The year-long House Intelligence Committee probe into alleged Russian meddling — and collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia — was officially brought to an end Monday. In what should have been headline news, the committee announced that it while found that Russia attempted to cause chaos in the 2016 election, there was no evidence that Trump or anyone connected to him colluded with Russia or that Putin favored Trump over Clinton.
In their announcement, House Republicans said they will make their 150-page report available to Democrats who demanded a “more thorough” investigation and are already crying foul. The committee also released to the public a one-page summary of its findings.
Though the committee’s summary should have dominated the news cycle, two of the big three liberal television networks (ABC and CBS) gave it little more than cursory coverage (CBS Evening News devoted a whole 31 seconds to reporting it and ABC’s World News Tonight managed to squeeze it in with 27 seconds of coverage), and the third (NBC) ignored it altogether.
The lack of liberal media coverage is — while illustrative — unsurprising. Liberals in politics and media have been claiming for more than a year that Trump’s campaign was working with Russia to assure that Trump would win. The intelligence community even got in on the act with a series of unfounded assesments claiming the same thing. While there has been much accusation, insinuation, and innuendo, none of them has produced a shred of evidence to back up those claims. Instead, they demanded an investigation. Now that that investigation has been completed and issued findings unfavorable to their fantastic claims, the liberal establishment is largely ignoring it.
The summary lists among its “initial findings” that there was a “pattern of Russian attacks on America’s European allies” as well as “Russian cyberattacks on U.S. political institutions in 2015-2016” that included “use of social media to sow discord.” The summary also says that the committee agrees with “the Intelligence Community Assessment’s judgments” with one major caveat: “except with respect to Putin’s supposed preference for candidate Trump.” Also, while stating that the committee “found no evidence of collusion, coordination, or conspiracy between the Trump campaign and the Russians,” the summary goes on to address how “anti-Trump research made its way from Russian sources to the Clinton campaign” and “problematic contacts between senior Intelligence Community officials and the media.”
In other words, the two big claims of the liberal establishment — that Trump was Putin’s choice (or, as Hillary Clinton said, his “puppet”) and that Trump colluded with Russia — come up empty. But on the other hand, the anti-Trump (read: Team Clinton) crowd worked to push a fake “dossier” into the investigation while the intelligence community officials among them worked closely with the liberal media.
That may go a long way toward the liberal media ignoring this news.