“Donald Trump Jr.’s Messages With WikiLeaks Point to Campaign-Finance Violations”

Bob Bauer in The Atlantic:

The prohibition has a broad sweep. It disallows contributions, donations, or “anything of value” provided by a foreign national to sway an election. It also bars a campaign from offering “substantial assistance” to a foreign national engaged in spending on American races. Trump Jr.’s messages not only powerfully support the case that the Trump campaign violated these rules, but they also compound the campaign’s vulnerability to “aiding and abetting” liability under the general criminal laws for assisting a foreign national in violating this spending ban.

The exchanges show how the campaign, in this instance through Trump Jr.’s activities, provided specific support and encouragement to WikiLeaks, which by then had effectively partnered with Russia to attack Hillary Clinton’s candidacy and promote Donald Trump’s. Russia devoted resources to hacking Democratic emails; WikiLeaks funded their distribution. In public and private communications, the campaign endorsed and facilitated their actions.

At this point, Bob sees something that Paul Ryan of Common Cause and I don’t yet see in relation to Wikileaks.


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