Yesterday I talked about how Robert Mueller's testimony on Wednesday included the fact the Russians are currently attacking our voting systems and have been since 2016, and that Republicans refuse to lift a finger to stop them, blocking measures to help beef up voting system security yesterday. Now we find out the Russian attack on our voting system in 2016 was so massive that they hit all 50 states over three years and absolutely interfered in the presidential race.
The Senate Intelligence Committee concluded Thursday that election systems in all 50 states were targeted by Russia in 2016, largely undetected by the states and federal officials at the time, but at the demand of American intelligence agencies the committee was forced to redact its findings so heavily that key lessons for the 2020 election are blacked out.
The report — the first volume of several to be released from the committee’s investigation into Russia’s 2016 election interference — came just 24 hours after the former special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, warned that Russia was moving again to interfere “as we sit here.”
It also landed hours after Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority leader, personally stepped forward to block consideration of a package of election security bills.
While details of many of the hackings directed by Russian intelligence, particularly in Illinois and Arizona, are well known, the committee’s report describes a Russian intelligence effort more far-reaching than the federal government has previously acknowledged.
It concluded that while there is no evidence that any votes were changed in actual voting machines, “Russian cyberactors were in a position to delete or change voter data” in the Illinois voter database. The committee found no evidence that they did so.
While the report is not directly critical of either American intelligence agencies or the states, it described what amounted to a cascading intelligence failure, in which the scope of the Russian effort was underestimated, warnings to the states were too muted, and state officials either underreacted or, in some cases, resisted federal efforts to offer help.
Once again, the Russians were deep into our voting registration and tally systems in all 50 states and could have done anything they wanted in 2016.
Once again, Mitch McConnell was aware of all of this from the beginning.
Once again, McConnell and the GOP have done everything they can to block efforts to increase security in voting registration and tally systems.
And if you don't believe the Russians changed any votes while being in a position to do so in all 50 states, well, I don't know what to say. The Senate Intelligence Committee may have found "no evidence" but that's like saying police knew of a group of bank robbers had access to a bank vault but there was "no evidence" of anything taken...admitting to the crime would have of course destroyed the bank, and that's what's happening here.
Of course, as several of you have suggested in the comments over the last few months is that the Russians broke into the bank vault only to discover another robbery in progress.
Only in this case, it's our election systems. But it's fine, right? The good guys will prevail?