The anti-Trump media was buzzing like bees over the latest allegations of collusion with Russia.

They thought they finally found the smoking gun that proved the Trump campaign coordinated with Moscow to rig the 2016 election.

And then one email blew the lid off the investigation.

Documents turned over to the Senate Judiciary Committee alleged to show Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner received an email about a “Russian backdoor overture” from intermediaries acting on behalf of Aleksander Torshin, an elected official who supposedly has ties to Vladimir Putin.

The media took this as evidence that Russian officials were looking for ways to penetrate the Trump campaign so they could compromise them or collude with them.

But this story quickly fell apart.

Kushner rejected the meeting.

And the emails proposing the encounter were on behalf of the owner of a Pennsylvania pipe fitting company who also did work on Christian and veterans advocacy.

The Daily Caller reports:

An offer of a “Russian backdoor overture” that made its way to Jared Kushner last year was initiated by a devout Christian with concern for veterans and not Russian operatives devising a plan to collude with the Trump campaign.

Johnny Yenason, the owner of a Pennsylvania-based pipefitting company, says that it was his Christian and veterans advocacy work that prompted him to reach out in May 2016 to Aleksander Torshin, the deputy chairman of Russia’s central bank, and his associate, Maria Butina.

That outreach effort, which made its way from Yenason to a friend of his named Rick Clay and then to members of the Trump campaign, became the subject of intense scrutiny last Friday after the Senate Judiciary Committee sent a letter to Kushner, a White House senior adviser and Trump’s son-in-law, accusing him of improperly withholding the email exchange…

… But in interviews with The Daily Caller this week, Yenason directly disputed that Torshin or Butina made any outreach to the Trump team.

Yenason says that while Clay’s email — entitled “Russian backdoor overture and dinner meeting” — does suggest that Torshin sought a session with Trump, Clay “misstated” his message to the campaign.

“Rick’s email may have stated that, but that was not communicated to me in any of the requests or emails that I exchanged with [Butina and Torshin],” Yenason said.

The Daily Caller reports it reviewed Yenason’s email correspondence with the Russians and there was no evidence the Russians tried to dupe him into participating in an intelligence operation.

Yenason said he met Torshin in 2016 at a National Russian Prayer Breakfast and they spoke about their Christian principles.

He wanted to invite Torshin and his associate, Maria Butina, to speak at a fundraising event he was hosting for the Hershel Woody Williams Medal of Honor Foundation, which was to be held the day before Trump spoke at the National Rifle Association Convention.

Both Butina and Torshin were lifetime members of the NRA, and Butina ran a gun rights group in Russia.

This is where Yenason reached out about a meeting between the Russians and Trump.

He forwarded along their bios and the answer came back that the Trump campaign had rejected the meeting.

This story is another in a long line of overhyped stories with sensationalized headlines about meetings and secret emails between the Trump campaign and Russia.

But the reports crumble to dust under even the slightest scrutiny.