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Special counsel Robert Mueller. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Special counsel Robert Mueller concurs with the Intelligence Community's assessment that the Russian government carried out a sophisticated, multi-pronged campaign to interfere in the 2016 election, per Attorney General William Barr’s letter summarizing the investigation’s findings.

Why it matters: Absent a bipartisan effort to combat this threat, Russian meddling may continue to disrupt American democracy.

Background: Russia's meddling didn’t stop on election day in 2016. The Kremlin seeded disinformation to influence the 2018 midterm elections and may have sought to compromise electoral infrastructure.

  • Russia's campaigns spread propaganda and disseminate private information with the aim of sowing discord among Americans.

What's new: A social media campaign is already underway to spread falsehoods about 2020 presidential candidates, and it appears foreign state actors are behind at least some of that activity. Elements of the campaign resemble the information operations Russia has deployed to misinform and polarize voters.

What to watch: Per Barr's letter, more information on the results of Mueller’s investigation should be publicly released. That could help social media companies, journalists and national security professionals draw lessons for combating future interference.

Jessica Brandt is a fellow at the German Marshall Fund and the head of policy and research for its Alliance for Securing Democracy.

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Sports

MLB enters first lockout since '95 as deal expires

Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred (L) and Major League Baseball Players Association executive director Tony Clark. Photo: Matt King/MLB via Getty Images

Major League Baseball's collective bargaining agreement expired at 11:59 p.m. ET Wednesday without a new deal in place.

Why it matters: With no CBA, the MLB is in a management lockout — the first work stoppage since a 1994-95 strike led to the cancelation of the World Series for the first time in 90 years.

Media giants back Bannon's bid to release Jan. 6 documents

Former Trump adviser Steve Bannon at the FBI Washington Field Office in Washington, DC., in November. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

A coalition of news outlets including the Washington Post is supporting Stephen Bannon's campaign for the release of documents related to his contempt of Congress charges, WashPost reported Wednesday.

Why it matters: WashPost, the New York Times, CNN, NBC, the Wall Street Journal's parent company and others filed a motion arguing that a proposed protective order seeking to prevent the documents from being released violates the First Amendment, per the Daily Mail, which first reported on the news.

Symone Sanders leaving VP's office

Vice President Kamala Harris and her press secretary Symone Sanders. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Symone Sanders, senior advisor and chief spokesperson to Vice President Kamala Harris, is leaving the VP’s office by the end of this year, three White House officials told Axios on Wednesday.

Why it matters: The VP has faced an onslaught of criticism in her first year centered on her leadership and staff, adding to the suggestion, she’s not the Democratic Party’s preferred nominee for 2024.