Informant in GOP uranium probe identified as ex-lobbyist

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The former federal informant at the center of the Senate GOP probe into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s role in the Obama-era sale of a uranium company was identified Thursday as an ex-lobbyist for a Russian firm.

The former lobbyist, William Campbell, told Reuters he’s the secret witness in the investigation into the 2010 sale of Canada-based Uranium One to Russia’s Rosatom. He is planning to testify and give Congress documents about the sale, he told Reuters.

Despite the focus on Campbell and calls for him to be allowed to testify to Congress, two law enforcement officials speaking to Reuters expressed doubt that Campbell could provide meaningful information about the Uranium One deal. The officials, who worked in the Rosatom bribery case, said they don’t remember Campbell ever bringing up the Uranium One sale when they spoke with him.

{mosads}According to the publication, Campbell worked as an FBI source for an investigation into the head of a U.S. unit of Rosatom, the Russian state-owned nuclear power company.

Campbell reportedly told Reuters he wants to testify, citing activities of Russians in the U.S. 

“This latest iteration is simply more of the Right doing Trump’s bidding for him to distract from his own Russia problems,” said Clinton spokesman Nick Merrill.

The Uranium One sale and the Rosatom case in which Campbell was a part did not involve the same business units or executives, according to Reuters.

“I have worked with the Justice Department undercover for several years, and documentation relating to Uranium One and political influence does exist and I have it,” Campbell said, according to Reuters.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said in a letter to Campbell’s lawyer Campbell seems to have “critical” information to the committees “oversight of the Justice Department and its ongoing inquiry into” how the uranium deal was approved.

Clinton said Wednesday that if President Trump directs the Justice Department to investigation her role in the sale, it would be a “disastrous step into politicizing the Justice Department.”

“This is such an abuse of power,” Clinton said in an interview with Mother Jones, following reports that the Justice Department is considering appointing a special counsel to investigate.

Multiple Republicans have called for a special counsel to be named to investigate the Obama-era deal, which happened when Clinton was head of the State Department. 

Democrats have countered that Clinton wasn’t personally involved in the sale. The interagency Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which includes the State Department, approved the deal at the time. It was also investigated by congressional committees in 2015.

Uranium One, at the time the deal was made, controlled land equal to about 20 percent of the United States’ uranium capacity. 

Republicans have sought to tie the takeover to $145 million in donations to the Clinton Foundation by stakeholders in the company. 

Tags Chuck Grassley Hillary Clinton

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