In short, they’re going to have to start all over, and it was already hard to begin with. Therefore, whatever they had before will be missing and what was already missing will be unrecoverable. Furthermore, some information that they get going forward will take the place of old information but still won’t be enough to get to conclusive findings. I’m not expert on these types of investigations, but I am very well-versed in what’s been going on with cyber security and have followed the Russia controversy from the beginning. It’s going to be tough, the FBI will see it through and with immense accuracy, but I don’t see the evidence adding up to an amount that meets any typical FBI standard that governs drawing conclusions. In this case, that standard would be much higher, and without tarnishing the FBI’s integrity, I don’t see how they can come up with a conclusion that is enough to make a final call on whether or not the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians. They hacked, they manipulated, and they influenced the outcome whether they changed the outcome or not–they do that in many many countries–but I don’t think we’ll ever know whether Trump helped or asked for it.
What can we do to give this investigation the best shot of succeeding? We need to demand visitor logs at the White House. We need to demand Trump’s tax returns and any tax returns of his close associates involved the campaign. We also absolutely need a special prosecutor. We DON’T have that. A special counsel is still not enough. Call your Congressperson and enforce that a compromise to at least get special counsel is not independent enough!