Trump encourages Russia to hack Clinton emails
MIAMI – Agence France-Presse
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally in Toledo, Ohio, U.S., July 27, 2016. REUTERS photoDonald Trump sensationally challenged Russia on July 27 to hack into Hillary Clinton’s emails as a furious Democratic campaign accused the Republican nominee of inviting foreign spies to meddle in the U.S. presidential election.
At a wide-ranging news conference, the New York billionaire tried to undermine his White House rival, implied that Russian President Vladimir Putin used a racial slur against U.S. President Barack Obama and promised a heyday of U.S.-Russian relations under a Trump presidency.
His remarks provoked outrage from the Clinton campaign and left some Republicans wincing as his running mate hurriedly clarified that the party was not soft on Moscow and Trump tried to roll back his remarks.
Attacking Clinton as she prepares to accept her party’s formal nomination, Trump turned his guns on the email scandal dating back to her time as secretary of state and more than 30,000 emails deleted on grounds of being personal and not related to her job.
“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing. I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press,” Trump said.
The Clinton camp responded immediately and furiously.
“This has to be the first time that a major presidential candidate has actively encouraged a foreign power to conduct espionage against his political opponent,” Clinton’s senior policy advisor Jake Sullivan said.
“This has gone from being a matter of curiosity, and a matter of politics, to being a national security issue.”
While the FBI declined to recommend charges against Clinton over the email scandal, its conclusion that she was “extremely careless” with classified information has seen the Democrat lose her polling advantage to Trump.
Meanwhile, WikiLeaks released audio recordings July 27 apparently hacked from the Democratic National Committee’s servers, including a message from an irate Clinton supporter demanding the party stop “bending over backwards” for Bernie Sanders.
Links to the 29 recordings were posted on Twitter a few hours before Obama took the stage in Philadelphia to address the party’s national convention, a meeting that formally nominated Clinton as the Democratic candidate for the White House.