My certainty stems from past observations. In the lead up to Trump’s inauguration, and even immediately after it, we saw relentless leaks from intelligence community sources of any and every tiny shred that advanced the “Trump colluded with Putin” line. If the anti-Trump elements in the IC had anything remotely concrete on Trump — a “smoking gun” — I believe they would’ve leaked it by now. It’s a partisan witch hunt, and feels more and more like it every day.
Now, it’s fair to say the “wiretap”-turned-surveillance-turned-unmasking storyline is a partisan campaign in response to the Russia witch hunt, but the difference is that the unmasking scandal is on a lot more solid ground than the Russia allegations.