The FBI’s ongoing investigation of Russian meddling in our U.S. presidential election in 2016, which is being led by former ten-year Director of the FBI and now its special counsel, just made a huge announcement today. It indicted 13 Russian nationals in meddling in our 2016 presidential election by trying to help Republican nominee Donald Trump defeat Democratic nominee Hilary Clinton. Trump, of course, won the election, which was a big upset. The indictment says nothing about whether or not such Russian activities actually affected the election outcome. That is not the purpose of this Mueller investigation which is under the auspices of the Department of Justice, which the U.S. president actually controls to a certain extent.
President Donald Trump, throughout his now one-year presidency, has constantly denigrated Robert Mueller’s investigation without the president himself offering any substantial proof of such allegations. Numerous times, President Trump has publicly called Mueller’s investigation “a hoax” and “a witch hunt.” This behavior in itself, and many other things that he has done, have now become evidence that President Donald Trump has perhaps been obstructing justice regarding the Mueller investigation.Although this indictment says nothing about whether or not President Trump himself colluded with these Russian men in their interference in our election, the indictment does move the Mueller investigation closer to the White House. Eventually, President Trump may have to be questioned by the Mueller investigation staff.
Another development that gets closer to the White House is that Richard Gates, former business associate of Paul Manafort, reportedly is close to making a plea deal with the Mueller investigation. Manafort was the manager of Donald Trump’s political campaign for president during the entire summer of 2016. Mueller’s team indicted Manafort months ago.
None of the Russians indicted are U.S. citizens. They are Russian citizens who conducted various activities to subvert our election process. The indictment announcement consists of 37 pages. This document does not cite any American citizens as having knowledge of such behavior of these 13 Russian nationals. These 13 men did not only use the internet to try to accomplish their purposes. They also had fake passports to enter the U.S. to conduct activities such as organize political rallies and parades to elect Trump. More information about this indictment and the activities of these Russians while in our country likely will be forthcoming.