Exhausting claims of Russian collusion have hounded the Trump administration since his inauguration. Rather than being based upon factual evidence, the allegations are rooted almost entirely in contempt and utter disbelief that Trump won in 2016. Trump’s critics on the Left have sought to undermine President Trump from his very first day in office, building an ungainly narrative around a maze of speculation, with the media happily doing the heavy lifting. Much of that speculation has turned out to be either misleading or even demonstrably false, combining partisanship with the most basic abuse of logic. The allegations are, ultimately, a kind of wishful thinking for those who simply could not and will not concede defeat. Instead, they’ve chosen to smear a sitting president with unsubstantiated claims that now read like a bad fiction novel. Here are the major details which completely discredit the “Russian collusion” allegations.
The Mueller Report
Perhaps the most compelling point against any purported ties between Russia and the Trump administration is that Robert Mueller’s two-year-long, nearly $32 million investigation found zero evidence of collusion. That alone should put the entire story to rest.
“Special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation did not find sufficient evidence,” the American Bar Association reported, “that President Donald Trump’s campaign coordinated with Russia to influence the United States’ 2016 election and did not take a clear position on whether Trump obstructed justice.”
While the investigation concluded that Russia had meddled with the 2016 election on both sides of the political aisle, the Mueller report “did not find that the Trump campaign, or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in these efforts, despite multiple efforts from Russian-affiliated individuals to assist the Trump campaign.”
Glenn Greenwald of The Intercept provided a detailed summary of the investigation which obliterated the media’s constant “collusion” narrative:
Several of the media’s most breathless and hyped “bombshells” were dismissed completely by Mueller. Regarding various Trump officials’ 2016 meetings with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, Mueller said they were “brief, public and nonsubstantive.” Concerning the much-hyped change to the GOP platform regarding Ukraine, Mueller wrote that the “evidence does not establish that one campaign official’s efforts to dilute a portion of the Republican platform was undertaken at the behest of candidate Trump or Russia,” and further noted that such a change was consistent with Trump’s publicly stated foreign policy view (one shared by Obama) to avoid provoking gratuitous conflict with the Kremlin over arming Ukrainians. Mueller also characterized a widely hyped “meeting” between then-Senator Jeff Sessions and Kislyak as one that did not “include any more than a passing mention of the presidential campaign.”
The Mueller investigation was so bereft of any evidence concerning the “prevailing conspiracy theories” the media kept churning out “that it did not find even a single American whom it could indict or charge with illegally working for Russia, secretly acting as a Russian agent, or conspiring with the Russians over the election,” according to Greenwald.
Though Greenwald also asserts that Mueller’s findings “are fatal to the conspiracy theorists who have drowned U.S. discourse for almost three years,” it seems that the damage may have already been done. Recent polls suggest the narrative of collusion still holds considerable sway over many. “Nearly half of all Americans still believe President Donald Trump worked with Russia to interfere in the 2016 presidential election,” according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll done in 2019.
The FBI’s gross misconduct barely registers a blip on the media’s radar
While the allegations of conspiracy and collusion still target the Trump administration — even with all the evidence to the contrary — the media has all but dismissed the many alleged abuses and examples of misconduct committed by some members of the FBI — and, to a lesser extent, the CIA — in its dogged, partisan pursuit of President Trump.
“The mainstream media,” The Cato Institute recently reported, “not only continues to parrot the narrative that President Donald Trump is a Russian asset who collaborated with Moscow to steal the 2016 presidential election, but journalists have also minimized or dismissed evidence about FBI abuses during the course of the investigation into those allegations.”
Much of the misconduct is rooted in the many inaccuracies and contradictions found in the now-infamous Steele Dossier that ought to have been dismissed in its entirety.
Paul R. Gregory out of Stanford’s Hoover Institution insists that “Christopher Steele, was an opposition researcher paid by the Democrats to dig up dirt on Trump.” He also alleges that the FBI was a “knowing and willing part of the Democratic and media smear” on President Trump “that paralyzed U.S. politics for three years.”
“Instead of the trashcan,” Gregory continues, “the media and intelligence services pursued the Dossier ‘roadmap’ with diligence and selective leaks, although in April of 2017, Steele himself confirmed under oath that his claims are unverified. Of course they are, because who can verify the most intimate workings of rarified circles of Putin’s immediate entourage? This inconvenient fact, however, did not prevent Steele from trying to peddle his Dossier to the media, the state department, and sundry Trump opponents.”
Driving Gregory’s point home even further is the recent guilty plea of Kevin Clinesmith, a former lawyer for the FBI who was fired for his “anti-Trump messages” in 2018.
