Most of the discussion surrounding the highly anticipated testimony of former FBI director, James Comey, seems to be centered around who’s lying, obstruction of justice, collusion, or the legality of leaks, while the most vital issue is being largely ignored.
This issue, which has grave national security implications, which affects each one of us and threatens our very democracy, is the one matter that has been unequivocally proven: Russia did indeed interfere with our elections. We may not yet know to what extent or the full impact, however, there is no doubt that it happened.
Senator Martin Heinrich (D-NM) asked James Comey about the seriousness of what Russia did and “why there was an investigation in the first place?” Comey’s response was compelling…
“The — there should be no fuzz on this whatsoever. The Russians interfered in our election during the 2016 cycle. They did it with purpose. They did it with sophistication. They did it with overwhelming technical efforts. And it was an active measures campaign driven from the top of that government. There is no fuzz on that. It is a high-confidence judgment of the entire intelligence community, and — and the members of this committee have — have seen the intelligence. It’s not a close call. That happened. That’s about as un-fake as you can possibly get, and is very, very serious, which is why it’s so refreshing to see a bipartisan focus on that because this is about America, not about any particular party.”
A foreign government used technology, people, and numerous other methods to intrude upon our election process to sway our thoughts, emotions, actions, and inevitably our vote.
The Russians committing a hostile act against our government should be of the utmost concern regardless of one’s political affiliation. While both sides are playing party politics with Democrats prematurely calling for “impeachment” and Republicans falsely claiming “100% validation”, our country remains a vulnerable target. Both parties are claiming victory when it’s only just begun. Comey is just one witness in a widespread investigation.
Instead of focusing on the gravity of what the Russians did and continue to do, the investigation is being overshadowed by partisan talking points and distractions.
As President of the United States, Donald Trump is supposed to protect us against attacks from foreign entities. In contrast, he has consistently called it a “hoax” or “fake news” which in turn undermines the severity of Russia’s aggression toward us and for some has completely invalidated it.
Even more shocking is the seeming lack of concern the President has for such an existential threat. Even with the intelligence he’s received about this unprecedented attack by Russia, he appears uninterested as is evident during this exchange between Comey and Senator Martin Heinrich (D-NM):
HEINRICH: Did the president, in any of those interactions that you’ve shared with us today, ask you what you should be doing, or what our government should be doing, or the intelligence community, to protect America against Russian interference in our election system?
COMEY: I don’t recall a conversation like that.
HEINRICH: Do you — do you find it odd…
COMEY: Not with — not with — not with President Trump.
Just as disturbing is the GOP’s failure to be outraged about Russia hacking our elections. The party that claims to be the most patriotic and Constitutional is willing to dismiss a direct assault on our country. What they fail to understand is how Russia operates. This time around they may have wound up helping the GOP while the next time around their goal may be to destroy the Republican candidate/party.
Just as Comey described, “They’re going to come for whatever party they choose to try to work on behalf of and they’re not devoted to either in my experience. They’re just about their own advantage,”.
“I don’t think Putin is a Republican or a Democrat. He’s an opportunist.” Senator Angus King (I-ME)
Comey went on to explain.
“It’s not about Republicans or Democrats. They’re coming after America, which I hope we all love equally. They want to undermine our credibility in the face of the world. They think that this great experiment of ours is a threat to them, and so they’re going to try to run it down and dirty it up as much as possible.
That’s what this is about. And they will be back because we remain — as difficult as we can be with each other, we remain that shining city on the hill, and they don’t like it.”
This wasn’t a one-time indiscretion by our adversary. It is a long-term practice which grows stronger with time and has become more aggressive with each successful maneuver. Russia’s efforts ramped up significantly in 2016, and when the President fails to see the gravity of what it is doing it will only embolden the Bear.
The inactions of both the President and the GOP are putting us at risk for ongoing and increasingly ruthless aggressions by Russia as well as other foreign nations who are undoubtedly paying attention to how we’re responding now.
The continuation of the FBI investigation into Russia’s interference in our election process is vital to protect our elections and essentially to our sovereignty.