2016 Presidential Election

Jake Sullivan’s rethink

Featured image Jake Sullivan was a top adviser to Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Eight months after the election, he still isn’t over Clinton’s defeat. That’s understandable given the closeness of the election, its surprising outcome, and Sullivan’s view of the man who won it. But unlike many Clintonistas, and the candidate herself, Sullivan has managed to move beyond blaming James Comey and the Russians. According to the Washington Post’s Greg Jaffe, Sullivan is »

Too much of nothing

Featured image In her response to my comments on her recent Trump/Russia column, Mona Charen writes: “The Wall Street Journal story about a Republican operative seeking Hillary Clinton’s hacked emails through Russia and claiming that he was working with Mike Flynn is possibly significant.” Anything is possible, but it is highly unlikely. Mona links to Shane Harris’s June 29 Wall Street Journal story on which I commented here. Andrew McCarthy blew off »

Mona Charen: It’s not a witch hunt

Featured image My friend Mona Charen has sent me the following response to my nearby post “A witch hunt?” In my post I comment on her recent column “16 Things You Must Believe to Buy the ‘Witch Hunt’ Russia Narrative.” I want to give Mona the last word in this exchange and thank her for her response. Mona writes: Before plunging into your objections, Scott, I want to thank you for being »

A witch hunt?

Featured image Mona Charen is a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, a syndicated columnist and author of two best-selling books that I have found permanently relevant, Do-Gooders and Useful Idiots. She is also a friend whom I greatly admire for her honesty and integrity. Both NRO and Jewish World Review carry Mona’s column. In her most recent column, Mona set forth “16 Things You Must Believe »

Assess this

Featured image Did Putin prefer Trump in the presidential election of 2016? According to the intelligence report dated January 6, 2017, Putin not only preferred Trump to Clinton. He mounted a so-called influence campaign to put him over. The report is posted online here. Issued under the auspices of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the report is based on the intelligence and assessments of the CIA, the FBI and »

Let’s call the whole thing kollusion [with comment by Paul]

Featured image I wrote about the New York Times stories here and here reporting on Donald Trump, Jr.’s June 2016 meeting with the Russian lawyer in “The new meaning of collusion.” I focused on the latter story in a post early on Tuesday morning, before Trump Jr. released the email chain that the story described at second hand. Whatever the faults of the story, in retrospect I wrongly made light of it. »

Did Trump know about his son’s meeting?

Featured image Peter Baker of the New York Times presents a timeline that invites the reader to view Donald Trump, Jr.’s emails and meeting with the Russian lawyer as connected with other events occurring in the same time frame. The conclusion Baker thinks can, but not necessarily should, be drawn is that, his recent denial notwithstanding, the senior Trump knew about his son’s impending meeting with the Russian lawyer and thought the »

Lessons from the Veselnitskaya affair

Featured image It’s clear that Natalia Veselnitskaya pulled a bait-and-switch on Donald Trump, Jr. She induced him to a meeting with the promise of information that could be used against Hillary Clinton, but delivered no such information. Instead, she used the meeting to lobby the son of the presumptive Republican nominee for president on the supposed evils of the Magnitsky Act. That Act blacklists Russians who were determined to have engaged in »

This day in “collusion” hysteria

Featured image The mainstream media is in a state of ecstasy over the story of Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with that Russian lawyer. It’s easy to understand why. After months with nothing to feed on, the media now has a scrap. In this context, the meal feels like a feast. It certainly seems that way to Ruth Marcus. She declares, absurdly, that the Trump Jr. emails “could hardly be more incriminating.” I »

How did that Russian lawyer get to stay in the U.S.?

Featured image Natalia Veselnitskaya is the Russian lawyer who met with Donald Trump, Jr. at Trump Tower in June 2016. Trump, Jr. met with her because he thought she might have information damaging to Hillary Clinton. Apparently, she had none and wanted to talk instead about the Magnitsky Act, about which more later. These facts are well known to anyone who has been following the news recently. What’s less known is that »

No collusion by Trump Jr., but not much candor either

Featured image It’s my view that the stories about Donald Trump, Jr. meeting with a Russian lawyer in the hope of obtaining negative information about Hillary Clinton or the Democratic party do not state a case of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians. Nor do they suggest wrongdoing on the part of Trump, Jr. However, the stories do raise concerns of a different type. The first concern arises from Trump, »

The media remains all screwed up on collusion

Featured image I planned to call my first post of the day “The Shifting Meaning of Collusion.” Then I saw the title of Scott’s post. That’s the disadvantage of waking up at 10:00 in the morning rather than five hours earlier. But I want to amplify Scott’s point. Claims of “collusion” between the Trump campaign and Russia arose in connection with Russian computer hacking. The hacking was the one significant set of »

The new meaning of collusion

Featured image Today the New York Times credits four reporters with the story advancing the latest installment of the “collusion” story involving the Trump campaign and a mysterious Russian lawyer. We are colluding in comedy. In today’s episode the Times reports that before Donald Trump, Jr. arranged a meeting with “a Kremlin-connected Russian lawyer he believed would offer him compromising information about Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump Jr. was informed in an email »

On collusion, the media is all screwed up

Featured image I want to add a few thoughts to Scott’s post about the meeting between Donald Trump, Jr. and a Russian lawyer who said she had damaging information about Hillary Clinton. The damaging information reportedly had to do with Russian funding of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton. The main point I want to make is that there is nothing wrong with such a meeting and such discussions, though in »

Yesterday in collusion revisited

Featured image On Saturday afternoon the New York Times posted the story that Donald Trump, Jr. had met with a Russian lawyer in June 2016 along with Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort. Trump issued a statement that the meeting was “primarily about” issues of adoption. Trump explained: “I was asked to attend the meeting by an acquaintance, but was not told the name of the person I would be meeting with beforehand.” »

Clearing up Acosta’s confusion

Featured image On Thursday evening CNN’s Jim Sciutto tried to clear up the confusion of his colleague Jim Acosta about the number of intelligence agencies that collaborated on the assessment of Russian meddling in the election. The assessment derived from the report released on January 6 that is posted online here. The report expressly states that the analytic assessment was “drafted and coordinated among The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), The Federal Bureau »

Today in collusion

Featured image It’s been all quiet on the mainstream media’s “collusion” front since Shane Harris’s laughable Wall Street Journal’s articles last Friday and Saturday. Andrew McCarthy took up Harris’s contribution in “‘Collusion’ as farce: The hunt for Hillary’s hackers.” You have to wonder if anyone on the news side of the Journal is capable of embarrassment. Today, however, the New York Times mounts another offensive on the “collusion” front. Jo Becker, Matt »