Donald Trump seemingly encouraged a cyber-attack against Hillary Clinton during a press conference Wednesday in Doral, Florida. “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” said the Republican presidential nominee, referring to the recent FBI investigation of her use of a private email server. “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press. Let’s see if that happens.”
As ABC News reports, multiple cyberscurity analysts have stated that Russian hackers were behind the leaked DNC emails published last week by Wikileaks. Trump stated the hack was “probably not Russia,” adding that the attack “shows how weak we are.”
“By the way, if they hacked, they probably have her 33,000 emails. I hope they do,” he continued. “They probably have her 33,000 emails that she lost and deleted. Because you’d see some beauties there. So let’s see.”
Clinton’s camp responded to Trump’s statements by saying he encouraged “espionage.” “This has to be the first time that a major presidential candidate has actively encouraged a foreign power to conduct espionage against his political opponent,” the statement reads. “That’s not hyperbole, those are just the facts. This has gone from being a matter of curiosity, and a matter of politics, to being a national security issue.”
Elsewhere, Trump deflected accusations about his business connections with Russia, saying he doesn’t know President Vladimir Putin. As Time reports, he also criticized Clinton on multiple issues – including her position on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, her delay since having a press conference and the lack of American flags decorating the DNC stage.
Trump followed the press conference by reiterating his request to Russia via Twitter. “If Russia or any other country or person has Hillary Clinton’s 33,000 illegally deleted emails, perhaps they should share them with the FBI!” he wrote.
At the same press conference, Trump repeatedly said Clinton’s running mate, Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine, did a “bad job” in New Jersey, apparently confusing him with Tom Kean, the Garden State’s former governor.