Ex-Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson’s testimony Wednesday should mark the definitive end of “Russia hacked the election” hysteria. Too bad it took so long to get to this point.
Johnson told the House Intelligence Committeeoutright that the Russians failed to alter “ballots, ballot counts or reporting of election results.”
Yes, it’s clear Russia (with Vladimir Putin’s full approval) orchestrated cyberattacks designed to influence the 2016 contest, and also pushed fake news.
But the hack, and release via WikiLeaks, etc., of Democratic e-mails produced nothing game-changing. The biggest impact was to confirm the obvious: The Democratic National Committee favored Hillary Clinton from the start.
And fake news mainly feeds people’s existing prejudices — which serves Putin’s goal of undermining our democracy, but fails to flip votes from one party to the other.