CNN: Podesta, Wasserman Schultz Said They Didn’t Know Who Funded Dossier

Andrew Harnik/AP

Former Democratic National Committee chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) and Hillary Clinton campaign chair John Podesta recently told Senate investigators that they did not know who funded research that led to the so-called Trump dossier, CNN reported on Thursday.

CNN reported, citing three unnamed sources familiar with the matter, that Podesta and Wasserman Schultz made their denials before the Washington Post reported on Tuesday that Clinton’s campaign and the DNC partly paid for research firm Fusion GPS’ work that ended up in the dossier.

According to one source CNN cited, Podesta in September told the Senate Intelligence Committee that he was not aware of a contractual relationship between Clinton’s campaign and Fusion GPS.

Wasserman Schultz told CNN that she “didn’t have any awareness of the arrangement at all” and said she was “certainly” not going to confirm the subject of any discussion. According to CNN, Senate investigators interviewed Wasserman Schultz earlier in October.

According to the Washington Post’s report, Clinton campaign attorney Marc Elias and his law firm Perkins Coie retained Fusion GPS in April 2016. One source told the Washington Post that Perkins Coie did not inform Clinton’s campaign or the DNC of Fusion GPS’ role in conducting research into Donald Trump.

CNN reported, citing multiple unnamed sources, that Elias sat next to Podesta during his Senate interview, but was present as Podesta’s lawyer rather than as an additional witness.

Perkins Coie authorized Fusion GPS to disclose its role in partly funding that research in a letter CNN obtained dated Tuesday.

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Esme Cribb is a newswriter for TPM in New York City. She can be found on Twitter @emquiry and reached by email at esme@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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