It appears that there’s a major case of backstabbing that happened when an associate of late Senator John McCain (R-AZ) gave the Steele dossier to BuzzFeed News, according to a court filing released on Wednesday.
The dossier turned out to be questionable, at best, and was delivered shortly after Donald Trump was elected as president in a stunning victory.
According to The Daily Caller, David Kramer, a former executive at the McCain Institute, met with a BuzzFeed reporter named Ken Bensinger, according to a filing that was submitted by U.S. District Court Judge Ursula Ungaro.
After that, BuzzFeed published the dossier written by Christopher Steele, a former British spy.
The revelation that Kramer was BuzzFeed’s source settles one of the main mysteries of the dossier, which alleges a vast conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russian government to influence the 2016 election.
According to Ungaro, BuzzFeed and Kramer dispute how Bensinger obtained a copy of the dossier.
“The parties dispute whether Kramer gave Bensinger a copy or whether Bensinger took photos of the Dossier when Kramer was not looking,” reads a footnote in Ungaro’s filing.
“Kramer testified that Bensinger took photos of the Dossier when Kramer was out of the room, even though he asked Bensinger not to,” wrote Ungaro, adding, “in a later declaration, Kramer stated that he had no objection to Bensinger taking a hard copy and had provided hard copies to other journalists.”
The other journalists who met with Kramer were not identified, but Kramer reportedly obtained a copy of the dossier in November of 2016 after a meeting with Steele.
Kramer and McCain knew about Steele’s investigation into Donald Trump.
It was McCain who sent Kramer to meet with Steele. After that, Kramer got the dossier from Glenn Simpson who founded Fusion GPS, who is the company that hired Steel thanks to the Clinton campaign and the DNC.
Kramer eventually meets with McCain and Christopher Brose, who was McCain’s chief of staff and they review Steele’s documents.
Kramer advised McCain to share the reports with the FBI and the CIA, according to Ungaro.
Days later, Kramer met at McCain’s behest with Victoria Nuland, who served then as assistant secretary of state for Europe and Eurasian affairs and the State Department, and Celeste Wallender, the top Russian affairs official at the National Security Council.
Nuland and Wallender were aware of the dossier and Steele.
“Kramer reviewed with Bensinger what he knew about the Dossier and explained that he took the allegations seriously,” according to the court filing.
A bizarre turn of events was that a conservative website had hired Fusion GPS to research possibly damaging information on Donald Trump.
Once Trump gained the Republican nomination, they told the group to stop their work researching Trump, but then Fusion GPS was later hired by Hillary Clinton’s campaign to do the same thing and look even further to see if there was a connection with Russia.