Donald Trump Jr. sought damaging information on Hillary Clinton from Russian sources after being told that the government ruling that nation wanted to help elect his father.

That’s not fake news or a witch hunt. It’s the testimony of the man himself as contained in his e-mail

For the majority of Americans who do not trust Donald Trump, as calculated in both polls and the popular vote, this is alarming only because it erases any doubts. While we knew about Russian meddling because of testimony under oath broadcast for everyone to see, this is the first official confirmation from inside the Trump entourage.

As such, it is inspiring efforts to review who said what and when, to figure out which people in the campaign and administration did not know how strong the Russian ties were and which ones were lying.

It also is inspiring more efforts to figure out who is doing what to whom inside the White House, who is leaking stories that damage one key player to diminish the status of some or enhance the status of others.

As important as all of this is, we need to follow the stories by keeping some important perspectives in mind.

First, if we know this much now, we can only imagine what else the special counsel investigating Russian meddling knows and will find out. As we know from similar investigations in the past, these efforts are methodical and time consuming. They are wide-ranging and very likely to answer many of the questions that seem to hover on the edges of the main story, especially ones concerning investments and banks and the pressures they can exert.

Second, we need to understand that for all we think we know, there are going to be many surprises ahead. Until this past week, nobody had focused on Trump Jr., nobody had ever put him in the center of anything. As we learn more about how the campaign and administration really function, or fail to function in so many ways, we get a clear sense of what we have in our current president, what we need as a nation and how large that gap really is.

Republican leaders in Congress need to stick by Trump. They have no choice if they want to cut taxes on the wealthy, take health care away from the middle class and poor and remove regulations opposed by industries that are cashing in on their generous campaign contributions.

We can march, rally, write letters and post on Facebook but our real power comes at the ballot box.

Those who are fed up, who believe that the nation is heading in a different and bad direction need to take it back and they can do that by voting.

Those who really worry about the future of the nation can start along the road back to sanity and respect by letting these candidates for election and re-election know that we have taken note of their actions and that there is a price to be paid for them.

— Times Herald-Record, Middletown, New York