For left-wing defenders like Max Blumenthal and Glenn Greenwald, by contrast, ideology is king. Blumenthal and Greenwald loathe Trump. But they loathe hawkish foreign policy more. So they minimize Russia’s election meddling to oppose what they see as a new Cold War.

It’s a genuinely principled position. The problem is that principles are blinding them to facts.

On Tuesday on the Tucker Carlson show, Blumenthal laid out the progressive case against “Russia hysteria.” His first point was that, by obsessing about the Russia scandal, Democrats are forfeiting the chance to outline a genuinely progressive alternative to Trump. For the “corporate sellout establishment that can’t agree on a big economic message, that doesn’t favor single payer [health care],” Blumenthal argued, “this is just convenient because this gives them a way of opposing Trump without having to do anything remotely progressive.”