Mueller Expanding Probe to RNC

By on December 27, 2017

According to sources who spoke with Yahoo! News, special counsel Robert Mueller is now looking into the Republican National Committee’s data operation during the 2016 presidential election. In particular, Mueller is looking into what data the Trump campaign used to target specific swing states and see if they got any outside help from Russian trolls and bots in those areas.

Cambridge Analytica is the data firm in question and has already been under scrutiny for its role in potentially working with Wikileaks to help disseminate stolen emails from the Democratic National Committee.

From Yahoo! News:

In just the last few weeks, his prosecutors have begun questioning Republican National Committee staffers about the party digital operation that worked with the Trump campaign to target voters in key swing states. They are seeking to determine if the joint effort was related to the activities of Russian trolls and bots aimed at influencing the American electorate, according to two of the sources.

Examining the potential relationship between Cambridge Analytica, Russian attackers, and the Trump campaign is a logical step in the ongoing investigation. The special counsel’s team has spent the past months looking into whether the Russians provided direct help to the campaign by way of information stolen from voting databases.

If the Russian hackers didn’t give the stolen information directly to the campaign, it’s possible they could have use the data firm as a go-between and also as a means to properly leverage the information by using it to target political advertising and social media disinformation campaigns in key voting precincts.

It’s also so not surprising that the GOP has begun to amp up its attacks on the special counsel in recent days. It’s entirely possible that the Trump campaign wasn’t the only outfit to potentially benefit from Russian help, especially if the RNC and its data operations are somehow found to be tied to the Kremlin.