Last year, the CEO of Cambridge Analytica, Alexander Nix, wrote to Wikileaks and its founder Julian Assange and sought to assist the organization in releasing Hillary Clinton's hacked emails. If you recall, Cambridge Analytica is the data analytics firm started by Rebekah Mercer, daughter of Robert Mercer, a hedge fund billionaire that gave millions to the Trump campaign. Julian Assange has confirmed that Nix made solicitation according to the Daily Beast.
Why did Nix contact Wikileaks?
Nix, who heads Cambridge Analytica, told a third party that he reached out to Assange about his firm somehow helping the WikiLeaks editor release Clinton’s missing emails, according to two sources familiar with a congressional investigation into interactions between Trump associates and the Kremlin. Those sources also relayed that, according to Nix’s email, Assange told the Cambridge Analytica CEO that he didn’t want his help, and preferred to do the work on his own.
Rebekah Mercer suggested that Nix create a searchable online database of Clinton's hacked emails. She also suggested Nix seek help from Julian Assange (he already had at this point).
According to the New York Daily News, Rebekah Mercer asked Nix to create a searchable online database of Clinton's hacked emails for people to easily search through on the web. Nix responded to Mercer's suggestion to coordinate with Assange by claiming that he had already contacted him (without being asked) about coordinating Cambridge Analytica's efforts with Wikileaks. Assange claims that he refused Nix's offer to participate.
GOP mega-donor Rebekah Mercer emailed the CEO of a data science firm working on Donald Trump’s presidential campaign to ask if the hacked Clinton-related emails published by WikiLeaks could be indexed in a searchable database, it has been reported.
Assange claims that he did not assist Cambridge Analytica.
After publication (the Daily Beast), Assange provided this statement to The Daily Beast: ”We can confirm an approach by Cambridge Analytica and can confirm that it was rejected by WikiLeaks.”
Why might the Mercers so publicly back the Trump campaign?
Robert and Rebekah Mercer, a billionaire father-daughter duo that spent big to boost Trump’s presidential candidacy, are major investors in Cambridge Analytica. Robert Mercer co-manages a hedge fund that drew scrutiny from congressional investigators in 2014 for using questionable banking tactics to allegedly dodge paying upward of $7 billion in taxes.