As Congress begins to look into the Russian interference of the 2016 election, Democrats seem to be getting a bit giddy about the possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russian intelligence to the point where they’re spewing unsubstantiated claims on the air.
On Friday, Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota that the collusion conspiracy theory was fact.
“Far worse than Watergate, when you believe a hostile foreign power engaged in a attempt, with the collusion of the sitting administration, to manipulate an election,” Ellison said.
“But you don’t know that—hold on, Congressman,” replied Camerota.
“We don’t know it,” admitted Ellison, but added that Trump aides had meetings during the election, it could be evidence of collusion, they’re important to the congressional probe, and that the Russians have made it known that they wanted the election to go a certain way.
“I’m not making an accusation, I’m saying there’s ample basis for an investigation,” said Ellison.
Again, it’s highly entertaining to see how Democrats see Russia as public enemy number one when they mocked the GOP and Mitt Romney for calling the country our greatest geopolitical foe. Second, Ellison’s claims are still shoddy. Meetings happen all the time between members of Congress and foreign officials. During election years, they most certainly have meeting between the staffs of both campaigns since either of them could the next governing administration. Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak was doing his job meeting with Trump aides. There was nothing wrong with any of those meetings, including the one between Kislyak and Michael Flynn. Flynn decided to not be fully transparent about those conversations with the vice president, which led to his resignation, but that trip up was on him. The conservation itself was not illegal.
Today, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) also insinuated that there was some collusion between the Russians and the Trump campaign with CNN’s Poppy Harlow.
“Last week, you were getting closer every day to the truth on the connections between the Trump campaign and Russia,” said Murphy.
“Just to be clear, you say, ‘the truth.’ Again, there has been no collusion proved at all between the campaign and the Russian hack. We’re going to learn more with these intelligence committee hearings starting next Monday,” replied Harlow.
Murphy circled back later in his interview, noting about the RNC platform change, where it’s been alleged that Trump directed that pro-Russian language be included.
“When I say ‘the truth,’ I say that we’re learning new things every week, right? The Trump campaign said for a long time that they had nothing to do with the change at the Republican Convention; the insertion of pro-Russian language into the platform. We now know that they directed it, that it might have come from Trump himself.
“There is no evidence to show that,” replied Harlow. “Yes, the platform changed at the RNC, but you’re making a connection that isn’t proven to be there.”
“Listen, I don’t know where the truth is, it just seems as if it’s shifting everyday,” replied Murphy.
Right, in other words, it’s still an ongoing investigation and any references that there is evidence to Russian intelligence and Trump campaign colluding during the 2016 election is simply not true.
There is zero evidence of such collusion. Even Murphy’s colleagues on the Senate Intelligence Committee that there may be zero evidence to prove such a connection.
Also, while there was an interference campaign waged by the Kremlin, it was mostly a propaganda campaign through state-funded media outlets and social media trolls. That’s not a hack, and far from what Democrats think happened on election night: a majority think the Russians tampered with vote tallies. That didn’t happen.
Are Democrats channeling their inner-Harry Reid who stained the U.S. Senate by peddling lies about Mitt Romney not paying taxes during the 2012 election? Reid remains unrepentant because Romney didn’t win, and calling his antics “one of the best things” he’s ever done. It doesn’t matter if it’s true; all that matters is if it destroys your opponent. House Democrats have threatened to walk away from their investigation into the matter if the committee turns into a “dog-and-pony show.” Given Ellison and Murphy peddling unsubstantiated claims, and being shot down by CNN, let’s be honest: Democrats never really intended to be cooperative. You see that with their possible plan to ask for Trump’s tax returns as they investigate Russia and the 2016 election. This is a multi-pronged assault to keep a shroud of illegitimacy and corruption over the Trump White House, despite the existence of zero evidence that Russia and the Trump campaign colluded because there probably is none. This is going to get ugly. And while we're at it, the spokesperson for the Kremlin said that Kislyak probably had similar meetings with aides of the Clinton campaign. I think it just shows that the Russian ambassador was doing his job, but just to make sure--let's subpoena those aides to see if they committed treason for meeting with the Russians.
Also, credit where credit is due. CNN, nice work shooting down both of these members of Congress for trying to peddle this garbage on air.