The Senate Intelligence Committee released its fifth and final report on Russia’s “aggressive, multifaceted effort” to interfere in the 2016 presidential election.
This seems particularly damning:
Manafort hired and worked increasingly closely with a Russian national, Konstantin Kilimnik. Kilimnik is a Russian intelligence officer. Kilimnik became an integral part of Manafort’s operations in Ukraine and Russia, serving as Manafort’s primary liaison to Deripaska and eventually managing Manafort’s office in Kyiv. Kilimnik and Manafort formed a close and lasting relationship that endured to the 2016 U.S. elections. and beyond.
Axios: “On numerous occasions, Manafort sought to pass sensitive internal polling data and campaign strategy to Kilimnik. The committee was unable to determine why or what Kilimnik did with that information. The committee did, however, obtain ‘some information’ suggesting Kilimnik ‘may have been connected’ to Russia’s hacking and leaking of Democratic emails.”
The bottom line:
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Taken as a whole, Manafort’s high level access and willingness to share information with individuals closely affiliated with the Russian intelligence services, particularly Kilimnik and associates of Oleg Deripaska, represented a grave counterintelligence threat.