Hillary Clinton accuses Trump associates of helping Russia influence the 2016 election

Hillary Clinton has made crystal clear who she blames for Russian interference in the 2016 US election.

Clinton, in an interview with USA Today published Monday night, said she believes associates of then-candidate Donald Trump had an "understanding" that Russian President Vladimir Putin wanted her to lose and wanted Trump to win.

"There was certainly communications, and there was certainly an understanding of some sort," Clinton said.

"And there's no doubt in my mind that there are a tangle of financial relationships between Trump and his operation with Russian money," Clinton said, asserting that she is also confident the Trump campaign "worked really hard to hide their connections with Russians."

Clinton's remarks echo those of congressional investigators who have pointed to some top-level officials within Trump's inner circle who have been accused of misrepresenting their contacts with Russian diplomats and insiders tied to the Kremlin during and after the 2016 campaign.

RELATED: Members past and present of President Trump's inner circle

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Members past and present of President Trump's inner circle
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Members past and present of President Trump's inner circle
Ivanka Trump: First daughter and presidential adviser
Gen. John Kelly: Former Secretary of Homeland Security, current White House chief of staff
Steve Bannon: Former White House chief strategist, no longer with the Trump administration
Jared Kushner: Son-in-law and senior adviser
Kellyanne Conway: Former Trump campaign manager, current counselor to the president
Reince Priebus: Former White House chief of staff, no longer with the Trump administration
Anthony Scaramucci: Former White House communications director, no longer with the Trump administration
Sarah Huckabee Sanders: White House press secretary
Donald Trump Jr.: First son to President Trump
Sean Spicer: Former White House press secretary, soon to be no longer with the Trump administration
Jeff Sessions: U.S. attorney general
Steve Mnuchin: Secretary of Treasury
Paul Manafort: Former Trump campaign chairman
Carter Page: Former foreign policy adviser to Trump's presidential campaign
Omarosa Manigault: Director of communications for the Office of Public Liaison
Melania Trump: Wife to President Trump and first lady of the United States
Jason Miller: Former White House communications director, no longer with the Trump administration
Hope Hicks: White House Director of Strategic Communications
Mike Dubke: Former White House communications director, no longer with the Trump administration
Stephen Miller: Trump senior policy adviser
Corey Lewandowski: Former Trump campaign manager
Eric Trump: Son to President Trump
Rex Tillerson: Secretary of State
Michael Flynn: Former National Security Advisor, no longer with the Trump administration
Sebastian Gorka: Former deputy assistant to the president in the Trump administration, no longer in his White House role
Roger Stone: Former Trump campaign adviser, current host of Stone Cold Truth
Betsy DeVos: U.S. Education Secretary
Gary Cohn, director of the U.S. National Economic Council, walks toward Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, July 5, 2017. President Donald Trump's encounter this week at the Group of 20 summit with Russian leader Vladimir Putin is raising concerns among veteran American diplomats and analysts about a mismatch between a U.S. president new to global affairs and a wily former Soviet spymaster. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
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Members of that inner circle include:

FBI Special Counsel Robert Mueller is deep into a multipronged investigation to unpack whatever cooperation there may have been between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin during the US election. His investigation, along with those of several congressional committees, has produced explosive public and private testimony from fired FBI director James Comey and some of Trump's top aides.

Donald Trump Donald Trump Jr.REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

The investigation has also put many White House staffers in the crosshairs, and prompted some to retain private counsel. Kusher, Trump Jr., Manafort, and Sessions have denied any wrongdoing. For his part, President Donald Trump has repeatedly sought to discredit the Russia investigation by calling it "an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have won."

Clinton, who is now promoting her new book, "What Happened," which documents the turbulent 2016 election, made clear that she understands she deserves some of the blame for her failed 2016 presidential bid, and specifically criticized her own campaign's failures.

She also acknowledged that using a private email server while she was secretary of state — the move that would prompt an FBI investigation and disintegrate her campaign — was a "boneheaded mistake."

NOW WATCH: Putin says Trump is not his bride and claims Americans don't know the difference between Austria and Australia

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SEE ALSO: Members of Trump's legal team reportedly wanted Jared Kushner to step down over his Russia ties

DON'T MISS: 2 more Trump associates lawyer up as Mueller's investigation escalates

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