Did Trump campaign work with Russia? Time and FBI will tell

News to help you shmooze



FBI Director James Comey told Congress yesterday that possible Trump campaign connections to Russian intelligence were being investigated, but experts said results would be a long time coming.

By Jacob Feitelberg, Outside News Editor

FBI Director James Comey testified in Congress March 20 that his agency is investigating whether members of Trump’s campaign worked with Russia to defeat Hillary Clinton. But don’t expect an answer in time for the next issue of the Boiling Point.

Counterintelligence investigations take a very long time, according to the New York Times, so this investigation might continue for years.

American intelligence agencies are certain that President Vladimir Putin of Russia covertly gave orders to try to hurt Mrs. Clinton’s campaign by hacking into the Democratic National Committee and releasing thousands of emails from Ms. Clinton’s personal email server onto WikiLeaks. So the question is not whether Russia was involved, but whether Trump campaign officials were helping.

Mr. Comey also said there was no evidence that Russian hackers had changed any votes in the presidential election.  So whatever the investigation finds, it will be open to debate whether Russia had any influence on the election in terms of actual votes. This depends on whether Mrs. Clinton lost votes because of the hacked emails.

The White House dismissed the possibility, saying there was no coordination between Russia and members of the Trump campaign. President Trump maintained that his alleged ties to Russia during the campaign were fabricated to undermine his presidency, according to Whitehouse.gov.

But it has also admitted that various campaign officials, including former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, former campaign official (now Attorney General) Jeff Sessions and several others had contacts with Russian officials during and immediately after the campaign.

Rep. Adam Schiff of Pasadena, the highest ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said there were too many coincidences for that to be likely.

“Is it possible that all of these events and reports are completely unrelated and nothing more than an entirely unhappy coincidence?” said Representative Adam B. Schiff of California, the intelligence committee’s top Democrat, at the hearing. “Yes, it is possible. But it is also possible, maybe more than possible, that they are not coincidental, not disconnected and not unrelated.”

Meanwhile, Mr. Comey also told the House Intelligence Committee that he had no evidence that supported President Trump’s allegations against Obama.
As of now, it is still possible that all of the dealings individuals on the Trump campaign had with Russia were unrelated and not about the presidential campaign, because there is no evidence yet pointing either way.