campaign, and the appointment of former FBI Director Robert Mueller as special counsel.

Given that the FBI was handed the dossier after the election and even reportedly offered to pay Steele for more research, Mueller is now facing calls to step down. On Thursday, the Wall Street Journal editorial board argued the special counsel lacks the “critical distance” to analyze recent revelations about the FBI’s role in the saga. The Journal knew that the FBI possessed the dossier in 2016, the editorial board said.

“The American public deserves a full accounting of the scope and nature of Russian meddling in American democracy, and that means following the trail of the Steele dossier as much as it does the meetings of Trump campaign officials,” the editorial concluded.