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In a striking and unexpected abandonment of a once-heralded prosecution initiated by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, the Justice Department moved Monday to drop charges against two Russian companies that were accused of funding a social media meme campaign to further their “strategic goal to sow discord in the U.S. political system, including the 2016 presidential election.”
Their alleged criminal effort included social media postings and campaigns aimed at dividing American public opinion and sowing discord in the electorate, officials said, although no impact on voters was ever demonstrated.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said in a statement that the indictments "make absolutely clear" that Russians tried to influence the presidential election to support Trump's campaign and continue to try to interfere with our elections.
House Speaker Paul Ryan called the Russians' alleged actions "a conspiracy to subvert the process, and take aim at democracy itself."
"We have known that Russians meddled in the election, but these indictments detail the extent of the subterfuge," Ryan said in a statement. "These Russians engaged in a sinister and systematic attack on our political system. It was a conspiracy to subvert the process, and take aim at democracy itself. Today's announcement underscores why we need to follow the facts and work to protect the integrity of future elections."
"DOJ statement and indictments reveal the extent and motivations of Russian interference in 2016 election," Brennan tweeted. "Claims of a 'hoax' in tatters. My take: Implausible that Russian actions did not influence the views and votes of at least some Americans."
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement that given the indictments, Trump should "immediately" implement the Russia sanctions that Congress passed last summer to punish Moscow for its election meddling.
A Russian company accused of interfering in the 2016 US presidential election continues to play hardball with special counsel Robert Mueller's team, now asking a federal judge to look closely at whether the prosecutors pursued a sham criminal case.
Concord Management and Consulting said in a court filing Monday that foreign interference in the election is a "make-believe crime." The company accused Mueller of trying to "justify his own existence" and needing "to indict a Russian -- any Russian" for political reasons.
Mueller's office has accused Concord Management of funding the Russian conspiracy that favored Trump's candidacy and using online accounts posing as Americans to distribute propaganda.
originally posted by: underwerks
The Trump administration and the William Barr controlled Justice Department are dropping charges against Russian Companies who were found to be trying to influence the election in Trumps favor?
Here’s my shocked face: