Last week we wrote about how the Obama administration and the Department of Homeland Security were playing a dangerous game with suggestions they could be forced to seize control of state election infrastructure in response to allegations of Russian hacking into Arizona and Illinois election databases (see "Why Is The DHS Preparing To Take Control Of The US Election?"). That said, we noted that DHS likely wouldn't just seize control of state election infrastructure on a whim as that kind of "blatant power grab" would require a "catalyst" and extreme fear of election rigging among the electorate. We therefore speculated that any sincere desire to nationalize state election infrastructure would have to be preceded by an intense "fear mongering tour" aimed at whipping the "electorate into a frenzy" over concerns that the sanctity our election process, the very basis of our democracy, was at risk.
Well, it seems that Hillary is now joining in on the "fear mongering tour" telling a rally in Illinois that there is "credible evidence" for U.S. intelligence officials "to pursue an investigation into Russia's efforts to interfere with our election." Per NBC News, when asked recently whether she thought Putin was interfering with U.S. elections in an effort to help Trump, Hillary responded with her favorite, folksy, Arkansas saying:
"If you find a turtle on a fence post, it didn't get there by accident. I think it's quite intriguing that this activity has happened around the time Trump became the nominee."
Isn't she just so down to earth and relatable? For some reason we're suddenly reminded of another saying that involves glass houses and stones.
Hillary continued with the usual rhetoric painting Trump as just another of Putin's "useful idiots."
The Democratic nominee told reporters on her plane that Trump has "urged the Russians to hack more, and, in particular, hack me, and he has generally parroted what is a Putin-Kremlin line."
The allegation against Russia by U.S. intelligence officials "raises further questions about Trump," Clinton added, "and I think those are questions the American people should be asking and answering."
The Republican nominee, she said, has "very early on allied himself with Putin's policies … And he furthermore has praised Putin, he seems to have this bizarre attraction to dictators, including Putin."
Ironically, Hillary's comments came just hours after the Washington Post joined in on the accusations on "Russian plan[s] to disrupt November elections." The report came despite a U.S. intelligence official cautioning the Post that there is no "definitive proof of such tampering, or any Russian plans to do so."
U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies are investigating what they see as a broad covert Russian operation in the United States to sow public distrust in the upcoming presidential election and in U.S. political institutions, intelligence and congressional officials said.
The aim is to understand the scope and intent of the Russian campaign, which incorporates cyber-tools to hack systems used in the political process, enhancing Russia’s ability to spread disinformation.
A Russian influence operation in the United States “is something we’re looking very closely at,” said one senior intelligence official who, like others interviewed, spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss a sensitive matter. Officials also are examining potential disruptions to the election process, and the FBI has alerted state and local officials to potential cyberthreats.
The official cautioned that the intelligence community is not saying it has “definitive proof” of such tampering, or any Russian plans to do so. “But even the hint of something impacting the security of our election system would be of significant concern,” the official said. “It’s the key to our democracy, that people have confidence in the election system.”
Seems that Hillary is more than willing to allege fire when it is politically expedient and despite no "definitive proof" while dismissing the many plumes of smoke surrounding her various personal scandals as mere "conspiracy theories" conjured up by "alt-right" nut jobs.
Certainly, any credible threat aimed at undermining the confidence of the American electorate in the election process is something that should be taken very seriously. However, propagating rumors and speculation of such a serious threat against our democracy without any "definitive proof" is wildly irresponsible.
That said, we suspect the "fear mongering tour" will continue with frequent stops in swing states all around the country over the coming weeks.