NEW: this is Dana Rohrabacher aka ‘Putin’s favourite Congressman’ revealed y’day as unnamed congressman cited in FBI affidavit of Russian agent, Maria Butina. I first posted this in July last year. It’s now deleted. Yet another thing for @nigel_farage to not answer questions on?
Rohrabacher, a Californian Republican, is overtly pro-Kremlin & has been forever. And one of the weirder things @Nigel_Farage is involved in is a bid to split California. You know who else wants to do that? Putin! Another Calexit campaign was revealed to be Russian influence op
Whoah! Time to pull out possibly my FAVOURITE EVER @nigel_farage tweet. From July last year when @Klickedy found this pic of Farage fishing with @DanaRohrabacher. Even then, he was "Putin's favourite Congressman". Now we also know he met Maria Butina - a Russian agent - in Moscow
BREAKING: it’s now official. Vote Leave campaign broke the law & is reported to the police. BIG BIG news. This is the official campaign. And it’s a massive overspend of a scale not seen in Modern British politics
Look at this! It’s not @matthew_elliott who’s referred to the police, it’s his stooges including @darrengrimes_ who was a student at the time. Note ‘other related offences’ may have been committed & files passed to the police. FINALLY!
NOTE: @BorisJohnson may have strategically jumped ship but other leader of the campaign @michaelgove still a minister. And it was @theresa_may’s political secretary who oversaw this overspending scheme. The govt is up to its neck in this & MUST be held to account
I really can't believe May is carrying on as if this isn't happening. As if Britain's not right in the middle of it. As if Brexit isn't absolutely part of it. It's not just US citizens who should be appalled & alarmed. This is absolutely our disaster too
Forget economics,forget immigration, forget whatever you thought Brexit was about. It doesn't matter. Because it's not any more. THIS is what it's about. The destruction of the North Atlantic alliance. We are in a new world order. We URGENTLY need to re-frame the Brexit debate
This is our national security on the line. The Trump debacle & the Brexit debacle cannot continue on two railway tracks. They are the same debacle. And today Trump plunged us into an entirely new & deeply sinister new era. We MUST recognise how it changes everything for us too
The BBC has released an official statement: "Panorama asked for access to all the evidence, but that was not forthcoming." This is not true. Panorama had access to exactly the same underlying evidence as the Observer, the @nytimes & subsequently @Channel4News.
NEW: Mueller’s investigation reaches Britain. Exclusive insight into UK’s forensic referendum data investigation which is now working with FBI. Cambridge Analytica data ‘accessed from Russia’ theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/j…
Mueller laid out the Russian intelligence op on Friday. Next comes the data. Which is where UK’s Elizabeth Denham comes in she is the data cop.
This is really significant. On Friday, we learned from Mueller that Russians stole DNC data analytics. We reveal today, Denham was with FBI last week & that Cambridge Analytica’s servers were accessed from Russia
The second major piece in two days in BBC's abject failure to cover this story. The Observer is tiny with almost no resources. The BBC is huge with enormous resources. Its journalists are paid fantastical sums. And yet they continue to ignore this story. Just what is going on??
The problem is that the BBC is so big that if it's not covering it, it's not news. That's why it matters. And that's why, in a highly partisan news landscape, its public service role is so important. But this is not a partisan issue. It's about the rule of law.
Facebook slapped with maximum fine. Criminal proceedings against Cambridge Analytica. @guardian reports on groundbreaking ICO investigation. BUT...much more to come. Multiple investigations into multiple crimes in referendum are still ongoing theguardian.com/technology/201…
This is key. AIQ - the data firm used by Vote Leave - confined to link to Cambridge Analytica, banned from processing UK voter data & huge question marks over legality of its work for four Brexit campaigns. It doesn’t get more critical than that.
BUT this is still just the start. ICO evidence points not just to data crimes committed by official campaign but also illegal co-ordination. Meanwhile @arron_banks being investigated for abusing insurance data & Remain also in spotlight. This is a total car crash.
Good backgrounder on groundbreaking ICO report here & what triggered it from @alexhern & @davidtpegg. And 👏👏👏 to colleagues, editors & lawyers on the Observer who brung it. The oldest Sunday newspaper in the world. Sticking it to the man. theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/j…
So, the cat is officially out of the bag. Tomorrow’s ICO’s report on FT front page. Maximum possible fine for Facebook. Criminal enforcement against Cambridge Analytica. Huge investigation ongoing into MULTIPLE crimes potentially committed in referendum. The ICO is bringing it..
There’s A LOT that’s of significance here for both US & UK. Massive Facebook fail that has huge ramifications for Trump campaign’s use of data. And Vote Leave’s data firm, AIQ, that was absolutely CENTRAL to 4 campaigns is BANNED from handling UK data. And that’s just the start..
