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Mollie Hemingway Sets The Record Straight On Russian Collusion

Our friend Mollie Hemingway, senior editor at The Federalist and a Fox News contributor, recently spoke at Hillsdale College’s Allan P. Kirby, Jr. Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship. Her remarks were subsequently adopted for an article in Imprimis, the college’s monthly digest dedicated to educating citizens and promoting civil and religious liberty by covering cultural, economic, political, and educational issues.

With some 3,600,000 readers monthly, many CHQ readers will be familiar with Imprimis and its thought-provoking articles drawn from speeches delivered at Hillsdale by leading scholars, newsmakers and thought Russian collusionleaders, but Ms. Hemingway’s remarks were so important that we want to highlight them for you.

Ms. Hemingway began her remarks by stating the obvious: President Trump has been accused, not without reason, of breaking all manner of political norms. America’s most nontraditional president was never going to conduct business as usual from the West Wing, but the voters knew what they were voting for and history will be the judge of whether they chose wisely.

That said, wrote Hemingway, Trump’s nascent presidency has coincided with perhaps the greatest violation of political norms this country has ever seen—a violation that has nothing to do with Trump’s behavior.

Since the election last November, there has been a sustained, coordinated attack on Trump’s legitimacy as president following his victory in a free and fair election. This has the potential to cause far more lasting damage to America than Trump’s controversial style.

Democratic operatives and their media allies, said Hemingway, attempted to explain Trump’s victory with a claim they had failed to make stick during the general election: Trump had nefarious ties to Russia.

Hemingway pointed out that, according to Shattered, a well-sourced book about the Clinton campaign written by sympathetic reporters, Clinton settled on a Russia excuse within twenty-four hours of her concession speech. [Campaign manager Robby] Mook and Podesta assembled her communications team at the Brooklyn headquarters to engineer the case that the election wasn’t entirely on the up-and-up. For a couple of hours, with Shake Shack containers littering the room, they went over the script they would pitch to the press and the public. Already, Russian hacking was the centerpiece of the argument noted Hemingway.

The Russian collusion story involves a lot of details, observes Hemingway, but there are two basic tactics that Trump’s enemies have used to push the narrative: they have put seemingly innocuous contacts with Russians under a microscope, and they have selectively touted details supplied by a politicized intelligence apparatus. And this has all been amplified by a media that has lost perspective and refuses to be impartial, much less accurate.

Ms. Hemingway then relates in great detail the major points of this campaign to implant in the public’s mind what are not just differences of opinion, but outright lies, about Russian influence in the election, including:

The role of the Democrat-aligned opposition research firm known as Fusion GPS and its long history of manufacturing smears against political opponents of its Leftist clients.

The role of politicized intelligence and leaks from Obama appointees in the intelligence agencies to sympathetic Left-leaning media outlets and reporters.

The “unmasking” of Trump transition team members had occurred during the last three months of the Obama presidency.

The manipulations of James Comey and his testimony under oath that his leaks to The New York Times were designed to force the hiring of a special prosecutor.

The fact that no federal agency performed a forensic analysis of the allegedly hacked Democratic National Committee computers, leaving that to CrowdStrike—a company with strong ties to the Clinton campaign that had an incentive to blame foreign governments for the attack.

To date, said Hemingway, despite all the misleading claims in news reports, the only actual crime related to the Trump-Russia investigation is the criminal leaking of classified information about U.S. citizens by Obama-era intelligence officials.

Mollie Hemingway concluded her article for Imprimis with this incisive analysis that we think all CHQ readers should share with their friends – conservative, liberal or non-political:

There are three primary ways of viewing the Trump-Russia narrative.

View one is that Russians hacked the election and Donald Trump committed treason by knowingly colluding with them. The Obama administration didn’t surveil Trump or his associates, but if it did, it was simply doing its job.

View two is that Russia was probably involved in the hacking and releasing of emails from the DNC and John Podesta. Some Trump associates had ties to Russia, but there is no evidence of Trump or his campaign colluding with Russia.

View three is that the Russia story is a complete fiction concocted by sore losers unable to deal with the reality of their electoral loss.

It shouldn’t be difficult to ascertain which one of these views is most grounded in facts. Despite his friendly rhetoric toward Russia and Putin during the campaign, Trump’s presidency has been marked by a bombing of Russia-backed Syria, bombing of the Russia-aligned Taliban in Afghanistan, stricter enforcement of economic sanctions, support for the expansion of NATO, liquid natural gas exports to Europe that undercut Russia’s economy, the selling of U.S. missile defense to Poland and Romania, and opposition to the Russian-negotiated Iran nuclear deal.

In the meantime, the self-styled anti-Trump “resistance” has created a standard it must meet to justify the broken norms and political trauma to which it has subjected the country. That standard is nothing less than proof that Donald Trump is a traitor put into the White House through collusion with Russia to undermine our electoral system. The better part of a year into his presidency, Trump’s enemies have not come close to meeting that standard.

We urge all our friends and CHQ readers to go to Imprimis through this link and read “Russian Collusion” in its entirety, and then to thank Mollie Hemingway for being one of the few honest voices in Washington, DC’s media swamp by telling the truth about this unprecedented attack on the institution of the presidency perpetrated not by the Russians, but by the Obama – Clinton machine and their fellow travelers in the establishment media.

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