Future historians may one day write that it’s what didn’t happen that played at least as great a role in electing Donald Trump President as what actually did.
There were at least four instances where intervention by Federal law enforcement authorities could have utterly changed the outcome of the 2016 election.
Two of these dealt with purely domestic issues–the Trump University scandal and Trump’s repeated threats of violence against Republican and Democratic opponents.
The third and fourth ones dealt with events directly affecting the security of the United States.
It is unprecedented for an American Presidential candidate to repeatedly bestow fulsome praise on the leader of a foreign power hostile to the United States. And to receive equally fawning compliments in return from that leader.
Yet that is precisely what has happened between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin.
Thus Putin on Trump: “He is a bright personality, a talented person, no doubt about it. It is not up to us to appraise his positive sides, it is up to the U.S. voters. but, as we can see, he is an absolute leader in the presidential race.”
And Trump on Putin: “It is always a great honor to be so nicely complimented by a man so highly respected within his own country and beyond. He’s running his country, and at least he’s a leader. Unlike what we have in this country”–a clear attack on President Barack Obama.
Case #3: The Justice Department did not invalidate the results of the 2016 election, despite overwhelming evidence that Russia intervened to elect Trump as Vladimir Putin’s chosen candidate.
- Admiral Michael Rogers, director of the National Security Agency (NSA) and US Cyber Command, said in mid-November that Russia made “a conscious effort” to sway the results of the Presidential election by the hacking of 20,000 emails from the Democratic National Committee.
- “There shouldn’t be any doubt in anybody’s mind,” said Rogers. “This was not something that was done casually. This was not something that was done by chance. This was not a target that was selected purely arbitrarily. This was a conscious effort by a nation-state to attempt to achieve a specific effect.”
- The Russians hacked the Democratic committee’s servers–but not those of the Republican National Committee.
- On December 16, FBI Director James B. Comey and Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr. agreed with a CIA assessment that Russia intervened in the 2016 election in part to help Donald Trump win the White House.
Trump, however, has steadfastly denied any such role by Russia: “I think it’s ridiculous,” he told “Fox News Sunday.” “I think it’s just another excuse. I don’t believe it….No, I don’t believe it at all.”
Case #4: The Justice Department did not prosecute Trump for treason, even though he solicited aid from Russia, a nation hostile to the United States. And no major official of the government–including President Obama–publicly condemned him as a traitor.
At a news conference in Doral, Florida on July 27, Trump publicly invited “Russia”–i.e., Vladimir Putin–to hack Hillary Clinton’s emails: “I will tell you this, Russia: If you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing. I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”
This was essentially treason–calling on a hostile foreign power to interfere directly in an American Presidential election. And it was seen as such by both Democrats and even Republicans.
- “This has to be the first time that a major presidential candidate has actively encouraged a foreign power to conduct espionage against his political opponent,” Hillary for America policy adviser Jake Sullivan said in a statement. “That’s not hyperbole, those are just the facts. This has gone from being a matter of curiosity, and a matter of politics, to being a national security issue.”
- “I find those kinds of statements to be totally outrageous because you’ve got now a presidential candidate who is, in fact, asking the Russians to engage in American politics,” said former CIA Director Leon Panetta, a Clinton surrogate. “I just think that’s beyond the pale.”
- Brendan Buck, a spokesman for House Speaker Paul Ryan, said: “Russia is a global menace led by a devious thug. Putin should stay out of this election.”
- Even Trump’s Vice Presidential running mate, Mike Pence, said: “If it is Russia and they are interfering in our elections, I can assure you both parties and the United States government will ensure there are serious consequences.”
FBI Director James Comey believed that Hillary Clinton’s emails on a private server were so dangerous to national security that he announced–11 days before the election–that he was re-opening an investigation he had closed.
That announcement erased widespread outrage over Trump’s unintended admissions of predatory behavior toward women–“Grab them by the pussy”–and reversed Clinton’s growing lead in the polls.
Yet the Bureau has not issued any such statements about the continuing reports of close ties between Trump and Putin, and Trump’s possible investments in Russia.
To their shame, the federal agencies charged with safeguarding America failed to take action against these abuses. And, to their shame, the news media, to date, has failed to indict them for their negligence.