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What Does Baker Hostetler Have to Do With the Fusion GPS Controversy?
13 January 2018, 04:02 | Brandon Parsons
Democratic senator releases Fusion GPS testimony in Russia probe
Feinstein - against the wishes of Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) - on Tuesday morning released the full transcript of an interview in August with Glenn Simpson, the co-founder of Fusion GPS, the firm hired by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee to dig up dirt on Trump's ties with Russian Federation.
The White House and many Republicans have argued the Fusion GPS dossier and claims of collusion are a political smear, devoid of credibility. "Its interest to the public is obvious", Buzzfeed spokesman Matt Mittenthal said in a statement.
Simpson, founder of research firm Fusion GPS, spoke to investigators with the Senate Judiciary Committee for 10 hours in August.
"The Republicans on that committee didn't consult with her with respect to their referral to the Department of Justice", Murphy said, referring to Grassley and Sen.
In a separate tweet, Mr Trump accused Democratic senator Dianne Feinstein of being "underhanded and a disgrace" for disclosing details of a dossier of allegations about his ties to Russian Federation during the presidential campaign.
As the investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller III has gathered momentum in recent weeks, Republicans have expanded their attacks on Fusion GPS, Steele and the FBI.
Feinstein has on multiple occasions publicly stated that there is no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. Steele and Simpson had previously contacted the FBI regarding material they had collected on the Trump campaign - a project with no other direct tie to the Clinton investigation.
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"All we sort of wanted was for the government to do its job", Simpson said, "and we were concerned whether the information we had provided previously had ever, you know, risen to the leadership level of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It is political rhetoric to call the dossier phoney... there is nothing phoney about it". They demanded that the transcripts from their Congressional testimony be released to the public in order to clear up the misinformation Republicans are spreading about the company and about Steele.
Steele first reached out to the Federal Bureau of Investigation in early July 2016, because he was alarmed by the information he collected in June and felt obligated to step forward, Simpson said.
Fusion GPS hired former British spy Christopher Steele to produce the report, of which the main claims have been unverified.
Mr Simpson later said he was not sure if the Federal Bureau of Investigation informant was from the Mr Trump's election campaign or the Trump Organisation, the president's real estate firm, which is now run by his two older sons.
One passage in particular drew heavy attention - where Simpson's lawyer claimed someone had been killed over the dossier's publication.
Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, objected to the release of the transcript, calling Feinstein's actions "confounding".
"Well, I don't have any additional facts" said Simpson, who didn't have a name for the person being blackmailed.
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