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After nearly two years and more than $25 million, the Mueller inves­ti­gation ended with the finding that special counsel Robert Mueller “did not establish that members of the Trump cam­paign con­spired or coor­di­nated with the Russian gov­ernment.”

This finding, however, directly con­tra­dicts the bold asser­tions of many Demo­c­ratic pres­i­dential hopefuls.

For example, Beto O’Rourke claimed, “You have a pres­ident, who in my opinion, beyond the shadow of a doubt, sought to, however ham-handedly, collude with the Russian gov­ernment — a foreign power — to undermine and influence our elec­tions, the sanctity of the ballot box, the ability for each and every single one of us to make informed deci­sions about those who seek to rep­resent us and hold posi­tions of public trust.”

Likewise, Sen. Kamala Harris (D‑Calif.) said, “We have foreign powers infecting the White House like malware.”

And Sen. Kirsten Gilli­brand (D‑N.Y.) wrote on Twitter that

“a cam­paign for Pres­ident of the United States should never be in the business of scheming with foreign adver­saries to tamper with our elec­tions. I just thought that went without saying.”

Although all of these state­ments were an attempt to smear Trump by painting him as an agent of the Russian gov­ernment who stole the 2016 election, they do make a valid point. As Gilli­brand said, pres­i­dential cam­paigns should never collude with foreign nations, and I believe that is an idea that all Amer­icans, regardless of party, believe in.

If the Democrats truly believe this, they should take a pledge to imme­di­ately appoint a special counsel to inves­tigate their own cam­paigns if elected pres­ident. I’m not accusing any of the current Demo­c­ratic can­di­dates of col­lusion, but pres­i­dential cam­paigns are vast, sprawling appa­ra­tuses, and the can­didate at the top cer­tainly does not know every action that every employee takes.

With that in mind, in the interest of pro­tecting the integrity of our elec­tions and the office of the pres­i­dency, the Demo­c­ratic can­di­dates for Pres­ident should commit to allowing an unbiased, outside observer to take a close look at all of the inner workings of their cam­paigns if they are elected to ensure that every­thing is on the up-and-up. In doing so, they would ensure that the will of the American people is truly rep­re­sented and prove that their con­dem­na­tions of foreign col­lusion with a pres­i­dential cam­paign are more than just empty political rhetoric.

Connor Kaeb is a George Wash­ington Fellow and a sophomore studying Pol­itics.