March 25, 2019
Wait for the evidence, the Left said. It's coming. Now, two years into this $50 million dollar campaign to derail the president and the conservative agenda of the voters who elected him, the big moment is here. Twenty-eight hundred subpoenas, 500 search warrants, 50 phone taps, 19 liberal attorneys, and 40 FBI agents into this expensive hoax, Special Counsel Robert Mueller agrees: there's absolutely no proof of collusion. At least on Donald Trump's part. The Democrats' conspiracy to destroy America, on the other hand, seems ongoing.
Americans won't get a do-over on the millions of resources the president's enemies have wasted -- or the dozens of priorities that could have taken this investigation's place. But the Russia probe has given the country one thing: a glimpse into just how far the other side will go to delegitimize the president. Even now, with their "gotcha moment" spoiled, Democrats don't seem the least bit interested in letting go. "We will accept the conclusions of the Mueller report," liberals had vowed. Now that there's no evidence? "It's a cover up."
The Federalist's Willis Krumholz could only shake his head. "The media and Democrat Party have dug themselves so deeply in a hole, they must keep on digging." While the American people beg the Left to move on, House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler seems intent on beating the dead collusion horse. "Maybe it's not indictable," he argued, "but we know there was collusion. The question is the degree," he insisted on Fox News Sunday. Surely they're kidding, former Congressman Jason Chaffetz fired back. "The team that Mueller put together -- these weren't friends of the president... [Y]ou had people from the Clinton camp on the team. If they were going to get him, they would have."
Yet already, Democrats are gearing up for another round of fatal and divisive investigations, wasting more taxpayer time and more taxpayer dollars. "The job of Congress," Nadler tried to justify, "is much broader than the job of the special counsel. The special counsel is looking and can only look for crimes. We have to protect the rule of law, we have to look for abuses of power, we have to look for obstructions of justice, we have to look for corruption in the exercise of power which may not be crimes."
For some reason, the Left seems to think that continuing this hoax makes them more electable. A full 64 percent of Americans would disagree, telling Rasmussen that if the Mueller report cleared the president of wrongdoing, then it's time to put the issue to bed. But, as Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.) pointed out, that's tough to do when sabotaging the president is your only agenda. "For two years, Special Counsel Mueller conducted his investigation with every available Justice Department resource at his disposal, and today's principal conclusions assure every American there was no collusion between Russia and Donald Trump or his campaign." Now, he says, Democrats think they can "go into the Judiciary Committee or any other committee and have a limited budget, limited subpoena power, limited staff and go up against an investigation that lasted 22 months, had unlimited power, unlimited subpoena power, had plenty of investigators -- and they think they can find something more than what they did."
Good luck, pundits warn. Not only will Democrats alienate more Americans, they'll also be undermining any hopes they had for 2020. At the very least, this fiasco has exposed the liberal media for what it is: a coordinated Democratic smear operation. "Never has so little come of so many screaming chyrons," Rich Lowry declares. "Every mini-scooplet was played up like major news, and if you went on air and said that collusion was unlikely and we should wait for the evidence, you were often treated like you were in the tank for Trump. The last two years have been a disgrace, and no one should forget it." For the entire year of 2017, Krumholz agreed, "Anything that could damage Trump, no matter how outlandish, was published. Journalistic standards collapsed." And yet, Mollie Hemingway reminds everyone, the Washington Post and New York times won Pulitzers for their coverage of Trump's supposedly treasonous activity.
There will be no undoing the damage -- to America, to our elections system, to the media's credibility, and to the Left's façade of noble intentions. As the president himself said earlier today, a lot of people have been "badly hurt" by this witch hunt. "A lot of very [terrible] things happened for our country." But, in the end, "this was an illegal takedown that failed." Let's hope, as Rep. Collins does, that Chairman Nadler rethinks his "sprawling investigation" and gets back to doing the business of the American people.
Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.