4 Special Counsel Revelations Tying Spygate To Hillary Clinton’s Campaign
Last week saw the corrupt media spinning explosive revelations from Special Counsel John Durham’s office as a big ol’ nothingburger. Yet, as I explained on Friday, none of the narratives pushed by the Durham deniers countered the evidence in court filings showing that “enemies of Donald Trump surveilled the internet traffic at Trump Tower, at his New York City apartment building, and later at the executive office of the president of the United States, then fed disinformation about that traffic to intelligence agencies hoping to frame Trump as a Russia-connected stooge.”
Although The New York Times, CNN, and other legacy media outlets failed to refute the significance of the details revealed in Durham’s latest filing, their concerted efforts highlighted their previous lack of coverage of the investigation and the many stunning revelations that have come from Durham’s team to date.
One of the most significant aspects of the ongoing investigation ignored or downplayed by the supposed standard-bearers of journalism concerns the extensive role the Hillary Clinton campaign played in the Russia collusion hoax. “Russia, Russia, Russia” was a Hillary Clinton enterprise. Here are four revelations demonstrating that from the recent special counsel filings.
It has long been known that the law firm representing the Clinton campaign, Perkins Coie, hired Fusion GPS to provide opposition research on Donald Trump, and that in return Fusion GPS hired Christopher Steele and Glenn Simpson’s company, Orbis Business Intelligence, to compile negative information on Trump.
In charging Russian national Igor Danchenko in November 2021 with five counts of lying to the FBI related to his role as Steele’s “Primary Sub-Source,” Durham publicly elaborated on those connections in a 39-page speaking indictment. The indictment did more than confirm the Clinton campaign’s responsibility for funding the Steele dossier: It alleged the Russian national fed Steele false “intel” that Steele then provided to FBI, as well as several other agencies in the Obama administration.
One category of false intel Danchenko, as Steele’s Primary Sub-Source, provided concerned Sergei Millian, a New York-based real estate broker who in 2016 had served as the president of the Russian-American Chamber of Commerce. Millian “had occasion to work on real estate projects with Trump and staff at the Trump Organization,” the indictment explained.
Danchenko reported to Steele purported conversations he had with Millian, which Steele then included in his dossier. The dossier then maintained that Millian, “an ethnic Russian close associate of Republican US presidential candidate Donald Trump, admitted that there was a well-developed conspiracy of co-operation between them and the Russian leadership.” The dossier asserted this conspiracy “was managed on the Trump side” by his then-campaign manager Paul Manafort, who used Carter Page as an intermediary.
According to the indictment, when questioned about these claims, Danchenko falsely stated to the FBI that in “the summer of 2016, he received a phone call from an anonymous Russian male who did not identify himself to Danchenko but who Danchenko claimed to believe was” Millian. Danchenko also falsely claimed, Durham alleged, to have arranged to meet Millian in New York, and that Millian never showed. Danchenko would later repeat those lies on multiple occasions.
Millian denied ever speaking with Danchenko. The indictment included excerpts from emails indicating Danchenko never spoke with or intended to meet Millian. Nonetheless, according to Steele, Danchenko claimed he met Millian in person on two or three separate occasions. Steele also claimed Danchenko sourced, in part, the claims about “Trump’s purported salacious sexual activity” to Millian.
Danchenko’s alleged lies to the FBI about Millian served as the basis for four of the five false statement charges leveled against the “Primary Sub-Source.” But more significant than the criminal charges pending against Danchenko is the bottom line of what those charges mean about the Clinton campaign’s role in Spygate.
In addition to allegedly lying to the FBI, the indictment asserts that Danchenko also fed Steele similar falsehoods about Millian—which Steele then included in the dossier. In other words, the Clinton campaign paid for negative and false information about Trump that was sourced primarily to a Russian national.
The Clinton campaign then paid for those false claims to be seeded in the media. Steele also provided the Clinton campaign-funded dossier to the FBI, which then sought and obtained four FISA court orders to surveil former Trump campaign advisor Page—and as a result of that surveillance, the Crossfire Hurricane team obtained Trump campaign communications.
The Clinton Campaign Paid for Fake Intel Supplied by a Clinton Crony and Long-Time Democrat to Feed to the FBI and Press
Not only did the Clinton campaign pay for a report primarily sourced to a Russian national who allegedly lied about Trump and his associates, the Steele dossier also included fake intel supplied by long-time Clinton associate and faithful Democrat, Charles Dolan, Jr., called PR Executive-1 in the Danchenko indictment.
