Friday, April 27, 2018
House Intelligence Committee Republicans released a redacted version of their final report from a year-long probe of Russia’s “multifaceted” influence operation, generally clearing President Trump and his associates of wrongdoing while accusing the intelligence community and the FBI of failures in how they assessed and responded to the Kremlin’s interference in the 2016 election.
The report charges the intelligence community with “significant intelligence tradecraft failings,” suggesting, without saying explicitly, that Russia’s main goal was to sow discord in the United States and not to help Trump win the election. It says investigators found “no evidence that the Trump campaign colluded, coordinated, or conspired with the Russian government,” even as it details contacts between campaign officials and Russians or Russian intermediaries.
The real news here isn’t the report itself. The report is so glaringly divorced from reality as to be laughable. The real news is that this report isn’t from the House Intelligence Committee. The report is from the Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee. The traditional bipartisan nature of the House Intelligence Committee has completely broken down. It is but one of many traditional norms on which our democracy rests which has utterly dissolved in the withering onslaught of Trumpism.
How many norms will still remain when Trump finally leaves office?