This Russia/Election/Trump story is not going anywhere anytime soon.
Potential illegal ties and communications with the Russian Federation are sticking to the Trump administration like a cheap suit.
I don't know Putin, have no deals in Russia, and the haters are going crazy – yet Obama can make a deal with Iran, #1 in terror, no problem!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 7, 2017
No matter how hard they try, despite the claims of “fake news”, the fact remains that there is mounting evidence that the current President of the United States was boosted into office by a foreign power in Russia that has violated international law at the expense of the United States on a routine basis.
Vladimir Putin sees the United States as his white whale, a foe that he dreams of conquering.
He realizes that attacking America directly will result in the destruction of his dictatorship, so he has opted to pressure us from within.
His weapon of choice has been Donald Trump, and the President has failed to convince America that he isn’t in league with the Russian demagogue.
Trump first raised eyebrows with his constant praise of Putin as both a leader, and a man, even remarking that he was a better leader than Barack Obama.
Now Vice President Mike Pence, doubled down on this assertion, and he should not be allowed to distance himself from those remarks.
In fact, Trump showed much more respect for the Russian President than the American President, it became a staple of his campaign.
Then there was the issue of the wikileaks, and the email dumps that set the tone for Trump’s entire platform.
The leaked DNC emails were his primary ammunition against Secretary Clinton, he constantly made reference to the leaks as the basis for his mandate to be President of the United States.
At a news conference in Florida last summer, Trump even asked the Russian hackers to continue to dredge up information.
From a distance, Trump’s pro Russian stance seemed suspicious, but the situation did not attain substance until just before the election.
The Russians celebrated, toasting Trump’s election as some type of diplomatic achievement, and then the Kremlin admitted that they had been in touch with Trump’s campaign once they felt the coast was clear.
The Kremlin attempted to downplay it, saying that they also had reached out to the Clinton campaign, but nobody truly believed Russia’s claim if you consider the relationship between Clinton and Putin.
Because that’s what this was about.
Not only did Russia seek to regain cold war era prominence, but they also wanted to damage Secretary Clinton.
Clinton encouraged political dissidence during the controversial 2011 Russian elections, and Putin has been salty towards the United States ever since.
This was his revenge.
In the weeks and months that followed, we kept hearing whispers of President Trump’s involvement with the Russians, but it was all rumors.
Buzzfeed ran the actual document, CNN published only what they could verify.
Under the supervision of a respected former British intelligence officer named Christopher Steele, the document spun a narrative that implicated the Trump administration, the Russians, and the general election in a conspiracy that would be among the more sophisticated and impactful of scandals of all time.
The veracity of the document was the subject incredible scrutiny, some of the claims within the dossier seemed less than credible because they were so unbeliveable.
Alleged sex videos and clandestine meetings in Prague.
But the bottom line allegations were bomb shell material.
The document indicated that Trump’s administration was colluding with the Russian government, and that the Kremlin has some sort of leverage over the President.
The document alleges that the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) has kompromat on Trump – damaging or embarrassing material which could be used to blackmail him, including allegations about Trump’s sexual and financial activities in Russia. The dossier also states that the Russian government promoted Trump’s candidacy to create divisions in Western alliances, and that during his presidential campaign there was exchange of information between Russian sources and people associated with Trump’s campaign.
The fallout from the dossier was considerable, and it just so happened to hit the airwaves just before Trump’s first news conference as the President elect.
That news conference certainly looms large in retrospect, and could come back to haunt Trump if the situation develops further.
Trump issued an arrogant and stern denial while questioning the journliastic integrity of the entire American press core.
Up until this news conference, Trump had also denied Russian involvement presidential campaign multiple times, and he did this after the intelligence community confirmed Russian involvement in the various security breaches that plagued political instituttions over the course of an entire year.
Trump attacked the intelligence community over the very assertion that the Russians assisted him in getting elected, in fact, he attacked anyone under the sun that broached the possibility of the Kremlin infiltrating the American electorate.