“Clinesmith, who worked at the FBI for four years,” according to USA Today, “is accused of altering an email in 2017 that investigators relied on to justify an application to wiretap [former Trump policy adviser Carter] Page, according to court records. The altered email indicated that Page was ‘not a source’ for the Central Intelligence Agency. The original email from the CIA indicated otherwise.”
The media, of course, all but ignored Clinesmith’s guilty plea as a story, “barely batt[ing] an eye…after providing wall-to-wall coverage of Michael Flynn’s plea deal with Robert Mueller in December 2017,” according to the National Review.
“But on her show Friday, [Rachel] Maddow,” the National Review continued, “who breathlessly covered ‘Russia-gate’ night after night for two years, totally ignored the Clinesmith news. And she wasn’t the only one. CNN’s Anderson Cooper failed to cover the plea deal during his two hours of Friday-night programming. Cooper’s colleague Don Lemon, who also covered the Russia probe and Flynn’s plea relentlessly, couldn’t find time to cover Clinesmith’s plea during his 10 p.m. time slot.”
John Brennan as “the main driver” behind the initial Trump-Russia probe
John Brennan, the former director of the CIA under Obama, who “couldn’t believe [Trump] had won,” continues to insinuate that the president colluded with Russia in his new book, Undaunted. His reasons are based almost entirely on an “uneasy feeling” and a “feeling that [Trump] couldn’t be trusted with American national security,” according to a recent interview with Brennan for The Atlantic.
Without a hint of irony, The Atlantic piece on Brennan once again submerges itself in debunked falsehoods and unfounded speculation:
“We’ve lived through four years of drips and leaks and reports and insinuations, but no single piece of information neatly explains what exactly we’ve been living through. Is it just a bunch of coincidences, overinterpreted bits of facts, and the Kremlin poking at our confusion, or is Trump part of some Russian plot? Does Putin have something on him? In his book, Brennan describes a days-long process of going through all the intelligence, the most-secret secrets, before calling the White House and saying he had to brief Obama on what he knew. He’s got to know.”
Brennan, of course, readily admits that “his distaste for the president goes back to the 1980s.” His dislike of the president aside, the former CIA director finally revealed that he’s working on not much other than mere suspicion, stating “I have my suspicions of things…[b]ut I think it would be unfair of me to just roll out my suspicions without doing the necessary review and the digging.”
If the assertions made by Andrew McCarthy for the National Review are accurate, “Brennan was the main driver” in the initial phase of the Trump-Russia probe. The former CIA director allegedly “took information from foreign services, put his own analytical spin on it, and packaged it for the FBI.”
McCarthy then summarized his own ongoing investigation into the whole Trump-Russia debacle with reasoned, provocative allegations of his own:
“The CIA — with the Obama White House…in the loop — wanted the FBI to act on Hillary Clinton’s unfounded allegation that Donald Trump had conspired with Russia to hack the DNC. And the FBI willingly obliged. Because it had no actual evidence implicating Trump in Russia’s cyberespionage operations, the FBI had to rely on the Clinton campaign-sponsored Steele dossier, which either made up that allegation out of whole cloth or based it on disinformation from a ‘primary subsource’ who, it turns out, the FBI suspected was a Russian asset.”
Collusion has become the never-ending story for the Left
Even with all the evidence proving that no collusion or conspiracy occurred, Trump’s critics continue to advance the notion that President Trump colluded with Russia.
In early October of this year, President Trump “ordered the declassification of all documents related to how the FBI and U.S. intelligence agencies investigated Russian interference in the 2016 presidential race,” AP News reported. Such transparency should have put an end to the story, particularly in addition to the Mueller report and other key findings.
However, Democrats continue to advance the notion that President Trump colluded with Russia, quickly spinning such moves as “political stunts” or “distractions” on the part of the administration.
“Democrats quickly called the move a political stunt in the middle of the president’s heated campaign to defeat Democrat Joe Biden in the Nov. 3 election,” according to AP News. “Moreover, intelligence professionals blasted John Ratcliffe, the director of national intelligence and a Trump loyalist, for going along with the declassification, saying it was a flagrant example of using intelligence for political purposes.”
These “intelligence professionals” may very well be the same unnamed individuals who pushed the Steele Dossier out into the open as supposed “evidence” of collusion, or those who still harbor similar antagonism toward President Trump.
When we consider these indisputable facts, it becomes clear that the collusion narrative is a calculated and coordinated campaign among Democrats, the media, and some members of the intelligence community to actively and intentionally undermine a sitting president.