Tom Vilsack, the Secretary of Agriculture, asked whether presidential candidate Donald Trump violated the Logan Act. The Logan Act is a 200-year-old law that prohibits U. S. citizens from private dealings with foreign governments "in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States."
"Any citizen of the United States, wherever he may be, who, without authority of the United States, directly or indirectly commences or carries on any correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both. This section shall not abridge the right of a citizen to apply, himself or his agent, to any foreign government or the agents thereof for redress of any injury which he may have sustained from such government or any of its agents or subjects."
The Des Moines Register quoted Tom Vilsack, President Obama's Secretary of Agriculture and the former governor of Iowa, criticizing Trump's comments at a press conference in Florida on July 27.
"What about yesterday, where he invited a foreign country with which we have an adversarial relationship, to inject itself into our politics.... That's a no-no. You can't do that. That's not legal, that's not right. Yesterday, Donald Trump sided with Russia and not with us."