So by now, you’ve probably seen the Democrats’ latest “bombshell” revelation about Trump and Russia. Hot on the heels of their meaningless criticism of the president’s meeting with Putin in Germany, the New York Times and Washington Post tag-teamed on a story showing that Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort met with a “Kremlin-linked” attorney last summer. Reportedly, the three were lured to the meeting with the promise of some information that would be damaging to the Clinton campaign, therefore providing investigators with the “fire” behind all the smoke. Here it is, they said! Here’s the proof that the Trump campaign was willing to use whatever means necessary – including Russian government officials – to get ahead in the race for the White House!
First of all, let’s just take the stories at face value. Because unlike earlier fake news revelations, the papers seem to have gotten their facts carefully straight this time. That may change as we learn more (it wouldn’t surprise us, certainly) but for now, let’s give them the credit they’re due. Let’s assume that every word printed in the story is true, which is a little easier seeing as how – as of Monday – neither the White House nor the players involved are specifically denying any factual aspects of the reporting. So fine. Let’s just take the story as it is.
There’s still nothing there.
What are the facts? Well, the three men met with a lawyer who has some sort of dubious connection to the Putin government. They met her because she promised to share something damning about Hillary.
So what? Are we to believe that if this lawyer reached out to Chelsea Clinton, John Podesta, and Huma Abedin with the promise of dirt on Trump, they would tell her to take a hike. With the way they mismanaged her campaign, we actually wouldn’t be surprised, but there’s nothing other than abject incompetence that would keep them from trying to get their grubby little hands on some oppo material. So to sit there and play the moralists now is just a bit too rich.
Secondly, the meeting is supposed to have happened on June 9. Now correct us if we’re wrong, but this was BEFORE anyone suspected the Russians of being behind the DNC hack, correct? In fact, we’re pretty sure it was prior to the original WikiLeaks release. So there’s another reason to absolve Kushner, Manafort, and Trump Jr. of responsibility. They had no idea what kind of “information” this lawyer might have for them. They were just fishing around to see what might be out there. Dirty politics? Maybe. But did Donald Trump ever make a pretense of fighting above the fray? We submit that he did not.
The point is now as it has always been: THERE IS NO CRIME HERE. Nothing even RESEMBLING a crime. This is, at most, a story the Democrats can use in their political ads. And that’s fine. Go for it. If the American people think it’s a problem, they’ll speak out in the elections to come. But to make believe that this is a brick on the path to impeachment or some harbinger of criminal charges…it’s just too much to take.