Fox commentator: Even if Trump colluded with Russia it’s not a crime — just ‘highly inappropriate’
Appearing on Fox News Sunday, longtime contributor Brit Hume maintained that possible Russian collusion with Donald Trump campaign staffers during the 2016 election is much ado about nothing and doesn’t rise to the level of a crime.
Speaking with investigative reporter Bob Woodward of Watergate fame, Hume maintained he saw no crime but did admit working with the Russians to undermine the presidential election wold be “highly inappropriate.”
In video captured by Media Matters, Hume attacked investigators hired by Special Counsel Robert Mueller as “Democratic partisans.”
“[Mueller has] hired several lawyers who have made contributions to the Democratic Party, and would appear, at least on the surface, to be Democrats and perhaps Democratic partisans,” Hume began before adding, “It’s worth noting, I think, that this investigation has never been officially described as anything other than a counterintelligence investigation, which is to say that its purpose was to find out the extent of the Russians’ attempts to interfere in the election and influence the election.”
After a back and forth with Woodward, who pointed out that the Washington Post is reporting Mueller’s work as a “criminal investigation,” Hume said they were barking up the wrong tree.
“Can anybody identify the crime? Collusion, while it would be obviously alarming and highly inappropriate for the Trump campaign, of which there is no evidence by the way, of colluding with the Russians. It’s not a crime,” he huffed. “So are we talking about here the president’s firing of Comey being and obstruction of justice? And they got a grand jury on that? Is that was this is about?”
Hume is actually wrong, with Politifact noting that Nathaniel Persily of Stanford University Law School said it is a crime according to the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002.
“A foreign national spending money to influence a federal election can be a crime,” Persily explained. “And if a U.S. citizen coordinates, conspires or assists in that spending, then it could be a crime.”
Watch the video below via Media Matters: