Hillary Clinton maintained her assertion of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s interference in American elections, and warned he’ll interfere in the 2024 presidential race “if he has a chance.”
“I don't think, despite all of the deniers, there's any doubt that he interfered in our election or that he has interfered in many ways in the internal affairs of other countries—funding political parties, funding, you know, political candidates, buying off, you know, government officials in different places,” Ms. Clinton said in a Sept. 25 interview with MSNBC.
She said Mr. Putin "hates democracy" and hates the West and the United States.
“I fear that the Russians have proved themselves to be quite adept at interfering. And if he has a chance, he'll do it again,” she said.
Ms. Clinton said that Mr. Putin has determined “he can do two things simultaneously.” First is that Russia can “continue to damage and divide us internally. And he's quite good at it.”
The 2016 Democrat presidential candidate said that the Russian president has “a lot of apologists and enablers in our own country.” Ms. Clinton believes part of the reason Mr. Putin “worked so hard against me is because he didn't think that he wanted me in the White House.”
Ms. Clinton insisted that the United States is heading toward fascism.
“We have to reject authoritarianism, we have to reject a kind of creeping fascism, almost, of people who are really ready to turn over their thinking, their votes, to wannabe dictators. And we can't allow that to proceed.”
Russian Collusion Accusation
During the 2016 presidential race, Ms. Clinton accused former President Donald Trump’s campaign of colluding with Russia.
In September 2016, Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann submitted data to the FBI which he believed would result in the agency investigating President Trump and his campaign.
Ms. Clinton repeatedly referred to the FBI investigation of President Trump in her campaign. However, her attempts failed and he went on to win the election.
Ms. Clinton’s use of propaganda to link President Trump with Russia was known to then President Barack Obama, according to special counsel John Durham’s May 2023 report (pdf) on the FBI’s investigation of the Trump campaign in 2016.
In 2016, John Brennan, then director of the CIA, briefed President Obama and other senior national security officials about the “alleged approval by Hillary Clinton on July 26, 2016, of a proposal from one of her foreign policy advisors to vilify Donald Trump by stirring up a scandal claiming interference by Russian security services," according to Mr. Brennan's notes, as recorded in Mr. Durham's report.
The report stated that “private actors affiliated with the Clinton campaign were seeking in 2016 to promote a false or exaggerated narrative to the public and to U.S. government agencies about Trump's possible ties to Russia.”
Special counsel Robert Mueller investigated the claims and found no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.
Attacking Trump, Distrust in Media
President Trump recently highlighted the Russian collusion scandal in a late July op-ed published in Newsweek, where he called the incident “the most atrocious weaponization of our government in American history.”
Supreme Court Justice John Roberts (2L) administers the oath of office to U.S. President Donald Trump as his wife, Melania Trump, holds the Bible and son Barron Trump looks on, at the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Jan. 20, 2017. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
President Trump insisted that his policies aimed at stopping illegal immigration, terminating globalist trade deals, and ending the “sellout” of the United States to Communist China made him a threat to the “Washington establishment.”
“In response, an unelected cabal in the senior ranks of our government, in concert with their chosen candidate, Hillary Clinton, and their allies in the media, launched the de-facto coup attempt known as the Russia Hoax,” he wrote.
“Their goal was to prevent my election, and failing that, to throw me out of office or sabotage my presidency, undercut my agenda in Congress, block my domestic reforms, and interfere with my foreign policy.”
“For nearly three years, they carried out a massive disinformation campaign and lawless persecution based on the monstrous lie that I was a traitor to my country.”
President Trump alleged that the “corrupted” federal agencies have interfered in every election since 2016 and are interfering in the 2024 election as well.
The Russian collusion scandal and subsequent revelations of how President Trump was falsely targeted had a massive impact on how Americans perceive media.
In a January report for the Columbia Journalism Review, journalist Jeff Gerth notes that prior to the 2016 election, more Americans trusted traditional media. But after the Russian collusion narrative fell apart, trust in traditional media began to crater.
According to surveys by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, 33 percent of Americans trusted news media in 2016, which then rose slightly to 38 percent in 2017 but has been falling ever since.
As of 2022, only 26 percent of Americans trust the news media.