DB: Here's how the Intelligence community described the "interference".
On October 7, 2016, the ODNI and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) jointly stated that the U.S. Intelligence Community was confident that the Russian Government directed recent hacking of e-mails with the intention of interfering with the U.S. election process. According to the ODNI′s January 6, 2017 report, the Russian military intelligence service (GRU) had hacked the servers of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the personal Google email account of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta and forwarded their contents to WikiLeaks. In January 2017, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper testified that Russia also interfered in the elections by disseminating fake news that was promoted on social media.
Wow, so Russian might have tried to influence a U.S. election??? So what ELSE is new? Shocking, right - well, not exactly: http://time.com/4851449/trump-jr-russian-kennedy-history/
They always tried to devious ways of influencing or damaging the U.S.!
DB: However, the issue here is not necessarily whether the Russian interference and influence campaign were effective. The real issue is whether or not the Trump campaign was aware of and/or cooperated with the interference and influence campaign of a hostile foreign government.
Yes, IF the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to influence the campaign. But if that merely includes accepting documents or information from them that could be damaging to the Clintons - THAT is NOT colluding with the campaign. It's utilizing whatever evidences one can find. You think the Clintons and virtually all presidential campaigns don't build a dossier on opponents? Of course they do, always have. But such is not colluding/plotting with foreign governments.
Whatever, A) we don't have a shred of proof of colluding with the Russians, and B) it is pure fiction that the Russian's won the election for Trump. Clearly, there has been much animosity between Putin and Trump. MANY millions of moderate to conservative voters - people who despised the Clintons and viewed them as dangerous, corrupt opportunists, nonetheless did not vote? Why? Because they couldn't stomach Trump's often-ridiculous nonsense and gameshow-host approach to politics, his crassness and juvenile obsessions. This tells me that a more respectful, sober/reasonable-talking conservative would have made the election far greater loss of Clinton. And millions of conservatives who didn't like many things about Trump (like me), nonetheless held their noses and voted Trump, as they viewed the Clintons as far more likely to take us further down a road already paved with 8 years of destructive policies and appointments. If anything, the hacking and leaking of Democratic emails by the Russians merely FURTHER revealed what the those who already despised the Clintons already thought about them - because now they were seeing even further proof of how they had long been operating. These leaks helped open a lot of people's eyes, but traditional Democrats were still not about to vote for Trump.
All that said, Trump has a LOT of flaws. He is an absolute idiot for involving his family in the White House inner circle. You don't get to be a billionaire without tons of connections worldwide. I should be no surprise that Russians used intermediaries to try to gain influence. But that the Trump campaign COLLUDED with them - zero proof of that presently exists! And now we see that Mueller's top aide was foaming-at-the-mouth Trump hater. NO freaking WONDER Hillarie's email probe fizzled out!
But make no mistake, IF the Trump campaign plotted with the Russians to grab the election, All guilty heads should roll!