Dolan’s connection to the Steele dossier became public when Durham charged Danchenko with lying to FBI agents about his conversations with the long-time Democrat. Specifically, the indictment charged that Danchenko claimed he had not spoken with Dolan about any material contained in the Steele dossier, when in fact Danchenko used Dolan as a source for a portion of the dossier related to Manafort’s departure from the Trump campaign.
According to the indictment, Danchenko, telling Dolan that he was working “on a project against Trump,” asked if he had “any thought, rumor, allegation” about Manafort’s resignation. Dolan later emailed Danchenko that a “GOP friend of mine who knows some of the players” told him that a campaign staff member who hates Manafort played a role in Manafort’s firing. “I think the bottom line is that in addition to the Ukraine revelations, a number of people wanted [Manafort] gone.”
What Dolan told Danchenko about Manafort’s termination ended up in the Steele dossier. But, as Dolan would later admit to the FBI, Dolan invented the entire conversation and merely repeated details he had read about in the news.
The indictment also alleged Danchenko fed Steele details about Trump’s stay at the Moscow Ritz-Carlton that also originated with Dolan. Dolan, who had extensive connections in Russia, had traveled to Russia in June 2016. Hotel staff members gave Dolan a tour of the Presidential Suite, telling him Trump had stayed there. None of the hotel staff suggested Trump had engaged in any sexual or salacious activities there, however.
According to Durham’s team, several other aspects of Steele’s reporting included details that “bore substantial similarities to information that [Dolan] received during the 2016 time period.”
Danchenko’s allegedly false statement to the FBI—that he had not discussed any of the material he had provided Steele with Dolan—served as the basis for the final count on which the special counsel indicted Danchenko. But, again, the significance of these new revelations is much broader: The public now knows “a Clinton crony in the person of Dolan fed Danchenko false information that Danchenko then presented to Steele as intel. Steele then regurgitated Danchenko’s claims in the Clinton campaign-funded dossier the former MI6 agent provided the FBI.”
The Clinton Campaign Peddled More than the Steele Dossier
The revelation that the Clinton campaign financed the Steele dossier and the false “intel” sourced to a Russian national and a Clinton crony with extensive Russian connections is shocking enough, but there is more. The special counsel’s indictment of attorney Michael Sussmann revealed allegations connecting the Clinton campaign to the peddling of a second fake scandal about Trump—this one involving the Russian-connected Alfa Bank.
Sussmann, a lawyer for Perkins Coie, served as an attorney for both the Clinton campaign and tech executive Rodney Joffe. In September 2021, the special counsel’s office charged Sussmann with making a materially false statement to the FBI. Specifically, the indictment alleged that on September 19, 2016—less than two months before the 2016 U.S. presidential election—Sussmann met with the FBI General Counsel James Baker.
During that meeting, Sussmann provided Baker “purported data and ‘white papers’ that allegedly demonstrated a covert communications channel between the Trump Organization and a Russia-based bank [Alfa Bank].” The indictment further alleged that Sussman lied in that meeting, falsely telling Baker “that he was not providing the allegations to the FBI on behalf of any client.” In fact, though, Sussmann “had assembled and conveyed the allegations to the FBI on behalf of at least two specific clients,” namely Joffe and the Clinton campaign.
The details of Sussmann’s work for the Clinton campaign on this second Russia hoax related to Alfa Bank prove just as appalling as the Clinton campaign’s financing of the Steele dossier. Here’s what we know from the indictment.
In July 2016, Joffe, whose tech company had hired Sussmann for other legal work, informed Sussmann of data purporting to show a secret communication network existed between the Trump organization and Russia. According to the indictment, over the next few weeks, Joffe and Sussmann worked with the Clinton campaign’s general counsel, Marc Elias, “and individuals acting on behalf of the Clinton Campaign to share information about the Russian Bank Data with the media and others, claiming that it demonstrated the existence of a secret communications channel between the Trump Organization and [Alfa Bank].”
The indictment then detailed several of the meetings between Sussmann, Joffe, and Elias that occurred from late July to about mid-August 2016, during which they discussed how to coordinate and communicate the Alfa Bank allegations.
According to the indictment, the Clinton campaign was billed for the time Sussmann spent working with others to draft, review, and revise a paper that summarized the Alfa Bank allegations, which Sussmann later provided to the FBI and reporters. The Clinton campaign was likewise billed for the time Sussmann spent meeting with Fusion GPS and with the media about the Alfa-Bank allegations. Sussmann also charged the Clinton campaign for time he spent coordinating with a Georgia Tech researcher about speaking to a reporter about the Alfa Bank allegations.
In indicting Sussmann, Durham stated that Sussman, Joffe, and Perkins Coie “had coordinated, and were continuing to coordinate, with representatives and agents of the Clinton Campaign with regard to the data and written materials that Sussmann gave to the FBI and the media related to the Alfa-Bank allegations.”
