Oh, so we’re back to this game again: Russian collusion. For months, Congress and the DOJ have been looking into this allegation that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians to tilt the 2016 election. Prior to that, Democrats blamed the FBI for costing Hillary Clinton the election. It’s funny how things change. The FBI was in the liberal crosshairs for botching Clinton’s chances, but when it was discovered that the infamous and largely unverified Trump dossier was bankrolled by the Hillary campaign and used to obtain a FISA warrant to spy on a former adviser, Carter Page—the FBI was an impeccable institution that was beyond reproach. Well, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the ranking member on the House Intelligence Committee, says he thinks there’s evidence of collusion and obstruction of justice. This information isn’t public yet, however. Yes, how convenient, congressman (via The Guardian):
Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House intelligence committee, said Wednesday that the panel had seen an “abundance” of evidence of collusion with Russia and obstruction by Donald Trump’s campaign and administration that is not yet public.
Speaking to reporters in Washington, Schiff said a lot of information was already in the public domain that pointed to extensive contacts between the Trump campaign team and the Kremlin, and later efforts by the Trump entourage to cover up those contacts. But Schiff said there was much more to come out.
He said: “There is certainly an abundance of non-public information that we’ve gathered in the investigation. And I think some of that non-public evidence is evidence on the issue of collusion and some … on the issue of obstruction.”
Yeah, let’s just relax for a second here, congressman. You were duped into investigating whether Russia had nude photos of Trump last year. Also, you said that there is no definitive proof of collusion in April of 2017. In March of 2017, you said that there was circumstantial evidence and, in your opinion, evidence of deception.
“There is circumstantial evidence of collusion. There is direct evidence, I think, of deception and that's where we begin the investigation,” he said at the time.
The fact of the matter is the needle hasn’t changed. Schiff thinks there is evidence of collusion, but he’s not the final authority. As of now, there is zero evidence to suggest that Trump colluded with the Russians. Circumstantial evidence to Democrats is merely speaking with a Russian. I would say the bar is so low on the Left that drinking Stolichnaya would be considered circumstantial evidence of collusion. Yes, there have been reports about Trump associates having extensive contacts with the Russians—and all of them amounted to nothing. There was no evidence of collusion or wrongdoing. Well, maybe Paul Manafort, but his charges stem from years unrelated to his time on the 2016 campaign. Schiff may think there’s collusion, which certainly satisfies his Democratic colleagues, but it remains to be seen. It should be taken with a grain of salt, especially for a man who got tricked into doing a nude photo search of the president.
UPDATE: Yes, 13 Russian nationals were indicted on charges of trying to meddle in our elections, but this isn’t proof that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians. Also, these operations did not alter the outcome of the 2016 election and Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) were also targets of this operation. Both sides were targeted. The meddling allegation is not in dispute. It’s this unholy alliance between Trump Tower and the Kremlin that rapidly falling apart and looking like an unhinged conspiracy theory that’s the issue for some (*cough* Democrats *cough* *cough*)
Deputy AG Rosenstein: "There is no allegation in this indictment that any American was a knowing participant in this illegal activity. There is no allegation in the indictment that the [Russians'] conduct altered the outcome of the 2016 election." https://t.co/oShWvKYDRW pic.twitter.com/IPXvuJDudg— CBS News (@CBSNews) February 16, 2018