The DNC Just Sued the Trump Campaign and Russia for Collusion

The lawsuit says Moscow, the Trump team, and WikiLeaks conspired to interfere in the 2016 campaign.

Russia's president Vladimir Putin with President Donald Trump on November 11, 2017. Metzel Mikhail/TASS via ZUMA Press

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The Democratic National Committee on Friday sued the Trump campaign, the Russian government, WikiLeaks, Julian Assange, Roger Stone, Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, Paul Manafort, Rick Gates, George Papadopoulos and Russian oligarch Aras Agalarov, his son Emin and others, alleging they conspired to disrupt the 2016 election.

The lawsuit charges that after Russian intelligence agents hacked into the DNC’s computers, the Trump campaign became “a willing and active partner.” In essence, the Democrats say that there is already enough public information to conclude that the Trump campaign and Russia conspired to use hacked emails to help defeat Hillary Clinton.

The suit, filed in federal court in New York, charges that the Trump campaign solicited Russia’s aid “and maintained secret communications with individuals tied to the Russian government.” The campaign and top Trump advisers “formed an agreement” with Russian agents to promote Trump’s candidacy, the Democrats say.

As Russia used WikiLeaks to strategically release stolen information, “Trump openly praised the illegal disseminations and encouraged Russia to continue its violations of US law through its ongoing hacking campaign against the Democratic party,” the complaint says.

The suit says the Trump campaign’s conduct was “an act of previously unimaginable treachery: The campaign of the presidential nominee of a major party in league with a hostile foreign power to bolster its own chance to win the presidency.”

The DNC says the hacking required Democrats to spend more than $1 million on repairs and cybersecurity fixes. The party says it suffered “a dramatic drop in donations” and diminished job performance from employees, who faced death threats and other harassment after their personal information was exposed.

“I hope all your children get raped and murdered,” one message to a DNC employee said. “I hope your family knows nothing but suffering, torture and death.”

The suit seeks damages, an injunction preventing the defendants from future election-related hacking and distribution of stolen information, and a declaration from the court that the defendants “conspired to and did engage in a common scheme to hack Democratic computers, use “stolen information to impact the 2016 election for their own gain.”

This story has been updated.

Read the lawsuit:



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REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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