The revelation that the DNC and the Clinton Campaign, working through Democratic lawyer Marc Elias, funded the research conducted by Fusion GPS into the so-called Russia Trump dossier starting in April 2016 has rocked Washington to its foundations. The document, the veracity of which has been called into question by a number of intelligence sources, has formed the basis of conspiracy theories that the Trump campaign colluded with Russian intelligence to steal the 2016 presidential election.

What is the dossier?

The dossier consists of information gathered by a former British intelligence agent named Christopher Steele from Russian sources that alleged ties between the Russian government and the Trump campaign.

The research was paid for by as a yet unidentified Republican during the primary campaign before it was taken over by Marc Elias, the Democratic lawyer on behalf of the DNC and the Clinton campaign. The dossier contains alleged and in some cases salacious compromising information on President Trump as well as accounts of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian intelligence. Former FBI Director James Comey described the dossier as “salacious and unverified.”

What do the revelations mean?

The revelation that the Fusion GPS effort was funded by Democrats raises a great many questions. How much of the information within the dossier was shared with the DNC and the Clinton campaign? What was the FBI’s involvement in the matter?

In October 2016 Steele got an agreement with the Bureau to fund his investigation after the election, though the FBI withdrew its support once Steele was publicly identified. Why was the FBI involving itself in what amounted to opposition research on a presidential candidate on behalf of another? The Bureau is supposed to be independent of partisan politics.

More ominously is the possibility that the FBI used the dubious intelligence contained within the dossier to request from the FISA court warrants for intercepts involving Trump campaign officials. The answer to that question could call into question that entire investigation into the Russian collusion conspiracy theory.

The Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton now have some explaining to do.

Clinton has been alleging Russian involvement in her defeat ever since election day 2016. Now it looks like her campaign helped to pay for a document that employed dubious Russian sources possibly as part of an ongoing active measures operation to arrive at that conclusion. In effect, collusion with Russian seems to have happened, but it looks like it was with the Clintons in an ultimately doomed effort to take down Donald Trump. Hillary Clinton will likely fall back into the familiar pattern she has always gone into, deny and distract, which has served her so well many times before, However, added to the revelation about the Uranium One deal, it looks like that Ms. Clinton is in big trouble once again.