03.13.2018 0

No Trump-Russia collusion and there never was any

By Robert Romano

Not even Saturday Night Live believes there was any collusion between President Donald Trump and Russia to win the 2016 election.

In a surprisingly candid skit featuring Kate McKinnon playing Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who is in the process of breaking up with his “girlfriend,” Becca K., who represents Democrats expecting the President to be charged by Mueller with espionage or treason with Russia. The segment was a spoof of the reality television show The Bachelor.

When Becca senses a breakup in the works, she demands to know, “So, what? You don’t have Trump on collusion?”

“I can’t commit to collusion right now,” Mueller says, with the girlfriend going through various stages of grief over President Trump remaining in power.

When Mueller suggests he perhaps wants to pursue obstruction of justice instead as an alternative path, Becca draws the line, saying, “Collusion is literally the only thing I’ve been looking forward to for the past year… I’m done.” And then she storms off for short while.

Upon returning, Becca still cannot believe Trump will remain in power: “So, that’s it? He’s just going to be president?… I have to wait two more years for him to be out of office.”

To which, Mueller warns, “Honestly, probably six.”

At the end of the segment, Mueller states, “I feel like we just need to come together as a country right now, and like, stop hoping for things that might not happen.”

Here, via pop cultural icon Saturday Night Live, is an obviously political message. It indicates that the mainstream media and more broadly Democrats have given up hope that there ever was anything to do with Trump-Russia collusion narrative, and the perhaps insurmountable difficulties politically in attempt create a bridge to other accusations such as obstruction, when the first string of allegations was false.

The well-timed skit comes as the House Select Committee on Intelligence prepares to release its findings that there was no such collusion by Trump.

The original allegations by Fusion GPS and former British spy Christopher Steele — paid for by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Clinton campaign — were that the Trump campaign had helped Russia hack the DNC emails and put them on Wikileaks. The dossier, which did not name its sources, produced no evidence to support its contentions. Nonetheless the Obama Justice Department used the dossier to get a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court warrant to spy on the Trump campaign.

After Trump won the election, the Justice Department doubled and tripled down on its investigation, setting the stage to carry it over in the Trump administration after he was sworn into office in Jan. 2017.

All to prove what we now know was a lie, produced by the Clinton campaign to give it an extra talking point on the campaign trail, and then dangled as some means of delegitimizing the election of President Trump and ultimately somehow unseating him.

Now, more than a year into Trump’s presidency and almost a year into Mueller’s investigation, and the collusion narrative has fallen to pieces as the American people learned of the political origins of the investigation and the absolute political perversion of the U.S. national security apparatus and FISA court.

We still know almost nothing about who Steele’s sources were — if they even existed. Did they represent Russian government interests? If so, then apparently it was the Clinton campaign and then, ironically, the FBI that coordinated with Russian intelligence operatives to undermine the election and then our democratic system as a whole.

On the other hand, so far, nobody has named any Russian government officials used by Steele that the public can evaluate to determine if they were in a position to know the things the dossier alleges they knew. As the dossier is written, it offers second and third-hand unverifiable accounts. It had Trump in a Moscow hotel room with prostitutes at a beauty pageant in 2013. It had former Trump campaign advisor going to Moscow in 2016 on instructions of then-campaign manager Paul Manafort to work on the Wikileaks disclosures. It had Trump Organization attorney Michael Cohen traveling to Prague afterward to deal with the fallout of the conspiracy. The latter of these was directly proven to be inaccurate based upon passport and other verified documentation.

Was any of it real, or was the nation deliberately led on a false trail?

As a result, the credibility of the investigation, and federal investigators, is in tatters. This witch hunt was initiated under false pretenses. And anything that comes out of it will forever be tainted as being fruit of the poisoned tree: A politically engineered national security investigation into the opposition party during an election year.

When the original collusion couldn’t be proven, the President’s opponents tried to “move on” to a different narrative that Trump had somehow obstructed the tainted investigation by professing his innocence and attempting to lead the country forward.

In the meantime, there was no collusion. There was no obstruction.

This big lie was simultaneously every bit as evil as Nazi attempts in the 1930s to label Jews and others in Germany as foreign collaborators and as idiotic as the birther movement that former President Barack Obama’s birth certificate was somehow falsified by Hawaii state officials to hide the “truth” of his birth overseas.

And it takes Saturday Night Live to tell the nation what most of us already know, which is that “we need to come together as a country right now, and like, stop hoping for things that might not happen.”

So, here it is, for those still deluding themselves. There is no Trump-Russia collusion and there never was any. Donald Trump won the election. He is the President. And he is going to serve out his term and maybe even win another four-year term after that. Get over it.

Robert Romano is the Vice President of Public Policy at Americans for Limited Government.

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