Elias likewise billed the campaign for time spent discussing the Alfa-Bank allegations and Sussmann’s efforts to seed the story to the media. Elias later exchanged emails with “the Clinton Campaign’s campaign manager, communications director, and foreign policy advisor” concerning the Alfa-Bank allegations Sussmann had fed to the reporter.
Additionally, Fusion GPS, also a paid agent of the Clinton campaign, drafted a second white paper related to the supposed secret communication network, which Sussmann also provided to the FBI, again while indicating he was not working on behalf of any client.
The indictment makes all these points clear. In total, they translate to the Clinton campaign paying for the entirety of the Alfa Bank hoax, from crafting the theory, to drafting the “white papers,” to peddling of the papers to both the FBI and the media.
Even Sussmann saw the story in these revelations, with him seeking “to conceal the Clinton Campaign’s ties to the [Alfa Bank] allegations from the FBI and others,” according to Durham’s team, going back to October 2018. That month Sussmann reviewed and acquiesced in his former law firm, Perkins Coie, issuing a statement professing that when he met with Baker, “it was not connected to the firm’s representation of the Hillary Clinton Campaign, the DNC or any Political Law Group client.” The then-Managing Partner at Perkins Coie likewise declared the same in a Wall Street Journal op-ed in October 2018, with Sussmann’s apparent approval of the PR move.
Yet the media provided scant coverage of the Clinton campaign’s responsibility for the Alfa Bank hoax.
Joffe’s Pro Bono Support of Clinton
To downplay the Clinton campaign’s responsibility for the Alfa Bank hoax, the press both limited its discussion of the evidence showing Sussmann was acting on behalf of the Clinton campaign and focused its attention on Tech Executive-1, Joffe.
Here, the Clinton defenders note that while the special counsel’s filings show the Clinton Campaign hired Perkins Coie and Joffe hired Perkins Coie, there is nothing to suggest that the Clinton campaign paid Joffe to work on its behalf. That aims to absolve the Clinton campaign from the scandal. But while the Clinton campaign did not pay Joffe, the evidence Durham uncovered indicates the tech guru was nonetheless acting for her benefit.
For instance, the Sussmann indictment alleged that Joffe told individuals working at one of his tech companies “that he was working with someone who had close ties to the Democratic Party and to Hillary Clinton.” “They’re looking for a true story that could be used as the basis for closer examination,” Joffe explained in discussing what was needed for the Alfa Bank angle.
Then, when Joffe obtained the data he believed would benefit Clinton, he provided the information to Sussmann so Sussmann could draft and disseminate the materials to the media and the FBI. Joffe also assisted Sussmann and others as they drafted, reviewed, and revised a paper summarizing the Alfa Bank allegations. While Joffe didn’t bill the time to the Clinton campaign, Sussmann billed the campaign for the time he spent with Joffe on these tasks.
The special counsel’s investigation also revealed evidence suggesting Joffe assisted with the Alfa Bank canard to please Clinton: Joffe allegedly told the two Georgia Tech researchers assisting him that his goal in obtaining internet data showing potential ties between Trump and Russia was to support an “inference” and “narrative” regarding Trump that would please certain “VIPs.”
Joffe also “claimed to have been previously offered a position in the government in the event Hillary Clinton won the Presidency, stating in an email days after the U.S. Presidential election: ‘I was tentatively offered the top [cybersecurity] job by the Democrats when it looked like they’d win.’”
In short, Joffe may not have been on the Clinton campaign payroll, but he was acting as if he were—with the full knowledge of the Clinton campaign lawyers with whom he was working hand-in-hand. So, rather than exonerate the Clinton campaign in the Alfa Bank scam, Joffe’s pro bono assist to the campaign’s lawyers provides another layer of responsibility.
More Clinton Revelations to Come
As the special counsel investigation continues, and the Danchenko and Sussmann criminal cases proceed to trial, Americans can expect the reveal of more evidence connecting the Clinton campaign to the Russia collusion hoax. The special counsel’s office has already gone public with the fact that Durham’s team has subpoenaed the Democratic National Committee, the Clinton campaign, and Perkins Coie, as well as “an investigative firm” that translates to Fusion GPS, and obtained tens of thousands of relevant documents. Government investigators have also prepared reports of approximately 100 interviews conducted by the special counsel’s office, including with a person identified as “a former employee of the Clinton Campaign.”
But sadly, when the details of those aspects of the investigation become known, the public can also expect the legacy media to bury or downplay any news that hurts the Clintons or Democrats—or that vindicates Trump.
Margot Cleveland is a senior contributor to The Federalist. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.