The transcripts revealed the reasons that Republicans have been so determined to dismiss the “Steele dossier” and the other information put together by Fusion GPS. They did so because the information collected by Fusion confirmed what investigations at the Financial Times made public months ago—Donald Trump was deeply involved with Russian mobsters, who were largely responsible for his finances. In fact, much of Trump’s claimed wealth was simply inexplicable, apparently unmoored from any legitimate source. Donald Trump, successful real estate tycoon, was a fiction.
Steele’s network of contacts and years of relationship-building, along with his entry into Russia at a point where the connection between Trump and this international criminal underground had not yet become a topic of general discussion, allowed him to gather a great deal of information quickly. That information made it clear that the Russian government was determined to assist Trump, if for no other reason than to harm Hillary Clinton. It also became clear from the outset that Trump’s activities in Russia had opened him to potential blackmail, putting an American presidential candidate under the thumb of Russian operatives both fiscally and personally.
Christopher Steele and the partners at Fusion GPS weren’t cackling together over vague, salacious rumors and spinning out tales of Trump’s wild nights in Moscow. They were confronted by a mountain of evidence that showed Trump was both financially dependent on, and personally compromised by, Russian oligarchs with connections both to criminal families—and to the corrupt Russian government.
What we learned from the release of the transcripts only confirmed what we’ve seen in public hearings: Republicans are doing everything they can to protect Trump, even if that means attacking people who only did their best to uncover the truth. Republicans are even willing to press criminal charges against a man who put himself at personal risk and brought what he had learned to the attention of the FBI because what he found was such a threat to America, and possibly to the world.
What the transcripts reveal is that, in investigating connections between Donald Trump and corrupt governments overseas, Fusion GPS demonstrated that the government right here in the United States is equally corrupt. Equally willing to trade truth for power. Equally ready to condemn those whose only crime is uncovering information which those in charge want thoroughly buried.
The information collected by Fusion GPS is an indictment of Donald Trump as a front man for mobsters and corrupt governments whose crooked dealing and personal excesses left him open to easy manipulation.
But the Fusion GPS transcripts are an indictment of the Republican Party, as an entity that has lost any concern for the nation, fairness, or the facts—an entity addicted to power by any means, and willing to use that power to close the mouths of those they view as threats.
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