The Moscow Project tracked:

A total of 272 contacts between Trump’s team and Russia-linked operatives have been identified, including at least 38 meetings. And we know that at least 33 high-ranking campaign officials and Trump advisers were aware of contacts with Russia-linked operatives during the campaign and transition, including Trump himself. None of these contacts were ever reported to the proper authorities. Instead, the Trump team tried to cover up every single one of them.

Since last year, Trump’s henchman Rudy Giuliani and his Ukrainian pals Lev and Igor were digging up dirt from pro-Russian Ukrainians on Joe Biden, and got arrested for it. Attorney General William “Coverup” Barr recently fired the U.S. Attorney for SDNY to make the investigation into Giuliani “go away.” Barr had his own interactions with Giuliani. How Giuliani and Barr set out to defend Trump; and Newly Unearthed Documents Show Multiple Meetings Beteen Giuliani And Barr — And Trey Gowdy — In 2019.

Rep. Devin Midnight Run Nunes, former chair of the House Intelligence Committee, did everything in his power to undermine Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation and the congressional investigations. And now he is actively soliciting dirt from pro-Russian Ukrainians on Joe Biden (below).

Just a reminder: soliciting or receiving anything of value from a foreign source in a U.S. election is a crime. If you are doing a foreign government’s bidding, you are a traitor. This apparently now describes a large number of Republicans.

As Mark Sumner at Daily Kos reports, Republicans are planning a mass attack against Biden using information from pro-Russian agents:

Devin Nunes made it clear that his loyalty to Trump exceeded any other responsibility. And when it came to questions about when Nunes would be truthful with his House colleagues, he could not have been more clear: “Never.”

So it should come as no surprise that as the 2020 election approaches, Devin Nunes has been working directly with a pro-Russian Ukrainian lawmaker who previously passed along information through Rudy Giuliani. That lawmaker has been feeding information to Republicans in both the House and Senate. It comes in the form of a “packet” of supposed evidence that backs up Trump and Giuliani’s long-debunked claims about Joe Biden’s relationship to the Ukrainian government.

As CNN reports, Democrats have been aware that Republicans in the House and Senate—including Nunes—were sent a packet of information from pro-Russian Ukrainian lawmaker Andrii Derkach in January, in the midst of Donald Trump’s impeachment. But Republicans have refused to discuss what’s in the packet, or even admit that they have it. In closed-door Intelligence Committee hearings, Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney of New York made multiple attempts to get Nunes to answer a simple question. “Is the ranking member prepared to even respond to the question?,” asked Maloney. ”How about it, Mr. Nunes? Did you receive a package from Andrii Derkach or not? And would you share with the committee or not?” Nunes did not respond. “Well,” said Maloney. “I guess this is a case where silence speaks volumes.”

As Politico reported, that silence extends to the FBI. After Democratic staff members became aware of the existence of the document packet, they requested information on the contents from the FBI. Not only has there been no information provided, there hasn’t even been a response.

During his Tuesday hearing with the House Judiciary Committee, Attorney General William Barr was just as silent in refusing to share any information collected in the investigation he’s conducted with the assistance of U. S. Attorney John “Bull” Durham. That investigation also includes sharing Ukraine with Guiliani, as well as attempts to arm-twist officials in London, Rome, and Australia into giving Barr additional leverage that can be used to support Trump.

Note: William “Coverup” Barr “has all but promised to provide America with a QAnon-sanctioned October surprise.” For all his criticisms of former FBI Director James Comey violating long-standing DOJ policy against election interference by discussing ongoing criminal investigations, Barr has gone well beyond Comey by frequently discussing his intentions to bring criminal indictments against some of the FBI and DOJ investigators into the Trump campaign’s numerous contacts with the Russians in 2016.

Barr has all but declared he is starting from the premise of a predetermined outcome of guilt, and is cherry-picking bits and pieces of “evidence” he has been allowed to declassify by President Trump to work backwards to build a case against these public servants. If he is using Russian propaganda passed along by pro-Russian Ukrainians through Rudy Giuliani, Devin Nunes, or his own corrupt sources, this is even worse.

These Republican cronies are continuing the Russian collusion conspiracy that never ended after the 2016 campaign. It’s all part of the same conspiracy.

On Friday, The Hill reported that Rep. Eliot Engel has issued a subpoena to another Republican known to have been stacking up information provided by Giuliani and his associates: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. “Secretary Pompeo has turned the State Department into an arm of the Trump campaign and he’s not even trying to disguise it,” said Engel. Pompeo has shared information connected to Joe Biden with Senate Republicans, while hiding it from Democrats. However, it’s hard to call the information Pompeo has shared exclusively with Republicans a “packet” … because it’s over 16,000 pages long.

In the next 97 days, the attack on Joe Biden is going to come from William Barr, from Mike Pompeo, from Senate Republicans, and from Republican representatives like Nunes, all of them using information that has not been vetted, or even seen, by anyone outside the GOP. They’re not planning an October surprise: They’re planning a bullshit assault from every direction.

Barr, Nunes, and Pompeo are not just sitting on this information: they’re deliberately hiding it, looking for the moment to strike when no one has a chance to see what a baseless conspiracy they’re really pushing.

And of course, let’s not forget Senators Ron Johnson (R-WI), chair of the Homeland Security committee, Johnson Gases Up Biden Investigation Before Election, and Lindsey “Stonewall” Graham (R-SC), chair of the Judiciary Committee who has already held the first of his Stalinist show trials, and is “looking forward to grilling” Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Lindsey Graham previews Mueller interrogation.

Despite having failed to address the expiration of the CARES Act as the nation slips into an economic depression, the Senate is still scheduled to go on its traditional August recess from August10 to September 7. Republicans instead are focused on pursuing these QAnon “deep state” conspiracy theories, because “Dear Leader” insists on it.

So “Stonewall” Graham’s Stalinist show trials will have to occur September 8-27, or September 30-October 11, according to the Senate calendar. Of course, William “Coverup” Barr is not bound by the Senate calendar. The most corrupt attorney general in the history of the United States can drop the Durham-Barr report (alternative history of the Russia investigation), at a time and place of his choosing to maximize the effect in the media and on the election.

Media Complicity

“And, just like in 2016, they’re expected to get every single column of The New York Times and every single moment of network news airtime to repeat their claims, unchallenged, in the days right before the election.”

The news media knows that this is the state of play. We all know that this is the state of play. The news media has an obligation not to be complicit dupes of the Trump campaign/Russian propaganda as they so readily did with the “but her emails” slander of Hillary Clinton in 2016.

This election is a binary choice between preserving American democracy and Trumpism, the new American fascism. The news media had better decide to be on the right side of history this time.