BOSTON (CBS) – Being adept at math is a very useful skill, but not everyone has it. My own encounters with algebra and calculus were a fiasco I’d just as soon forget about.
But I can put two and two together, and that’s something you have to be able to do to understand why the Trump-Russia story is worth following, and is not, as the president puts it, a “hoax.”
Just consider a few items from the timeline of events.
In the months leading up to his nomination for president, the Trump campaign brings on an array of people with professional ties to the Putin regime – Paul Manafort, the campaign manager, a former paid consultant to Putin allies; Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, a paid guest at a Russian propaganda outlet in frequent contact with Russian officials; Carter Page, a foreign policy adviser whose travels to Moscow last July attract the attention of the FBI; and longtime Trump friend Roger Stone, Manafort’s business partner, who boasts publicly of his ties to WikiLeaks and his knowledge of forthcoming leaks damaging to the Clinton campaign.
Then, one month out from the November election, the disclosure of an Access Hollywood tape documenting crude Trump comments about women is followed within hours by a major WikiLeaks e-mail dump, which continues up to Election Day.
Since then, we continue to learn new information about Trump-world contacts with Russians, including the latest news about Donald Trump Junior’s involvement.
Is there any proof of collusion?
Not yet. That won’t be an easy thing to prove legally. But we do have a lot of circumstantial evidence adding up. You can do the math yourselves.