I said this months ago – Mike “I led the Trump transition team” Pence is in this Russia scandal up to his eyeballs.
Jonathan MartinVerified account @jmartNYT Now Pence folks won’t rule out Pence met w Russians, after all those denials from Pence himself ? (via
@playbookplus https://mobile.twitter.com/i/web/status/885316072471121921 …
Holly O’Reilly @AynRandPaulRyan Mike Pence’s spks refuses to answer whether Pence had meetings with anyone from Russia. Three times he was asked. Three times he refused.
Here’s the video:
Horrible job at trying to distance Pence from this mess. After that video, I’m expecting Pence to be the next one shown to have met with the Russians, because – come on! – saying whether, or not, Pence met with anyone from Russia is only difficult if he met with the Russians.
As this scandal moves on I’m beginning to wonder if more than Team Trump met with Russians. Yeah, I’m looking at you, House and Senate Republicans. For a while I thought they were ignoring this in an attempt to implement their agenda, now I’m not so sure.
About my last point…
There was one new story on Wednesday that added an interesting detail to the saga and points to a possible larger conspiracy. McClatchy reported that House and Senate investigators as well as the Justice Department are looking at the Trump campaign’s digital operation, one of Jared Kushner’s pet projects (financed by big-daddy benefactor Robert Mercer), to determine if it may have worked with Russia’s sophisticated micro-targeting and propaganda program during the 2016 campaign.
McClatchy also reported that the Justice Department is looking into “whether Trump’s campaign pointed Russian cyber operatives to certain voting jurisdictions in key states – areas where Trump’s digital team and Republican operatives were spotting unexpected weakness in voter support for Hillary Clinton.”
If certain jurisdictions were targeted then it would seem Trump and co. would need help identifying those districts. I’m not seeing anyone on his team with the knowledge to accomplish this feat. I could be wrong, and if you think I am, could you point me to who (on Team Trump) would have access to that data? (That’s kinda a trick question for Trump supporters.)
Remember, the congressional leadership knew in 2015 that it was happening. Reuters has reported that the so-called Gang of Eight (Republican leaders in Congress) was told that Russian hackers were attacking the Democratic Party but that the information was so top secret they could not share it. As we know, hackers attacked the Democratic National Committee and the personal email of Clinton campaign chair John Podesta. But they also hacked the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and information gleaned from that hack was put to use in some 2016 campaigns for Congress.
Also recall that one month before Donald Trump Jr. took that meeting with the Russian lawyer, House Majority Leader Kevin “loose lips” McCarthy was talking about Trump’s connections to Vladimir Putin in a room full of Republicans:
Remember, Republicans lied about the McCarthy comment/conversation until the audiotape came forward, then they said it was a joke.
There’s a lot of punditry every day bemoaning the fact that President Trump refuses to admit that the Russian interference in the campaign happened, seeing it as a stubborn (and insulting) rejection of the U.S. intelligence community and a dangerous unwillingness to take needed action to prevent it happening again. But really, why is Trump the only one on the hook? The Republican leadership has turned a blind eye to what was happening since 2015. They knew. They may have even known more about it than Trump did, at least in the beginning. They did nothing about it then and have shown no signs that they plan to do anything in the future.
It’s not all on Donald Trump. He may been the principal beneficiary but the leaders of his party aided and abetted the crime. We may just learn that they benefited from it too.
I’m leaning that way, as well. After all, there are a LOT of Republicans on air calling Trump Jr.’s emails – that couldn’t be any clearer – a nothingburger. So much for patriotism and Country over Party.
As far as the Russia scandal… we’re only at the tip of the iceberg. My bet… this is about to explode.
We’re still at the Nixonian “Drip, Drip, Drip” point but it’s picking up speed. Junior gave it a big boost and at some point the drips will get up to torrent speed. As for the “nothingburger” game simple denial will change nothing at this point, we know a bunch and lots more is coming.