America First Legal has filed a complaint against Secretary of State Antony Blinken and 51 former senior intelligence officials over an alleged campaign finance violation. The group, which is led by former Trump aide Stephen Miller, alleges these officials coordinated with the Biden presidential campaign in 2020, particularly concerning the Hunter Biden laptop incident.
The filed complaint suggests that the officials, including notable Obama administration figures like John Brennan, James Clapper, and Leon Panetta, contributed to a “coordinated communication” that amounted to an unreported in-kind contribution. This involves their public assertion, weeks before the 2020 election, that the Hunter Biden laptop story bore "‘all the classic earmarks’ of Russian disinformation."
Key details of the complaint include an interaction between Blinken, then a Biden campaign adviser, and former CIA Deputy Director Michael Morrell, discussing the laptop story, Fox News reported. America First Legal argues that this and similar communications were part of a broader strategy to assist Biden in the election and discredit the laptop story.
Fox News reported:
"Morell testified that his communication with Blinken was one of a few communications he had with the Biden campaign, explaining that he also received a call from Steve Ricchetti, Chairman of the Biden campaign, following the October 22 debate to thank him for writing the statement," the House Judiciary Committee press release from April said. "Morell also explained that the Biden campaign helped to strategize about the public release of the statement. Morell further explained that one of his two goals in releasing the statement was to help then-[former] Vice President Biden in the debate and to assist him in winning the election."
The complaint also touches on the impact of the officials' statement on social media platforms, which limited distribution of the New York Post's initial reporting on the laptop. The Biden campaign and Democratic National Committee, among other entities, are accused of failing to report these alleged coordinated efforts.
"There are reasons to believe that the public statement by 51 former intelligence officials was a coordinated political operation to help elect Vice President Biden in the 2020 presidential election, as set forth below," the complaint to the FEC says.
America First Legal's senior counselor Reed D. Rubinstein has framed the issue as part of a pattern of election meddling, drawing parallels to actions by intelligence officials in the 2016 presidential election. The group calls for the Federal Election Commission to act on these allegations, citing the need for transparency in election-related coordination.
Responses from the Biden 2024 presidential campaign, the Democratic National Committee, and the State Department regarding inquiries into these allegations have yet to be made. The complaint puts forth that the actions of Blinken and the former intelligence officials were a calculated effort to sway the 2020 presidential election in favor of Joe Biden.