The Federal Election Commission hit both Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign and the Democratic National Committee with fines over lying about the funding of the fake Russian dossier used to smear and discredit former President Donald Trump just before his stunning 2016 presidential victory.
The Washington Examiner broke the story after receiving a letter obtained by the Coolidge Reagan Foundation showing that the DNC was fined $105,000 and the Clinton campaign was fined $8,000.
The FEC asserts in the letter that Clinton and the DNC violated strict rules when they mislabeled payments that were sent to Fusion GPS, the consulting firm that commissioned the now-debunked dossier via their law firm.
The law firm Perkins Coie was paid $1,024,407.97 by the two entities for the dossier. Clinton’s campaign and the DNC claimed the expenditures were for legal services, failing to mention it was actually for opposition research. The DNC forked over $849,407.97 while the Clinton campaign paid $175,000, according to the Washington Examiner.
Both entities contended that the description of payments for “legal advice and services” was correct because it was their law firm that hired Fusion GPS. However, that argument appears specious as they did so at the behest of the Clinton campaign and the DNC. The lawyers also argued that Fusion GPS’ research was protected under attorney-client privilege. The FEC ruled that the law is clear and was definitely violated.
In a political two-step concerning the FEC’s ruling, the Clinton campaign and DNC have not admitted to lying but they also won’t contest the finding.
“Solely for the purpose of settling this matter expeditiously and to avoid further legal costs, respondent[s] does not concede, but will not further contest the commission’s finding of probable cause to proceed” with the probe, the FEC noted.
The Coolidge Reagan Foundation filed a complaint three years ago with the FEC over the matter. The resultant memo will be made public in 30 days. The Campaign Legal Center also filed a complaint, according to Politico.
“This may well be the first time that Hillary Clinton — one of the most evidently corrupt politicians in American history — has actually been held legally accountable, and I’m proud to have forced the FEC to do their job for once. The Coolidge Reagan Foundation proved that with pluck and grit, Americans who stand with integrity can stand up to the Clinton machine and other corrupt political elites,” founder and president of the Coolidge Reagan Foundation, Dan Becker, stated.
Becker is also an attorney with Washington’s Chalmers & Adams law firm. He is looking to go after Clinton even further.
“Hillary Clinton and her cronies willfully engaged in the greatest political fraud in history — destroying our nation’s faith in the electoral process, and it’s high time they were held accountable. I hope this is only the beginning,” he remarked.
Trump said that the FEC ruling confirmed his belief that Clinton and the DNC falsely accused and smeared him and his campaign.
“Wow! Just out that the 2016 Clinton Campaign and the DNC paid the FEC today for violating the law by failing to disclose that their payments for ‘legal advice and services’ to law firm Perkins Coie was, in fact, a guise to hire numerous companies, all of whom are now named Defendants in my lawsuit, to try and take down and illegally destroy your favorite President, me,” he proclaimed in a statement.
“This was done to create, as I have stated many times, and is now confirmed, a Hoax funded by the DNC and the Clinton Campaign. This corruption is only beginning to be revealed, is un-American, and must never be allowed to happen again. Where do I go to get my reputation back?” Trump added.
“We settled aging and silly complaints from the 2016 election about ‘purpose descriptions’ in our FEC report,” the DNC responded in a statement.
Reporting by BizPac Review.