The White House team is feeling pretty damned full of itself since Attorney General William Barr took it upon himself to declare on behalf of Robert Mueller that the Trump campaign didn't collude with the Russians. It's feeling so confident that it’s arguing for more investigations, but this time into how President Barack Obama's administration reacted to the evidence that Russia was interfering in the 2016 election. Seriously.
"I think we ought to know what happened in that last administration. What we do know didn’t happen is that the Obama administration and the President himself knew that Russia was trying to interfere in our election and did nothing about it," troll extraordinaire Kellyanne Conway babbled Tuesday. "Why did they do nothing about it is because they were sure Hillary would win, or they didn't want to deal with it in the last months of their administration."
That's not a bad idea, as long as they get everyone involved to testify. Such as former Sen. Harry Reid, who, along with Mitch McConnell, was briefed by Obama's intelligence committee. In August 2016, he was writing to FBI Director James Comey that the threat of Russian interference "is more extensive than is widely known and may include the intent to falsify official election results" and that Putin's "goal is tampering with this election." Somebody else who needs to testify is CIA chief John Brennan, who told Reid (and presumably McConnell) in a private, classified briefing that "Russia's hackings appeared aimed at helping Mr. Trump win the November election," and that "unnamed advisers to Mr. Trump might be working with the Russians to interfere in the election."
Here's how McConnell reacted to that: He "resisted, questioning the underpinnings of the intelligence." He went further than that, according to reporter Greg Miller's intelligence sources. They told him that McConnell told Brennan, in essence, "You're telling us that Russia is trying to help elect Trump. If you try to come forward with this, I'm not going to sign onto any sort of public statement that would condemn Russian interference. But I will condemn you and the Obama administration for trying to mess up this election."
They could have former Obama White House chief of staff Denis McDonough testify. He's been quite public about McConnell's insistence that any warning from the administration be watered down to not even mention Russia. They could call former Vice President Joe Biden, who backs up those assertions. They could call President Obama.
Of course, it wouldn't make a damned bit of difference to Republicans that McConnell was so instrumental in handing the White House to Vladimir Putin on a silver platter. McConnell himself has the unmitigated shamelessness to stand on the Senate floor and say, "It's deeply disturbing that the Obama Administration was apparently insufficiently prepared to anticipate and counter Russian threats." None of it matters to them, with the White House in Republican hands and the courts being jam-packed with extremist ideologues who have no qualms about serving a president who serves the Kremlin.