Democrats are targeting Republican Rep. Dana Rohrabacher with a new website intended to point out connections between the California congressman and figures in the investigation into Russian meddling in last year’s election.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee launched its “The Rohrabacher Conspiracy” on Wednesday. It shows a bulletin board that links Rohrabacher to various individuals, including Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Russian lawyer who met with President Donald Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr., and Paul Manafort, the former Trump campaign chairman who is under investigation for his ties to Russia.
The site also hits Rohrabacher for his ties to alt-right and white supremacist Charles C. Johnson.
Johnson was the person who arranged Rohrabacher's meeting with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Rohrabacher at the time claimed Assange denied Russia was involved in the hacking of the Democratic National Committee.
The website also ties Rohrabacher to Paul Behrends, who was fired after his ties to Russian to lobbyists and Veselnitskaya were revealed in the media.
And it highlights how Rohrabacher and Russian President Vladimir Putin once got into a drunken arm-wrestling match at Kelly’s Irish Times, a Washington, D.C., pub.
Rohrabacher has been called “Putin’s favorite congressman” for his defenses of Putin and the Russian government.
So far the two Democratic front-runners in their primary are Harley Rouda and researcher Hans Keirstead.
Kyle Quinn Quesada, Keirstad’s campaign manager, said the website was “another indicator that national Democrats are taking Dr. Hans Keirstead’s race against Rep. Rohrabacher seriously."
“Orange County voters connect with Hans Keirstead on his values and experience. It’s clear that Dr. Keirstead is the strongest choice to replace Rep. Rohrabacher in 2018.”
Rouda said in a statement, “We don’t know all the facts on Dana Rohrabacher’s ties with Russia, which is why I’ve sent a letter to the FBI calling on them to investigate. It’s clear we’re on to something — even Julian Assange is threatening me.
“The reality is, regardless of what Rohrabacher’s reasons are for his actions, the question remains: How does anything he’s doing for Russia help the people of the 48th?”