It’s time to revise Andy Warhol’s famous quote and say that in the future, everyone will be investigated for colluding with Russia for fifteen minutes.

The Senate Intelligence Committee will now examine the campaign of Green Party candidate Jill Stein because someone must have colluded with Russia, right?

Karoun Demirjian reports at the Washington Post:

Senate intel committee investigating Jill Stein campaign for possible collusion with the Russians

The Senate Intelligence Committee is looking at the presidential campaign of the Green Party’s Jill Stein for potential “collusion with the Russians,” a sign that the panel’s probe is far from over, even as allegations swirl that the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation is racing to a close.

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) told reporters Monday that the Senate Intelligence Committee has “two other campaigns that we’re just starting on,” in addition to the panel’s ongoing probe of alleged ties between the Trump administration and Kremlin officials. One of those he identified as Stein’s; Burr has indicated previously that the committee is also looking into reports that the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign paid for research that went into a dossier detailing allegations of Donald Trump’s 2013 exploits in Moscow.

Stein was present at a 2015 dinner in Moscow that was also attended by Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, whose contacts with Russian officials have been a chief focus of congressional investigators and special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s probe. Flynn and Stein were photographed at the same table as Russian President Vladi­mir Putin, who sat next to Flynn and across the table from Stein.

Emma Loop of BuzzFeed has more details on how this took shape:

The Senate’s Russia Investigation Is Now Looking Into Jill Stein

The top congressional committee investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election has set its sights on the Green Party and its nominee, Jill Stein.

Dennis Trainor Jr., who worked for the Stein campaign from January to August of 2015, says Stein contacted him on Friday saying the Senate Intelligence Committee had requested that the campaign comply with a document search.

Trainor, who served as the campaign’s communications director and acting manager during that time, told BuzzFeed News that he was informed of the committee’s request because during his time on the campaign, his personal cell phone was “a primary point of contact” for those looking to reach Stein or the campaign. That included producers from RT News, the Russian state-funded media company, who booked Stein for several appearances, Trainor said.

“Then I was told by Jill just to wait for further instructions,” Trainor said, adding that he was told the campaign would contact him in the next week with instructions, presumably from the Senate Intelligence Committee, for executing the document search, including precise search terms. That has not happened yet, Trainor said.

This may sound like it appeared out of thin air but apparently it has been on other people’s radar for months. In June of this year, Dave Gilson wrote at Mother Jones:

Jill Stein Says Nothing Happened at Her Dinner With Putin

One of the more intriguing images related to the Trump-Russia scandal is a photograph from December 2015 of future (now former) National Security Advisor Michael Flynn sitting with Russian President Vladimir Putin at a Moscow gala for the Kremlim-backed news outlet RT. On the other side of the table that night was Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein. Until now, Stein hasn’t offered many details about how she came to be there or what happened beyond saying it was “a great opportunity to lay out some of my foreign policy proposals and get Russian reactions to them.”

In an interview with The Intercept’s Jeremy Scahill posted on Wednesday, Stein fills in her story about the evening, starting with “the mythology that this was an intimate dinner.” Stein tells Scahill that she did not know she would be seated with Putin or Flynn, and that her interaction with both men was minimal. Putin and his companions, she says, “stormed in” and “really weren’t at the table for very long.” She thought the other members of Putin’s party were his bodyguards—in fact, they were Putin’s spokesman, chief of staff, and deputy chief of staff. Beyond a perfunctory handshake with the Russian leader, she says, “Nobody met anybody. I didn’t hear any words exchanged between English speakers and Russians.”

There are people on the left who apparently believe Stein was part of the ‘Russian conspiracy’ to elect Trump. A quick scan of Twitter produced these gems:

The 2016 election truly caused some people to lose their minds.


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