Rudy Giuliani couldn’t have crystallized the stakes more clearly.
“There’s nothing wrong with taking information from Russians,” President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer said on CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday, discussing Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
A quick survey of the American political scene indicates that much of the nation agrees. Nearly three years after the first reports of Russian hacking into Democratic National Committee computers, there’s been little effort to take action that would contradict Giuliani’s judgment. Individuals may disagree, but Congress has made little effort to deter Americans from coordinating with foreign actors. Not only has there been no 9/11 Commission–style attempt to understand what happened in 2016; there’s been no serious federal initiative to harden vulnerable election infrastructure, even after Russia once again meddled in the 2018 elections. By deciding not to act, the American government has effectively decided that foreign interference is acceptable.