The Mueller report has finally been delivered, and it seems the mainstream media is getting the Trump Russia story as wrong at the end as it did in the beginning. There was a surge of rejoicing from both overt Trump supporters, and journalists in the mainstream media who have always been keen to play down the consequences to Trump and his co-conspirators. A carefully-worded statement by the Office of the Special Counsel was, I believe, widely misinterpreted to mean that no more indictments would be coming on Russia and collusion.
We’ll know more in the next few days. But this short piece stands to correct a significant misstatement by Ken Dilanian, a national security reporter at MSNBC. Mr. Dilanian falsely reported that even though Adam Schiff, the Chairman of the House Select Committee on intelligence, had said there might be more indictments, he’d also admitted these “could not be on the the Russian collusion questions Mueller was hired to answer. It’s important to be straight about this.”
That was wrong. Rep. Schiff said exactly the opposite; more indictments were “likely” and they could be “central” to the “core issues of conspiracy”, or not; that was “yet to be determined”. (Eagle-eyed grammar aficionados will note Schiff used ‘yet to be determined’ over whether more indictments were ‘peripheral or central’ – not over whether they would happen; he called that “likely”.
Here’s the transcript of what Chairman Schiff said:
Rep. Schiff: “Well, what it means is that the Office of the Special Counsel, which is essentially a contract attorney to the Justice Department, that that Office won’t be bringing any further indictments. It doesn’t mean, of course, that main Justice, or the Southern District of New York US Attorney’s office, or the Eastern District or others may not bring indictments; in fact, given the lengthy redactions in many of the pleadings of the Special Counsel alluding to other investigations, I think it’s entirely possible, if not likely, that there will be other indictments. Now how central or peripheral they’ll be to the core issues of potential conspiracy is yet to be determined.”Narrator: Adam Schiff explicitly stated new indictments could cover “the Russia collusion questions Mueller was hired to answer”
Since Trump Russia, the story whereby a President of the United States was elected to office with the help of a hostile power, is the single most important story since World War Two, it is vital that correspondents on a trusted news channels tell the truth. “It’s important to be straight about this,” to coin a phrase.
Two other senior Democratic lawmakers also stated that they believed new indictments could be revealed. Rep. David Cicilline said “It certainly sounds like Mueller’s going to tell us who’s been indicted and who hasn’t,” using the future tense. An even more exuberant Senator Richard Blumenthal, of the Senate Judiciary committee, said that more indictments were very likely – featuring the President’s family, as I reported in a world exclusive two weeks ago.