This week, the Special Counsel’s office is expected to provide the public with a detailed breakdown of their expenditures over the last year, giving Americans their first glimpse into exactly how much the Trump/Russia investigation is costing us. But in the meantime, ABC News is reporting that according to their sources, Robert Mueller and his team of 16 lawyers, several dozen FBI agents, and all of the related expenses that come with the work of investigating the president have cost taxpayers more than $5 million.

So far.

President Trump has signaled in recent days that he would like to see Mueller’s investigation (and the accompanying investigations in Congress) come to a close by the end of the year, but that’s looking increasingly unlikely. As ABC News puts it, “investigations of this nature can take years to resolve and run into the tens of millions of dollars.” And in an investigation whose scope appears to be expanding with every passing day, there’s really no telling how long it could last or how much public money it could consume.

As it happens, what little the public has learned about the fruit of this investigation has, thus far, had little or nothing to do with the supposed POINT of Mueller’s inquiry – Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election and the Trump campaign’s alleged collusion with Moscow in those endeavors. Mueller has indicted Paul Manafort and Rick Gates in front of a grand jury, but none of the charges have anything to do with their time on the Trump team. Michael Flynn and George Papadopoulos have pleaded guilty to lying to FBI investigators, but it’s hard to connect their lies to the Big Democrat Legend of Collusion. Flynn was a member of the presidential transition team when he spoke to the Russian ambassador. He was less than a month away from being the official U.S. National Security Adviser. We’re really going to sit here and pretend like there was some conspiracy of wrongdoing? It’s patently ridiculous. If anyone believes that this is the first time a presidential transition team has gotten a head start on the incoming president’s agenda, well, then you must be the kind of idiot who thinks Mueller is actually going to put Trump in prison.

$5 million is $5 million, but the problem really has nothing to do with the money being wasted on this pathetic witch hunt. The problem is that we have Democratic operatives trying to use every legal and illegal tool they can find to bring down a duly-elected President of the United States. It is stopping Trump’s agenda cold in its tracks, it is denying him the full powers of the White House, and it is seeding doubt in our most important allies. Worse than all of that, it is accomplishing exactly what Putin wanted to achieve, which is to chip away at America’s faith in democracy.