It is a federal crime for any person to "solicit, accept or receive" from a foreign national a monetary contribution or "other thing of value" which is given "for the purpose of influencing any election for Federal office." The element of "other thing of value" can be satisfied by opposition research, for which candidates regularly pay research firms. It is not necessary that the defendant actually receive the thing of value. The crime is complete upon the solicitation. Read more.
French Ambassador to Australia Jean-Pierre Thébault publicly chided Australia on Saturday for canceling a multibillion-euro submarine contract with Paris after striking up a strategic partnership with the U.S. and the U.K. Read more .