Andrew McCarthy: Trump and Russia -- What the Roger Stone indictment really tells us

Roger Stone is the shiny object. The obstruction charges in his long-anticipated indictment, made public on Friday, are not the matter of consequence for the United States.

Nor is the critical thing the indictment’s implicit confirmation that there was no criminal “collusion” conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia.

What matters is this: The indictment is just the latest blatant demonstration that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office, the Department of Justice, and the FBI have known for many months that there was no such conspiracy. And yet, fully aware that the Obama administration, the Justice Department, and the FBI had assiduously crafted a public narrative that Trump may have been in cahoots with the Russian regime, they have allowed that cloud of suspicion to hover over the presidency — over the Trump administration’s efforts to govern — heedless of the damage to the country.

DEFIANT ROGER STONE POSTS PICTURE OF MUELLER’S 'NOTHINGBURGER' AS TRUMP COMES TO HIS DEFENSE

The rationale for the Trump-Russia investigation — namely, the notion that the Trump campaign had “coordinated” in the Kremlin’s cyber-espionage operation to meddle in the 2016 campaign — has been nothing more than a suspicion harbored by political, law-enforcement, and intelligence officials who loathed Donald Trump. That there may be a thousand good reasons to dislike Donald Trump is irrelevant, for we are talking about investigations, not politics. Investigative suspicions must be rooted in fact, not contempt.

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Not only was the suggestion of a Trump-Russia conspiracy not founded on fact. The officials calling the shots had reason to know that the premise was factually false. In truth, there was no evidence of Trump-campaign complicity in Russian espionage — nothing but the Clinton-campaign generated, unverified Steele dossier. The months-in-the-making Stone indictment is just the latest proof of that.

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