Trump Data Guru: I Tried to Team Up With Julian Assange

The head of Cambridge Analytica said he asked the Wikileaks founder for help finding Hillary Clinton’s 33,000 deleted emails.

Alexander Nix, who heads a controversial data analytics firm that worked for President Donald Trump’s campaign, wrote in an email last year that he reached out to Wikileaks founder Julian Assange about Hillary Clinton’s missing 33,000 emails.

Nix, who heads Cambridge Analytica, told a third party that he reached out to Assange about his firm somehow helping the Wikileaks founder release Clinton’s missing emails, according to two sources familiar with a Congressional investigation into interactions between Trump associates and the Kremlin. Those sources also relayed that, according to Nix’s email, Assange told the Cambridge Analytica CEO that he didn’t want his help, and preferred to do the work on his own.

If the claims Nix made in that email are true, this would be the closest known connection between Trump’s campaign and Assange.

Cambridge Analytica did not provide comment for this story by press time.

After publication, Wikileaks editor Julian Assange provided this statement to The Daily Beast: “We can confirm an approach by Cambridge Analytica and can confirm that it was rejected by WikiLeaks,” Assange said.

Nobody has published the 33,000 emails that were deleted from the personal email server Hillary Clinton used while she was Secretary of State.

“It’s not at all clear that anybody hacked Clinton’s emails or has them,” said one of the sources familiar with the investigation.

Those 33,000 messages were a central focus of Trump and his allies during the campaign. At least one Republican operative tried to recruit hackers to obtain those emails, according to The Wall Street Journal. And at a press conference on July 27, 2016, while the Democratic National Convention was underway, Trump –– then the Republican nominee –– said he hoped the Kremlin would recover those emails.

“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’ll be able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” he said.

And on the campaign trail, Trump praised Wikileaks and tweeted about their findings. Politifact calculated that he mentioned the site about 137 times during the campaign.

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Source: Daily Beast | October 25, 2017 | Betsy Woodruff
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