Since Hillary Clinton’s election, the Left’s constant refrain has been that Russia worked with the Trump campaign in order to get Trump elected president. So far, there is no evidence of actual collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government; there is only evidence of willingness to collude between Donald Trump Jr. and go-betweens for the Russian government. Nor is there actual evidence that the Russians wanted Trump to win. There is evidence of Russian interference, but it seems to have taken the form of an effort to skew the election both ways — to compromise the Hillary Clinton and the Donald Trump campaigns.
And the Russians seem to have succeeded.
This week, in a little-noticed move, the Senate Judiciary Committee called on Bill Browder to testify. Browder is a financier who has been targeted by the Vladimir Putin regime. Browder testified, according to The Weekly Standard, that Fusion GPS, a Democrat-linked opposition research firm, arranged the meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and Russian lawyers. Furthermore, Browder stated:
Veselnitskaya, through Baker Hostetler, hired Glenn Simpson of the firm Fusion GPS to conduct a smear campaign against me and Sergei Magnitsky in advance of congressional hearings on the Global Magnitsky Act…
Browder says that Fusion GPS has been working for the Russian government. Glenn Simpson, founder of Fusion GPS, has refused to testify before Congress and asserted that he would invoke his Fifth Amendment rights, although he is now set to testify. Here’s Lee Smith of Tablet elaborating:
Add Fusion GPS’s contracts with Russian and Russian-linked entities together with the company’s role in compiling and distributing a defamatory dossier sourced to the Kremlin, and the idea that the Trump Dossier was a Kremlin information operation becomes quite plausible — with much of the U.S. media serving as the delivery mechanism for a poison dart aimed at the legitimacy of the American democratic system.
Fusion GPS has issued its own rather vague denial:
This statement does not deny connections with the Russian government, or explain why it compiled the “dossier” on Trump.
This blows up the entire Democratic narrative that Putin desperately wanted Trump to be president. Instead, Democrats now have to hope for actual evidence of collusion and they must acknowledge that the Russians were working to undermine election legitimacy from both sides. Any case they make that says more than that is simply not supportable at this point.