Tuesday, July 25, 2017
The Wave Begins To Crest
The next-to-next-to-latest news gem in the ongoing saga of Trump and the Russians is that Trump is supposed to have questioned some loose-lipped lawyers in the White House about pardons -- i.e. whether he could pardon unnamed people, or even himself. As more than one news pundit has noted, this is a remarkable echo of Richard Nixon's actions during the Watergate scandal. Coincidence, or a deliberate tease?
Along with this was another leak by a loose-lipped White House insider that Trump was checking to see if he could fire Mueller. Oooh, shades of Watergate again! Enough to keep the Liberals panting. Mueller himself made it clear that he would not go down easily, nor be swayed by any such threats. And of course Trump took absolutely no action in that direction. And why should he? He was only poking at Mueller to see if he'd fold or fight -- plus teasing the Democrats/Liberals again. He really wants a guy with guts and integrity in charge of the investigation!
The next-to-latest juicy bit is that Trump is now throwing Jeff Sessions under the bus, supposedly because Sessions recused himself on the Trump-and-the-Russians investigation when he should have stood fast. Uhuh. I'm sure that excuse will satisfy the foaming-reactionary segment of Trump's supporters, seeing that Sessions is the last of their crowd whom Trump appointed to high office -- and who were shot down for various reasons (leaving their jobs to more "moderate" -- or at least rational -- candidates, which I suspect was Trump's plan all along).
Ah, but the latest and greatest piece of news is that Jared Kushner is testifying to Congress -- in a closed (secret) session -- under oath, about all he knows of the Russian Caper. I daresay they'll get quite an unexpected earful. Just how much of it they'll be able to leak, in turn, to the media and therefore the public, is a good question.
Pause here for a couple flashbacks.
Remember that when Trump had that fateful last meeting with Comey, that the then-Director of the FBI at first claimed that there was nobody else in the room. Only later did anyone mention that there actually was a third person there, whom Comey had overlooked as a mere secretary -- but who turned out to be no less than the Director of the CIA. How did Comey miss that? Either Comey was incredibly inept at his job or CIA directors -- like their agents -- are very good at not being noticed. Or both.
Second flashback: recall that when Trump Jr. had that meeting with the Russian lawyer in Trump Tower 'way back last June, the number of people at that meeting was enough, as Rachel Maddows pointed out, to have filled the elevator. There was Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, various other members of the presidential campaign, two or three Russians, and... on the Trump side of the table, an overlooked translator. An overlooked and forgotten translator. Uhuh.
So what is Kushner telling that congressional committee in closed session? My bet is that he'll tell them about his connection with the CIA, and that just might lead into his father-in-law's CIA connection too. And who/what do you think that "assistant" was that filed the paperwork for his security clearance? Now think about the implications of that. It means that the Russians went trawling the Trump campaign, and called up a school of sharks. No wonder they only talked about the trade-sanctions in distant terms of international orphan adoptions, and Kushner arranged to leave the meeting early. The Russians, when they exited, left a dossier on the table which was supposed to contain juicy dirt on Hillary, but the Trump team never used it -- most likely because that "overlooked translator" grabbed it first, trotted it over to the CIA office, and then pronounced it untrustworthy. We do know that the hacked Democrat emails which showed up soon afterwards on Wikileaks didn't have anything really good on Hillary -- and really didn't effect the outcome of the election.
Now, how much of this will Mueller and company agree to reveal to the public? Tell all, and they pretty well exonerate Trump, embarrass hell out of the Democrats, and discredit huge chunks of the media. Tell too little, and of course they look as if they're covering up for Trump and the Russians. Besides, the Democrats and the media will only yell for more blood and demand that the committee put Trump himself on the stand -- and he could reveal a helluva lot more. The other shoe has got to drop sometime -- and the longer the wait, the bigger the impact.
I think (and I suspect Trump does too) that Mueller will do the honorable thing and tell all. That means the political wave is cresting and about to break. The whole Get Trump movement will be discredited, disintegrate into the embarrassed/quiet and the hysterical/loud.
And you'll hear long laughter from the briar-patch.