Conservatives aren’t going to like this.
Last year, a controversial dossier compiled by a former British spy sent shockwaves through Washington. It contained unverified claims that President Donald Trump had deep ties to Russia and was potentially compromised by the Russians.
But now it turns out that a second dossier exists — and it contains some of the same information as the first one.
The Guardian reported on Tuesday that the FBI is in possession of both dossiers and is looking into whether any of the information is true. The agency is in the midst of an investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to win the 2016 presidential election.
This second document, like the first, is highly controversial. For starters, its author is Cody Shearer — a political activist with strong ties to the Clinton administration in the 1990s. He has no experience in intelligence, which makes his involvement with a document that could reflect badly on Trump look suspiciously partisan since he can’t claim to have spying expertise.
Things get murkier. Christopher Steele, the ex-British intelligence officer who authored the first dossier, gave the new “Shearer memo” to the FBI in October 2016. Apparently, he received Shearer’s work from an unidentified American contact and handed it over to authorities in an effort to give the FBI more evidence for its investigation. Steele noted that he couldn’t vouch for the claims in the second dossier, however.
But the fact that the FBI is continuing to assess the document, as one unnamed source told the Guardian, may indicate that there’s something there worth taking seriously. Both memos claim the Russians compromised Trump during his 2013 visit to Moscow when he allegedly engaged in lurid activity with prostitutes.
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