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Ex-CIA Officer: Major Trump Donor With Ties to Russia Likely Part of Campaign to Influence Election

NBC News has a fresh report on a topic that’s taken a backseat this week to the madness on Capitol Hill: Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel appeared on Morning Joe to discuss his investigation on a Russian-born businessman who donated hundreds of thousands to President Donald Trump‘s campaign, before contacting a “high-ranking Russian official” in July 2016 to boast of the connection and request a meeting.

Simon Kukes, a Houston-based oil executive with deep ties to Moscow, donated $273,000 to a Trump super PAC during the campaign, per NBC News.

NBC reported on an email exchange between Kukes and the Russian official, in which the businessman touts his ties to the Trump campaign.

“That email really made my blood run cold,” said former CIA officer Lindsay Moran, in an interview with NBC News. “Because there’s so little said, and yet so much conveyed.”

“To me what’s conveyed is: ‘I was with Donald Trump, we have a plan in action and it’s going to work. Our guy’s going to win,'” Moran said.

Engel asked Moran if the email could just be an exchange between friends. “I don’t buy that,” she replied. “This doesn’t read like an email exchange between two friends catching up. To me this reads like an email exchange between a source and a handler, or a source and headquarters.

“Do you think that these donations were part of a Russian campaign to influence the election and help President Trump?” Engel asked.

“Absolutely,” Moran said. “After reading this email exchange, I have nary a doubt.”

Watch above, via MSNBC.

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