At this point, whether or not Russia meddled in the 2016 United States presidential election is not in doubt. It’s not a question. The question is what crimes members of the Trump campaign committed in order to aid the Russian effort.
Of course, if you’re Donald Trump, you live in a totally different reality. Trump, who has gone out of his way to establish himself as a Putin bootlicker, never has an unkind word for Russia. If his own entire intelligence apparatus tells him one thing, and Putin tells him another, who do you think he will believe? The answer is Russia. CNN has more:
‘Trump said he took Putin at his word that Russia did not seek to interfere in the US presidential election last year, despite a finding from US intelligence agencies that it did. The fraught relations between the two leaders was underscored anew when Putin’s spokesman said election meddling did not come up when they spoke, even though Trump said it did.
‘And he stressed that bigger issues persist between the United States and Russia that require the two leaders to move on.
‘”He said he didn’t meddle. He said he didn’t meddle. I asked him again. You can only ask so many times,” Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One as he flew from Da Nang to Hanoi in Vietnam. Trump spoke to Putin three times on the sidelines of summit here, where the Russia meddling issue arose.
‘”That whole thing was set up by the Democrats,” Trump declared.’
Unfortunately for Trump and his efforts to spread Russian propaganda, the facts tell a different story. On numerous, separate occasions, Russian agents attempted to influence the election. Russians made huge ad purchases on Twitter and Facebook, paid for in rubles, to try and influence specific political audiences. Russians hacked the DNC and released doctored emails. Russians reached out repeatedly to coordinate efforts with the Trump campaign, speaking to nearly everyone on Trump’s senior staff, many of whom went on to lie about those contacts.
Once again, the question is no longer “did Russia meddle.” The answer to that question is a definitive “yes.” The only reasonable denial Trump can make is that there was no collusion. When he says he “believes Putin” when Putin says there was no meddling, what he actually means is “I’m guilty, it’s all true.” There’s not really another good explanation.
Trump knows Putin is lying. Even if there were no collusion, he knows Putin is lying. He knows this because of multiple Russian attempts to contacts his campaign, offers of information to his inner circle, etc. This is all public record and undisputed at this point. Even Trump is not so blind and stupid as to really “believe” Putin.
And if that’s not the case, it begs the question: Why is Trump so determined to reinforce Russian foreign policy and Russian interests at the expense of our own nation?
Americans took to social media to share their displeasure with comrade Trump:
Again Trump on Putin "vehemently" denying meddling. Has this tweet aged well? https://t.co/JSriybVfnJ
— Preet Bharara (@PreetBharara) November 11, 2017
Trump doesn’t care about facts or reality. He doesn’t care about our nation. He doesn’t have the intelligence to process facts and arrive at a reasonable conclusion, and wouldn’t do it even if he did – Trump is only interested in himself. If you don’t offer him a benefit, have power over him, or slavishly worship him constantly, he doesn’t care about you. Every time he stands up for Putin, he proves it.
Featured image via Getty Images