Robert Mueller’s ongoing special counsel investigation into Donald Trump’s ties to Russia reached a new level on Thursday, with CNN reporting that Mueller’s team met with the Christopher Steele, the author of the damning Russia dossier.
As Rachel Maddow highlighted on Thursday night, a portion of the CNN report noted: “The intelligence agencies, particularly the CIA, and the FBI took Steele’s research seriously enough that they kept it out of a publicly-released January report on Russian meddling in the election in order to not divulge which parts of the dossier they had corroborated and how.”
More from Maddow:
— Sean Colarossi (@SeanColarossi) October 6, 2017
The FBI and CIA took care – after internal debate, they took care – to not explicitly discuss the dossier, to not explicitly include mention of the dossier when they reported on Russian meddling in the election last year. And the reason they didn’t include the dossier in those reports is specifically because they had corroborated some of the claims in the dossier and if they were going to put those claims, and if they were going to mention the dossier in their reporting, they would ultimately have to explain how they corroborated it, how they figured out that what Christopher Steele said in that dossier was correct. However they did that – however they corroborated what they corroborated – was too sensitive to tell, say, Donald Trump, so they didn’t write it down.
In other words, the intelligence community was so concerned about the sensitive information getting into Trump’s hands, that they just avoided including it in their reporting at all.
As Maddow added: “When it came time to produce their report about the Russians meddling in the election, they didn’t include the dossier in that because any classified version of that report would have to include how they knew the dossier was true.”
Investigators didn’t want that, so they kept it quiet.
As Donald Trump and his team continue to insist that the Russia scandal is “fake news,” reporting produced each day shows otherwise. Not only isn’t it fake news, but some of the investigation’s findings have become so damning and so sensitive that the intelligence community is worried it will fall into the president’s hands.
That says all we need to know about where this investigation is headed.