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This is *not* what "direct evidence" is. An email, text or testimony excerpt is "direct evidence" *only* if it directly supports or refutes the matter in dispute (e.g., if the defendant committed the crime charged). This wildly broad definition makes Ken's misreporting *worse*.
1/ So Ken is now saying *Burr* says the Senate has no "emails, texts, or testimony" suggesting collusion. But even had Ken correctly interpreted the sum of Burr's remarks, we would say Burr says there's no *confession or eyewitness accusation* in email, text, or testimonial form.
2/ The *overwhelming majority" of "emails, texts, or testimony" from co-conspirators in any conspiracy case is what's called *circumstantial evidence*—which Burr's full interview *acknowledges exists*. So, for instance, Manafort agreeing to meet Kilimnik is not "direct evidence."
3/ In contrast, if the Senate had evidence Manafort emailed Kilimnik to offer the Kremlin agent proprietary campaign polling data after he knew the Kremlin was waging a propaganda war, *that* would be direct evidence of aiding and abetting. An offer of private briefings—the same.
4/ This is likely why Sen. Mark Warner—Burr's Democratic counterpart—had to publicly disagree with Burr's comment about "direct evidence": because the Senate *does* have direct evidence of collusion, which I know because the *public* does and the Senate has what we have and more.
5/ Ken's vague tweet misdefining "direct evidence" actually *worsens* his erroneous summary of Burr's interview with CBS by *broadening significantly* the category of what Burr says (already incorrectly!) the Senate Intel Committee *doesn't* have. Sheesh, Ken! OK—now to bed. /end
NOTE/ This thread is about "direct evidence [of a collusive crime]"—what Ken, Burr, and I are all discussing. Obviously "direct evidence" could also relate to a relevant fact that's not the fact of a crime itself (e.g., a photo of two men meeting may be direct evidence they met).
NOTE2/ So when Ken summarizes Burr as saying "no direct evidence of collusion," Ken is claiming that *Burr* says there is no evidence that directly proves a collusive conspiracy (e.g. a confession, an eyewitness accusing someone of a crime, or a photo of a crime being committed).
NOTE3/ When Ken defines "direct evidence" as "emails, text messages or the testimony of co-conspirators," and then says *Burr* says "there's no direct evidence of collusion," he makes it sound like the Senate has no "emails, messages, or testimony" from potential co-conspirators.
NOTE4/ The reason Ken doesn't define "direct evidence" with clarity is that it would gut his story. Imagine if he'd written, "Burr Says Senate Has No Collusion Confession or Contract." Would anyone have been surprised or cared? (Even though we *do* have confessions?) No. So—this.
NOTE5/ An accurate story would have analyzed the full Burr interview and acknowledged its contradictions—summarizing even the Burr pull-quote as "Burr implies the Senate has no collusion confession or contract." It would *then* discuss the Zamel and Kilimnik confessions we have.
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