Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein was the beneficiary of at least one of the Russian-bought political ads on Facebook that federal government officials suspect were intended to influence the 2016 election.
Other advertisements paid for by shadowy Russian buyers criticized Hillary Clinton and promoted Donald Trump. Some backed Bernie Sanders and his platform even after his presidential campaign had ended, according to a person with knowledge of the ads.
The ads show a complicated effort that didnt necessarily hew to promoting Trump and bashing Clinton. Instead, they show a desire to create divisions while sometimes praising Trump, Sanders and Stein. A number of the ads seemed to question Clintons authenticity and tout some of the liberal criticisms of her candidacy.
Earlier this month, Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia, the Democratic vice chairman of the Intelligence Committee, said the 3,000 ads that Facebook has determined to have Russian links may be the tip of the iceberg and part of a far larger Kremlin plot to influence the 2016 election through Facebook and other social media platforms.