A real President would promise to find out just how deeply Russia has influenced his Administration. Then there’s Donald Trump….Three days ago, I wrote a post I titled “After Michael Flynn’s resignation, Donald will be out for blood.” In it, I wrote
Donald lost tonight, and every time he’s lost he’s gone on Twitter or stood before an audience to rant against whoever was responsible for his loss. I anticipate that Donald will attack the media again for reporting the facts about Flynn and his Russia contacts. And I expect he’ll instruct his new Attorney General to figure out who in the FBI was investigating Flynn, and who leaked the information that Flynn was being investigated….
Two days ago, we learned that Donald knew about Flynn’s Russia contacts, and that Flynn had lied about them, since January 26. And supposedly, Flynn was asked to resign because of “eroding trust” between him and Donald. Riiiight.
I don’t know about anyone else, but if I found out my National Security Advisor had been lying to me and was susceptible to blackmail by foreign powers as a result of it, I’d have fired him almost immediately, not waited two weeks until the media broke the story and forced my hand. Because, you know, national security. But maybe that’s because I take stuff like this seriously, rather than treating the Presidency like a business investment.
And yet, since Flynn “resigned,” Donald has been doing exactly what I predicted – attacking the media for reporting the story and attacking the intelligence agencies and the FBI for leaking information about the investigation. Observe:
Between when Flynn “resigned” and publication of this post, half of Donald’s tweets from his @realDonaldJTrump account have been related to Flynn and Russia in some way. And today the New York Times reports that Donald has asked Stephen A. Feinberg, a friendly billionaire with connections to Steve Bannon and Donald’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to investigate the leaks on Donald’s behalf. Here’s a gem about Feinberg:
Mr. Bannon and Mr. Kushner, according to current and former intelligence officials and Republican lawmakers, had at one point considered Mr. Feinberg for either director of national intelligence or chief of the Central Intelligence Agency’s clandestine service, a role that is normally reserved for career intelligence officers, not friends of the president. Mr. Feinberg’s only experience with national security matters is his firm’s stakes in a private security company and two gun makers.
And yet, in the middle of all this, Donald celebrated signing of House Joint Resolution 41, which overturned an Obama regulation on oil, gas, and mineral extraction companies that would have forced them to disclose their payments to foreign governments, and for which projects the payments were made.
Like the new Secretary of State and former CEO of ExxonMobil, Rex Tillerson, once would have had to disclose about ExxonMobil’s payments to Russia.