“No one is above the law,” the complaint reads. “In the run-up to the 2016 election, Russia mounted a brazen attack on American democracy. The opening salvo was a cyberattack on the DNC, carried out on American soil. In 2015 and 2016, Russian intelligence services hacked into the DNC’s computers, penetrated its phone systems, and exfiltrated tens of thousands of documents and emails. Russia then used this stolen information to advance its own interests; destabilizing the U.S. political environment, denigrating the Democratic presidential nominee, and supporting the campaign of Donald J. Trump, whose policies would benefit the Kremlin.”
“In the Trump campaign, Russia found a willing and active partner in this effort,” the complaint continues. “In 2016, individuals tied to the Kremlin notified the Trump campaign that Russia intended to interfere with our democracy. Through multiple meetings, emails, and other communications, these Russian agents made clear that their government supported Trump and was prepared to use stolen emails and other information to damage his opponent and the Democratic Party.”
Special counsel Robert Mueller is investigating Russian election meddling and any ties to Trump campaign associates. That investigation has led to the indictments of multiple former campaign officials, some of whom are named as defendants in the DNC suit.
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., who was head of the DNC at the time, issued this statement in response to the lawsuit:
“The Democratic National Committee was the first major target of the Russian attack on our democracy, and I strongly believe that every individual who helped carry it out — foreign or domestic — should be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law,” she said.
Mr. Trump was criticized for expressing his appreciation of WikiLeaks weeks before the election.
“WikiLeaks, I love WikiLeaks,” the president said at a Florida rally on Oct. 12, 2016.
The DNC is dealing with significant debt after the 2016 election, and lags behind the Republican National Committee in fundraising. As of the end of February, the DNC had $10.1 million in the bank, but owed $6.3 million, according to Federal Election Commission records.