There are very few things we can say about Donald Trump with certainty. He contradicts himself frequently, sometimes within days, sometimes within the same sentence. But we know he needs to be seen as a “winner” above all else. It’s why he still takes shots at Hillary Clinton eight months after the election, and why he continues to push allegations of voter fraud despite little evidence to support the highly-charged claim.
Saying ANYTHING about the Russian hacks—for good or for ill—delegitimizes his November win. This would be true even if there was no Russia story dominating the news cycle, even if there wasn’t an FBI investigation ongoing, even if Trump didn’t have a well-documented penchant for strongmen, even if former advisors like Paul Manafort and Carter Page didn’t have troubling ties to Moscow. That’s all true but even if it wasn’t, Trump still wouldn’t bring up the hacking issue. That’s not who he is.