On his radio program Thursday, Rush Limbaugh addressed the story that’s been consuming the media for the last 24 hours: Michael Cohen’s plea deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller related to discussions in 2016 of a “Moscow Trump Tower.” The latest developments and the media blitz over the “bombshell” plea deal prompted Limbaugh to ask his audience to step back and remember something Trump’s critics in the media want them to forget: What started off as an investigation into what we were led to believe was complex, wide-ranging, coordinated collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians has devolved into the nothingburger Trump Tower meeting and questions about Trump trying to work out a legal business deal in Moscow.
“When you hear the term ‘Russian collusion’ or ‘Trump collusion with Russia on the election,’ when you hear any reference to the story — and I want to you to think back the entire two years. I want you to remember how your mind has been shaped on this, because this is the purpose of this exercise,” said Limbaugh. “I want you to go back and remember shortly after the election when The New York Times and The Washington Post and CNN every day had at least one story and maybe more featuring unnamed sources from the intelligence community. And they were leaking, they were implying that there was deep collusion between the Trump campaign, maybe Trump himself personally and Russia, for the purposes of what? Stealing an election, for the purposes of sabotaging Mrs. Clinton’s campaign, for the purposes of winning the presidency.”
“The purpose of the news reports the last two years has been to convince as many people as possible that Trump had an ongoing secret relationship with the Russians — could have been with Putin, could have been anybody — and the purpose of this ongoing relationship was to win the 2016 election using sabotage from the Russians to harm the campaign of Mrs. Clinton,” he said. “Is this basically not what they tried to make us all think happened? Is that not what collusion was said to mean?”
To prove his point that the media’s portrayal of this “collusion” was something far more extensive and sinister, Limbaugh cited a recent Economist-YouGov poll which found that 42% of the American people believe Russians actually tampered with votes. “That is what collusion with Russia has come to mean to the American people, precisely because that is how the story was reported,” he said.
Flashforward to now and what Mueller is actually looking into is the already reported Trump Tower meeting, questions about when Trump was legally considering a project in Moscow, and conspiracy theorists associated with Trump potentially having some inside knowledge about what WikiLeaks may or may not release at some point about the Clinton campaign.
“Where is the tampering of votes? Where is the meetings? Where is the strategy? Where is the evidence that Trump got together with Russians to sabotage the Hillary campaign? Which is what everybody has been led to believe happened here,” said Limbaugh. “And now we’re down to a disagreement over a meeting in Trump Tower on June the 9th of 2016.”
The testimony that Mueller is using to build his case against Trump, Limbaugh pointed out, is based on guys with major credibility problems. “We haven’t found an honest perp anywhere in this whole sordid tale,” he said. Meanwhile, there’s been zero evidence of the collusion we were led to believe had taken place.
“We haven’t found anybody that has anything to do with Russian collusion,” he said. “We haven’t found anything on anybody who had anything to do with rigging an election. We haven’t found anybody, there is nobody who had [any] involvement with tampering with votes in the 2016 election — zilch, zero, nada.”
He continued: “Robert Mueller has nothing because there is nothing on what everybody in this country has been misled to believe for the past two years, that the election of 2016 was illegitimate, because Trump cheated with help from the Russians. Mueller doesn’t have that evidence because it doesn’t exist.”
“Now they have to try to establish collusion in some other way, and this Trump Tower meeting and its timeline is the one example, the one and only example of collusion,” he said at the conclusion of the segment. “Even if Trump met with somebody in Moscow to build a building, even if the meeting in Trump Tower, he knew about it or didn’t know about it, the fact the meeting happened has nothing to do with collusion and affecting the outcome of an election. Collusion isn’t a crime.”
Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz made a similar argument on Fox News Thursday. Mueller’s entire case appears to be founded on “false statement prosecutions,” the lawyer pointed out, rather than evidence of legitimate collusion or meddling.
“I think the weakness of Mueller’s substantive findings are suggested by the fact that he has to resort to false statement prosecutions, which really shows that he didn’t start with very much, and that the very fact that he’s conducting an investigation has created these crimes,” said Dershowitz. “These are not crimes that had been committed prior to his appointment, they’re crimes that were committed as the result of his appointment, and that raises some questions about the role of special prosecutors in creating crimes, or creating opportunities for crimes to be committed… In the end, I don’t think Mueller’s going to come up with very much, in terms of criminal conduct, that existed before he was appointed, and that’s pretty shocking.”
Transcript via RushLimbaugh.com