Congressional investigators say two companies that ran digital operations for Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign haven’t adequately denied foreign contacts — and are subpoenaing them for that information after they refused or ignored their initial requests.
As Business Insider reports, ranking members of the House Oversight and Judiciary committees announced their intention to subpoena Cambridge Analytica and Giles-Parscale for any “information from a foreign government or foreign actor” they had during the campaign.
“Giles-Parscale and Cambridge Analytica did not deny that they had contacts or communications with foreign governments or foreign actors during the 2016 campaign,” Reps. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) and Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) wrote to House Oversight Committee chair Trey Gowdy on Thursday.
While other companies that worked with Republicans provided information that “asserted unequivocally that none of their employees had contacts with any foreign agents during the presidential campaign,” Cambridge Analytica and Giles-Parscale failed to do so.
Brad Parscale, co-founder of Giles-Parscale and the Trump campaign’s digital director, refused an initial request from the committees sent in October. In his letter, Parscale said that although he agreed that he “would not want foreign governments meddling in our elections,” he had no “firsthand knowledge of foreign interference in the 2016 election.”
Moreover, he said he was “cooperating fully” with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation and other congressional inquiries on Russian meddling, and would not provide them documentation this is “duplicative of their work.”
As BI notes, Parscale’s digital operations were supervised by Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and adviser. Cambridge Analytica is well-known as an arm of the Republican megadonor Mercer family, who have funded Steve Bannon and Breitbart for years. Rebekah Mercer reportedly tried to buy Hillary Clinton’s missing emails from WikiLeaks before deciding it would leave her open to litigation.