— Nancy Pelosi (@NancyPelosi) February 11, 2017
About two weeks prior to all of this, Presient Barack Obama levied sanctions against the Russian Federation as punishment for their brazen actions during the election.
The sanctions were mostly symbolic, the objective was too point the finger at Vladimir Putin’s government, and put an American intelligence stamp on it.
Plenty of rumors followed, but nothing seemed to come out of the flurry of activity just before Trump took office.
That all changed last week.
First, National security advisor Michael Flynn shockingly backed off his claim that he did not discuss Obama’s addtional sanctions against Russia with a top Kremlin official before President Trump took office.
In so many words, he lied like the day is long.
— CNN (@CNN) February 10, 2017
The Washington Post cited 9 different sources that indicated Flynn had been dishonest about his conversations with his Russian counterpart.
A story with 9 sources if a far cry from fake news, in fact, a credible report only needs 3 sources.
The alleged exchange was a gross violation of the Logan Act, and an indicitment on the credibility of the Trump administration.
President Trump has attempted to sweep it under the rug, diverting public attention in 5 different directions but failing to address the actions of the man charged with the security of this country.
Flynn has refused all interviews, although he did lie to the Washington Post when questioned about it, which has put his political career in serious peril.
— CNN (@CNN) February 10, 2017
The Flynn development startled America, and before the country had an opportunity to catch it’s breath, CNN filed a report indicating that elements of the Russian dossier had been corroborated by US investigators, and multiple news outlets reported that the document was gaining credibility with law enforcement.
There had already been public concern over the fact that Trump had not been totally cleared by investigators of having pre-election ties to Russia, so it was counter productive that instead of him being absolved of anyway wrong doing, the American people were being informed that the allegations against his administration were accumlating merit.
Trump has given the story added intrigue with his troubling Super Bowl interview with Bill O’Reilly, and his stubborn refusal to release his tax returns that could easily provide a link to the Russian government.
The tax returns are clearly a source of consernation with the Senate as well as the the intelligence community, and the inaction of the IRS to address the situation in any fashion lends credence to the belief that something is wrong here.
The IRS has been dead silent, they technically don’t have to do anything, but there is limits to the scope of their power, they are a cog in the federal government, not an absolute authority.
— Anderson Cooper 360° (@AC360) February 14, 2017
There is no absolute authority in the US government, that is the beauty of our system.
The IRS may not release the tax returns, but they certainly can foward them to concerned investigators if the nation’s security is at stake.
Which it is.
There is no question that the intelligence community is already in possession of Trump’s taxes if they are halfway competent, but for whatever reason, they are refusing to admit it.
They also have yet to assure the American people that Trump’s returns contain no link to the Kremlin.
If you consider Trump’s track record in regards to Russia, the release and the quasi verfiication of the dossier, Michael Flynn’s alleged illegal assurances to a Kremlin official before Trump took office, and the revelation that investigators had obtained the most powerful warrant in American justice to pace the investigation, what we have here is a potential clamity.
As disgusting as his politics can be, nobody reading this wants to believe that the President of the United States is a high profile agent of the Russian government, and that he has lied on the record about it, and gone to great lengths to confuse the American people while attacking federal judges and the freedom of the press.
Nobody reading this wants to believe that Trump spearheaded an external attack on democracy, and our electoral process.
We all want to believe that this investigation is baseless, that our election was not comprimised, and at no point was the sitting President of the United States in bed with a hostile Russian administration.
In a perfect world, the latter would rule the day, and we could all focus on the domestic issues that are tearing our country apart.
Such as the prospect of a second immigration ban potentially happening this week.
— CNN (@CNN) February 12, 2017
But we don’t live in that world, Trump’s lack of transparency has brought us to where we are.
As of now, President Trump has not earned the benefit of the doubt, because of his own actions, American is not obligated to believe him.
We have earned the right to draw our own conclusions until further notice.