The long, ongoing narrative that the Russian government worked with President Donald Trump's campaign to defeat Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election has had a significant effect: The majority of Americans want a special prosecutor to investigate the accusation.
According to a CNN/ORC poll, 55 percent of respondents said they are at least somewhat concerned by news reports that insinuate a Trump-Russia conspiracy.
And 34 percent consider Russia a "very serious threat" to American democracy, which is up from 21 percent in May 2016.
Some observers have posited the possibility that a new Cold War could develop between the United States and Russia. The one that occurred in the 1970s and 1980s was fatal to millions of people in various countries around the world.
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"The Second Cold War will most likely take on that sort of character, as it is already, but in more places, with more deadly weapons, more terrorism, a greater death toll, less respect for national borders and, thus, with more dangers of escalation attached," wrote Sean O'Grady in The Independent. "Let's hope Iceland manages to keep out of the way; few others will."
Multiple people associated with Trump's campaign have been accused of speaking to Russian officials, including former national security adviser Michael Flynn, who resigned after it was revealed he spoke with the Russian ambassador after the election.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions is also under fire for speaking to the Russian ambassador during the 2016 presidential election.
Although other politicians, including Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri and Democratic Rep. Nancy Pelosi of California, have also met with the Russian ambassador, people associated with Trump are under extra scrutiny because of the allegations that Russian hackers somehow undermined Clinton's campaign.
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"Just like Hillary Clinton, Senator McCaskill has a major problem with the truth," said Scott Sloofman, spokesman for the conservative America Rising PAC, said in a statement, according to Politico. "In her rush to stand with Nancy Pelosi and Elizabeth Warren to score political points, McCaskill exposed herself as both a liar and a hypocrite."
"The Russian ambassador never called me. The Russian ambassador has never asked for a meeting with me," McCaskill later told reporters after it was revealed that she had met with and tweeted about meeting with the Russian ambassador several times.
"You cannot say that having a one-on-one meeting with the Russian ambassador was a common thing to occur," she said.