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Thu Jan 10, 2019, 07:14 PM

This is exactly what collusion looks like

News that President Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort provided 2016 presidential campaign polling data to Konstantin Kilimnik, a Russian national with suspected ties to Russian intelligence, starkly contrasts with Trump’s repeated claims there was “no collusion” with Russia during his campaign. This is exactly what collusion looks like. What remains to be seen is whether that collusion was also a crime.

We’ve already seen the legal theory that could make Manafort’s sharing of the polling data a criminal offense. Last February, special counsel Robert S. Mueller III indicted 13 Russian individuals and three Russian companies for their alleged extensive efforts to influence the 2016 presidential election, primarily through the use of fake social media accounts. The lead charge in Mueller’s indictment was “conspiracy to defraud the United States.” Conspiracy — a partnership in crime — is the legal equivalent of collusion. It covers agreements to impair, obstruct or defeat lawful government functions, including those related to administering federal elections and to regulating the activities of foreign agents within the United States. Mueller charged that the Russian defendants engaged in just such a conspiracy by posing as American political activists and otherwise concealing their efforts to help Trump win the election.

One of the Russian companies, Concord Management & Consulting LLC, appeared in court to contest the indictment. The company mounted a vigorous challenge to the conspiracy charge, claiming the government’s legal theory was invalid for a number of reasons. But in November, a federal judge rejected Concord’s arguments.

As of now, only Russians are charged in that indictment. But if there is evidence that Manafort or others in the Trump campaign agreed to help the Russians in their efforts, they could potentially be implicated in the same conspiracy. This would be true even if the Americans did not directly participate in any of the fake social media campaigns or other Russian activities. You can be guilty of conspiring to help others commit crimes even if you do not directly take part in those crimes yourself.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/01/10/this-is-exactly-what-collusion-looks-like/

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Reply This is exactly what collusion looks like (Original post)
Zorro Jan 2019 OP
dlk Jan 2019 #1

Response to Zorro (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 07:18 PM

1. This Was a Conspiracy!

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