November 30, 2021

Joe Scarborough and David Frum talked about the active denial we see about Russian interference in the 2016 election by people who still want to score points off Hillary Clinton and media institutions. Frum has a new piece in The Atlantic called "It Wasn't A Lie" and says that the people who refuse to accept Russia's part in the election are pushing Trump's biggest lie.

Scarborough read from the Senate Intelligence committee report on Russian interference, which conveniently disappeared in the daily media storm of Trump news when it was first released.

" 'Taken as a whole, Manafort's high-level access and willingness to share information with the closely affiliated intelligence services represented a grave counterintelligence threat.' That's the Republican Senate intel committee chaired by Marco Rubio, saying Manafort's position on the Trump campaign and the back and forth with individuals closely affiliated with Russian intelligence services represented a, quote, 'grave intelligence threat to the United States of America.'

"Here's some more light reading," Scarborough said.

"The committee found that Russian president Vladimir Putin ordered the Russian effort to hack computer networks and accounts affiliated with the Democratic party and leak information damaging to Hillary Clinton and her campaign for president. Moscow's intent was to harm the Clinton campaign, tarnish an expected Clinton presidential administration, and help Trump's campaign after Trump became the presumptive Republican nominee, and undermine the U.S. democratic process." So said Marco Rubio's Senate intel committee, run by Republicans.

"On the man who kicked off the federal investigation into the 2016 Trump campaign, by the way, not Steele, but the man who actually kicked it off? The committee found that Papadopoulos likely learned about the Russian active measures campaign as early as April 2016 with Joseph Mifsud, a Maltese academic with Russian ties, well before and public awareness confirmation of the Russian effort. They found Papadopoulos communicated the information he learned from Mifsud to at least two separate foreign governments.

"The committee could not confirm that Papadopoulos informed anyone in the Trump campaign of the information, though the committee finds it implausible that Papadopoulos did not do so. On June 16, 2016 meeting, that meeting with Russians offering dirt on Hillary Clinton, this is what the intel committee with the chairman wrote:

"The committee assesses that at least two participants in the June 9, 2016 meeting have significant connections to the Russian government, including the Russian intelligence services." And about Wikileaks: 'Trump and senior campaign officials sought to obtain advance information about Wikileaks planned releases through Roger Stone. At their direction, Stone took action to gain inside knowledge for the campaign and shared his purported knowledge directly with Trump and senior campaign officials on multiple occasions.

" 'Trump and the campaign believed that Stone had inside information and expressed satisfaction that Stone's information suggested more releases would be forthcoming. The Trump campaign undermined the attribution of the hack-and-leak campaign, and was indifferent to whether it or Wikileaks were furthering a Russian election interference effort.

"So sayeth the Republican Senate intel committee report on Russian threats to American democracy. So David, in the words of Aristotle, anybody suggesting that this Russian thing was a hoax? They're just spreading horsesh*t," Scarborough concluded.

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