Did President Donald Trump just brag about using illegal data obtained by Cambridge Analytica to win the 2016 Presidential election? That appeared to be the case on Thursday morning when the 45th POTUS took to Twitter for his daily rant cycle.
The embattled data analysis firm is at the center of an international campaign scandal and Trump appears to be claiming that his people were aware of the company’s actions and used them to his campaign’s benefit.
“Remember when they were saying, during the campaign, that Donald Trump is giving great speeches and drawing big crowds, but he is spending much less money and not using social media as well as Crooked Hillary’s large and highly sophisticated staff. Well, not saying that anymore!” Trump tweeted.
The maneuver appears to be an attempt by President Trump to once again stroke his own ego.
According to various reports, Cambridge Analytica engaged in potentially illegal activities when it lifted Facebook data from more than 50 million Americans and then used that data to wage a type of cyber warfare against American voters.
Earlier in the week, London’s Channel 4 aired an undercover expose, in which top executives at Cambridge Analytica were caught admitting that they use bribes and sex workers to entrap politicians. At the center of that video was Cambridge Analytica CEO Alexander Nix. The company’s leader admitted to using fake IDs and subcontractors to operate secretly in elections all across the globe.
The explosive expose has led to special counsel Robert Mueller’s team zeroing in on the controversial data firm, according to ABC News.
It’s well-known that in June 2016, Jared Kushner hired the data mining firm at the behest of Steve Bannon, a former vice president of Cambridge Analytica. Within two months, the Trump campaign had 13 full-time Cambridge Analytica employees on the campaign’s payroll.
“We found that Facebook and digital targeting were the most effective ways to reach the audiences. After the primary, we started ramping up because we knew that doing a national campaign is different than doing a primary campaign,” Kushner told Forbes magazine following the election. “That was when we formalized the system because we had to ramp up for digital fundraising. We brought in Cambridge Analytica.”
Trump has made it a habit of gloating about his team’s ability to influence voters and this may be one tweet he quickly comes to regret.
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James Kosur is the former Editor-In-Chief and co-founder of Hill Reporter. He recently served as an editor for Business Insider and various other publications. James and his partners sold Hill Reporter to a new owner in July 2019.