The big losers of the Russian hacking scandal may yet be those who invested all their capital in a script that turned out to based on a fairy tale.
In Monday's Intelligence Committee hearings, James Comey did confirm that his FBI has found nothing to support President Trump's tweet that President Obama ordered him wiretapped. Not unexpected, but undeniably an embarrassment for the tweeter-in-chief.
Yet after eight months investigating the hacking and leaking of the emails of Clinton campaign chief John Podesta and the Democratic National Committee, there is apparently no evidence yet of Trump collusion with Russia.
Former Director of National Intelligence Gen. James Clapper has said that, as of his departure day, Jan. 20, he had seen no evidence of a Russia-Trump collusion.
Former acting CIA Director Michael Morell also made that clear this month: "On the question of the Trump campaign conspiring with the Russians here, there is smoke, but there is no fire, at all. ... There's no little campfire, there's no little candle, there's no spark. And there's a lot of people looking for it."
But while the FBI is still searching for a Trump connection, real crimes have been unearthed – committed by anti-Trump bureaucrats colluding with mainstream media – to damage Trump's presidency. There is hard evidence of collusion between the intel community and The New York Times and The Washington Post, both beneficiaries of illegal leaks – felonies punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
So where do we stand after Monday's hearing and eight-month FBI investigation? The Russians did hack Podesta's email account and the DNC, and while the FBI has found no evidence of Trump campaign collusion with the Russians, it is still looking.
However, the known unknowns seem more significant.
How could DNI Director Clapper and CIA Director Morell say no connection had been established between Trump's campaign and the Russians, without there having been an investigation? And how could such an investigation be conclusive in exonerating Trump's associates without some use of electronic surveillance?
Did the FBI fly to Moscow and question Putin's cyberwarfare team?
Is the FBI investigating the intelligence sources who committed felonies by illegally disclosing information about the Trump campaign? Comey would not commit to investigate these leaks, though this could involve criminal misconduct within his own FBI.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions has recused himself from any role in the Russian hacking scandal. But the Justice Department should demand that the FBI put the highest priority on investigating the deep state and its journalistic collaborators in the sabotage of the Trump presidency. If Comey refuses to do it, appoint a special counsel.
Vladimir Putin did not steal this election. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama lost it. Donald Trump won it fair and square. He is not an "illegitimate" president. There will be no impeachment. They were deceived and misled by their own leaders and media. They bought into a Big Lie.
Patrick J. Buchanan writes this column for the Creators syndicate.