At the end of a nearly two year investigation, special counsel Robert Mueller made clear that Russia engaged in “multiple, systematic efforts to interfere in our election.” President Donald Trump, however, doesn’t see it that way. He argued Wednesday night that this type of attack was “not an interference,” and when asked about what he would do if he was offered information about an opponent from a foreign country again, Trump said, “I think I’d take it.” This should come as little surprise. The Trump campaign eagerly welcomed such assistance in the last election; all told, the campaign staff, transition staff and their associates had more than 270 contacts with Russia-linked operatives during the campaign and transition — which they then desperately sought to hide from the press, the public and even law enforcement.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report may be the most damning document ever released about an American president. It outlines clear efforts to obstruct justice and is a seemingly exhaustive catalogue of Trump campaign contacts with Russian actors, all while Russia waged a “sweeping and systemic” attack on our political system. But the report barely mentions one incredibly important subject: money. Yet following the money is critical to the Russia investigation.
The Senate Intelligence Committee’s subpoena—approved by Republican Senator Richard Burr—for Donald Trump Jr. to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee marks the first known instance of Congress subpoenaing one of the president’s children. What seems entirely possible is that Trump Jr. lied to Congress when he testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on September 7, 2017. And among the questions that remain unanswered: Why didn’t Mueller interview Trump Jr.?
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s floor speech yesterday declaring the Russia investigation “case closed” reveals just how much Trump and his defenders are panicking. McConnell has consistently used his position of power to cover for the president and block meaningful inquiry into Russia’s attack on the United States when it was politically inconvenient for Trump. So it’s not surprising that when a report was released outlining the Trump campaign’s continuous contacts with Russian operatives and the administration’s efforts to obstruct an investigation into those contacts, McConnell once again began running interference for Trump.