Journalist Aaron Maté, who writes for The Nation and Real Clear Investigations, dropped a bombshell today on Twitter.

Maté revealed that a federal judge has issued a significant rebuke of a major claim by special counsel Robert Mueller. In his report, Mueller tied Concord, a private Russian company, to the Russian government:

Federal judge has issued a significant rebuke of a core Mueller claim. Mueller claims that the IRA — a Russian troll farm — was the 2nd of “two principal interference operations” by Russian gov’t. But as judge notes, Mueller’s implied link between IRA & Russian gov’t was false:

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On July 5th, Mate wrote in Real Clear Investigations:

At a May press conference capping his tenure as special counsel, Robert Mueller emphasized what he called “the central allegation” of the two-year Russia probe. The Russian government, Mueller sternly declared, engaged in “multiple, systematic efforts to interfere in our election, and that allegation deserves the attention of every American.” Mueller’s comments echoed a January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) asserting with “high confidence” that Russia conducted a sweeping 2016 election influence campaign. “I don’t think we’ve ever encountered a more aggressive or direct campaign to interfere in our election process,” then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told a Senate hearing.

While the 448-page Mueller report found no conspiracy between Donald Trump’s campaign and Russia, it offered voluminous details to support the sweeping conclusion that the Kremlin worked to secure Trump’s victory. The report claims that the interference operation occurred “principally” on two fronts: Russian military intelligence officers hacked and leaked embarrassing Democratic Party documents, and a government-linked troll farm orchestrated a sophisticated and far-reaching social media campaign that denigrated Hillary Clinton and promoted Trump.

But a close examination of the report shows that none of those headline assertions are supported by the report’s evidence or other publicly available sources. They are further undercut by investigative shortcomings and the conflicts of interest of key players involved.

None of this means that the Mueller report’s core finding of “sweeping and systematic” Russian government election interference is necessarily false. But his report does not present sufficient evidence to substantiate it. This shortcoming has gone overlooked in the partisan battle over two more highly charged aspects of Mueller’s report: potential Trump-Russia collusion and Trump’s potential obstruction of the resulting investigation. As Mueller prepares to testify before House committees later this month, the questions surrounding his claims of a far-reaching Russian influence campaign are no less important. They raise doubts about the genesis and perpetuation of Russiagate and the performance of those tasked with investigating it.

Maté notes that the judge said that the Mueller report claims they “established” that the Russia government interfered in the 2016 election, via Concord, a private Russian company. The judge also said Mueller never actually established a connection that linked Concord to the Russain government but only alleged it. Mate writes:

This inconsistency, confirmed by a DC judge, raises new Qs about the validity of Mueller’s claim of a “sweeping and systematic” Russian gov’t interference campaign. If Mueller was disingenuous in falsely trying to link it to Russian gov’t, what else was he disingenuous about?

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Maté explains how the judge’s ruling is a major blow to Mueller and to the entire “Russian Active Measure” talking point:

This is a major blow not just to Mueller but to the entire “Russian Active Measures” talking point. As the judge acknowledges, the IRA (which, btw, put out juvenile clickbait mostly unrelated to the election) is a private entity & Mueller never establishes a Kremlin connection.

I point out this disconnect in my latest piece: Mueller says the social media operation was the 2nd major component of a “sweeping and systematic” Russian gov’t interference campaign — yet he never actually shows how it’s connected to the Russian gov’t.

Mate asks a very relevant question: This inconsistency, confirmed by a DC judge, raises new Qs about the validity of Mueller’s claim of a “sweeping and systematic” Russian gov’t interference campaign. If Mueller was disingenuous in falsely trying to link it to Russian gov’t, what else was he disingenuous about?

The Nation reporter slams Mueller’s credibility:

I should clarify re: validity, above: given how disingenuous Mueller is overall — ignoring Steele dossier; obscuring how weak the official Papadopoulos predicate; omitting Kilimnik’s extensive State Dept ties & falsely hyping him as GRU indictment — this is only latest example.

According to Red State:

The judge says the Special Counsel’s office violated a rule in telling the public something that was not true:

Maté includes a link to the judge’s order in a tweet.

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