The Democratic Party isn’t suing the Trump campaign as a political organization but as a criminal racketeering enterprise.
MSNBC legal analyst Danny Cevallos said, “It’s a creative pleading. It lays out in detail a great deal of factual information. Most of which we already had, but what you need to know is that this complaint alleges that the Trump organization — sorry — the Trump campaign was essentially a racketeering enterprise. A pretty serious allegation.”
When asked what would make the Trump campaign a racketeering enterprise, Cevallos answered, “Under Rico, you can bring — the government can bring a criminal Rico case, but what most people don’t know, there are civil Rico cases where you can sue if an organization is conducting racketeering activity. What is racketeering activity? It’s usually defined as at least two acts of predicate crime. So those can be extortion, bribery. In this case they’re alleging theft of trade secrets, economic espionage, but overall, all of these connections with Russia does not relieve the plaintiff ultimately of its burden to show that a conspiracy existed, and to do that you need to show there was an agreement, that all the defendants agreed to be involved in this organization, and that there was some overt act that specifically furthered the conspiracy. So while criminal defense attorneys like me complain that conspiracy is generally easy for the government to make out, in a case like this, you can’t just allege that a bunch of things happened, and, therefore, they all had some implicit agreement. Although in fairness, most conspiracies are proven not by direct evidence but by circumstantial evidence.”
The premise behind the lawsuit is that Trump’s campaign, like Fox News, isn’t what it claims to be. The Trump “campaign” isn’t trying to run for office, as much as they a criminal front for various activities that are intended to make money for Trump, his family, and those around him.
What the Trump campaign, Wikileaks, and the Russians did was a criminal act, and Democrats are looking to hold these parties civilly accountable for their crimes.