Why the New York Times didn’t just spike this story is as curious as the fact that they still don’t seem to get this—Democrats actively sought Russian involvement in the 2016 U.S. elections. It was also Democrats who secretly employed Russian tactics in 2017’s special election to fill the Senate seat left open when Jeff Sessions resigned to take the U.S. Attorney General post.
As Russia’s online election machinations came to light last year, a group of Democratic tech experts decided to try out similarly deceptive tactics in the fiercely contested Alabama Senate race, according to people familiar with the effort and a report on its results.
The secret project, carried out on Facebook and Twitter, was likely too small to have a significant effect on the race, in which the Democratic candidate it was designed to help, Doug Jones, edged out the Republican, Roy S. Moore. But it was a sign that American political operatives of both parties have paid close attention to the Russian methods, which some fear may come to taint elections in the United States.
The Times says that the effort was too small to have an effect on the race. It also says that “there is no evidence that Mr. Jones sanctioned or was even aware of the social media project.”
The first statement is conjecture and the second is TimesSpeak for “we didn’t bother to ask if the Jones campaign knew about the project, sanctioned it it or actively encouraged it.” Since the Times can suppose that it had no effect then we can suppose that Jones not only knew about this secret project—he embraced it with both stubby little arms.
Given that he’s behaved just like the typical Democrat party hack he has denied ever being, it’s no small stretch to conclude that he’d stoop to the “by any means necessary” tactics Democrats have employed since Newt Gingrich tipped over their punch bowl in 1994’s Glorious Revolution.
A little true history here—the infamous Steele Dossier did begin with the conservative Washington Free Beacon. But the right ceased oppo research on Trump as soon as he became the GOP nominee. It was the Democrats and the Clinton Campaign who picked up the ball and had Christopher Steele keep making stuff up. So much stuff that the Justice Department under Barack Obama then used it to get secret, sealed warrants and begin spying on the Trump campaign. Oh, but the Clinton Campaign had nothing to do with that. This topic never came up in that Bill Clinton – Loretta Lynch meeting.
Politics is a very dirty business. Neither side plays by the rules unless they have to. But one side has repeatedly demonstrated a willingness to go to absolutely any length to win any battle.
This is why it’s so unusual for the Jones-Russia project to surface in the Times this week. Maybe it’s because one of the journalists involved in the whole Russian collusion circus just admitted publicly that if there is a there in there, it’s not showing up. Maybe the Times hopes its dwindling reader base will just conclude that it’s ok if everybody does it.