Oh. And Remain being investigated as well as Leave. There you go, @IsabelOakeshott 🦄 🦄 🦄
A year & a half ago, this article kicked off an ICO investigation into use of data in the referendum & the biggest data investigation EVER. Interim report out tomorrow. All I’m saying is 🔥 🔥 🔥 theguardian.com/politics/2017/…
Feels like it could be a good time for this line to go...
So time for more emojis. Liz Denham, head of the ICO, & Britain’s chief data 👩✈️has just left the building. Report out 1am British time. Anyone seen Mark Zuckerberg? 😱😰😤
Brexit-Trump-Russia. Same Cambridge Analytica. Same Steve Bannon. Same Robert Mercer. Same Facebook. Same Russian ambassador. Same undisclosed meetings. Same offered business deals. One difference: you’ve got Mueller
Why doesn’t Britain have a Mueller? Because Theresa May’s government is up to its neck in this.
The Electoral Commission knows this. It knows the laws don’t work. And it’s these same laws that were in place during the referendum. Laws that we know now we’re broken
The referendum was the perfect storm. Where dark money met dark data. Inside the blackest of boxes, Facebook. We know now of multiple potential offences. There are multiple investigations. By a body that admits it has no powers. That has put out a desperate call for new ones
You know what I did this morning? I talked about Cambridge Analytica, Brexit, overspending, our decrepit useless electoral laws & Russian interference with the state-funded, public-service broadcaster. Sweden's state-funded, public-service broadcaster. sverigesradio.se/sida/avsnitt/1…
It is literally amazing how this is a story in Sweden & not Britain. Thank you @sverigesradio.
Well done, @MichaelLCrick. This is @matthew_elliott, CEO of Vote Leave, who refused to respond to the Guardian's questions yesterday. Instead he went & leaked both the report & the response to the BBC last night. Don't fall for the spin
This isn’t the official report. We don’t know the sanction. & it was leaked & spun by Vote Leave who put it out after midnight, post-football. These are criminal offences & @BorisJohnson & @michaelgove are in the frame & really troubling they used state broadcaster to do this
This is the official Vote Leave campaign, funded with taxpayers’ money & it leaked this report to select outlets. It briefed the Sun yesterday but wouldn’t answer the Guardian’s emails...
It can’t get reported properly at this stage because we don’t know the details but it’ll help the sting out the real report when it arrives because there’ll be a sense we’ve already heard it...it’s a cynical attempt to bury bad news by a campaign headed by 2 govt ministers.
CNN picked it up within days. But British broadcasters - not just BBC but also ITN & C4 have simply ignored. I got booked for the Today show & then cancelled. That’s the closest it’s come to being on the BBC, I think. Or am I missing something? cnn.it/2JH0yX9
In the meantime, Banks & Wigmore bombard Twitter with lies & insults & push the distraction story as the story. Nobody has questioned @LordAshcroft about why he sat on the info that harms Britain & no-one has pressed the PM on what is being done. What is being done??
Huzzah. Better late than never. Three weeks on, the NY Times finally follows up our story on the Brexit boys’ Russian gold deal. Looks like you’re going to have to report them to the police too, @arron_banks. nyti.ms/2NeuXOW
Legendary @nytimes reputation for accuracy letting it down a bit here. But I can confirm these are the same emails we have, @arron_banks. And we didn’t give them to them. So looks like you’ll have to fill out another of those crime reports.
But one thing has changed since then.
We knew then that Farage linked Trump & Bannon & Wikileaks & Mercer & Trump & Brexit & Cambridge Analytica. Now we know he links all those to Russia too.
And we know that he still hasn't answered qs on any of this. theguardian.com/commentisfree/…
Yesterday, crazy cat lady...
Today...ORWELL PRIZE WINNER!
Gobsmacked. (And a bit emotional). THANK YOU to everyone at the Observer & @guardian who helped get this on the page. And THANK YOU to everyone here who's supported it along the way. It's helped me more than I can say...
This story has been so HARD. Hard to report, hard to publish, hard to legal, hard..to keep on going. That we’ve got this far is down to a small team of editors & lawyers at the Observer with the skill & wisdom (& patience) to see it through...its v much their prize too xx
...and then there’s these two. What flipping GUTS...
In summary, @bloomberg describes the referendum as a financial heist. The biggest insider trading job in history when pollsters colluded with hedge funds to create a fake bubble that was burst by a fake concession ..delivered by friend of the people, @Nigel_Farage.
All the usual suspects are here, Brexit fundraiser Crispin Odey who made £300 million on the night. And, of course, that other well known pollster, the-keeper-of-the-Russian-secrets @LordAshcroft.