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Time to end the hysteria

When the TV came on early Thursday morning, breaking across all channels was The Washington Post headline: “Sessions met with Russian envoy twice last year, encounters he later did not disclose.”

MSNBC “Morning Joe” co-host Mika Brzezinski immediately filed it in the “career ending” category, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi held press conferences with the predictable “special prosecutor,” “resignation,” “lied under oath” choice of words, and by midday, Democratic operatives across the land were grinning ear to ear with the thought of taking out another Trumpster.

Ever aware of an opportunity for self-promotion, Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., tweeted: “I’ve been on the Armed Services Com for 10 years. No call or meeting w/Russian ambassador. Ever. Ambassadors call members of Foreign Rel Com.” When the internet revealed her 2013 and 2015 tweets proudly promoting her own meetings with the very same ambassador, her spokesman claimed it was different because they were group meetings and she called him. You’ve got to love the “a standard for thee but not more me” in that excuse.

But as the day unfolded, the truth began to claw itself back, and the Post headline suddenly wasn’t so ominous.

It turns out Sessions’ “lie” was a response to question from Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., on Jan. 10 regarding President Donald Trump’s campaign contacts with Russian operatives. Go listen to the full exchange, and Sessions answered openly to the question at hand as it related to him as asked. And by the time the attorney general wrapped up his mid-afternoon press conference on the issue, the entire premise of the Post story was returned to the supermarket check out aisle where it belonged.

In his own words: “I did not respond by referring to the two meetings, one very brief after a speech and one with two of my senior staffers, professional staffers with the Russian ambassador in Washington, where no such things were discussed. In my reply to the question — my reply to the question of Sen. Franken was honest and correct as I understood it at the time. I appreciate that some have taken the view that this was a false comment. That is not my intent. That is not correct.”

The attorney general set the record straight.

But the top hypocrite trophy goes to Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., for his CNN comment: “At some point, people have to ask the question: Where is the integrity, where is the rule of law, where is the obedience of law?”

What rock has he lived under these past eight years? Fast and Furious, IRS, “like your doctor keep your doctor,” executive orders eviscerating duly passed immigration laws, Benghazi, Iran deal, Loretta Lynch and Bill Clinton’s tarmac rendezvous a week before Hillary Clinton’s server problem magically disappeared?

Only now Cummings finds integrity and rule of law important? It’s beyond hypocritical; it’s outright disgusting.

With their dream of Obama’s “fundamental transformation” going down in flames and even The Washington Post admitting Tuesday that, “Since 2008, nearly every state moved right in both presidential and state politics,” the Democrats and their allies in the federal bureaucracy and national media are in full-blown panic mode.

Obama and his constitution wrecking crew led by Valerie Jarrett and Ben Rhodes is setting up shop in the former president’s Washington, D.C., mansion, millions of dollars are being raised for organized “resistance,” and Hollywood and the mainstream media are anxiously awaiting their orders.

Which is why, at this point in time, the Republicans and Trump need to end run all the nonsense.

Agree to a special prosecutor with clearly defined scope and let a full and open investigation do what common sense and logic can’t: end the narrative that Russia, not Hillary Clinton, is responsible for her election night disaster, and stop once and for all the drip, drip, drip of headline hysteria.

The rumors will at last be put to bed, and all those who thought it cute to leak classified information will be put in jail.

If this nation has any hope for restoring constitutional order and returning to our founding principles, the next four years must be time spent implementing policy instead of responding to headlines.

That, and that alone, is all that matters.

GEOFF CALDWELL lives in Joplin. He can be reached at gc@caldwells corner.com.

GEOFF CALDWELL

Columnist

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