THE ATLANTIC: Russians ready to disrupt 2020 election

A monument to the people standing just outside St. Basil;’s Cathedral

By now, the narrative is well told: Russia assisted in Donald Trump winning the 2016 presidential election, and Trump has returned the favor by seeking to destroy longstanding democratic institutions.

You can argue that one among yourselves.

But as the Atlantic reports, the Russians are ready to aid Trump again this year, and they might get away with it again.

Our politics are even more raw and fractured than in 2016; our faith in government—and, perhaps, democracy itself—is further strained. The coronavirus may meaningfully exacerbate these problems; at a minimum, the pandemic is leeching attention and resources from election defense. The president, meanwhile, has dismissed Russian interference as a hoax and fired or threatened intelligence officials who have contradicted that narrative, all while professing his affinity for the very man who ordered this assault on American democracy. Fiona Hill, the scholar who served as the top Russia expert on Trump’s National Security Council, told me, “The fact that they faced so little consequence for their action gives them little reason to stop.”

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