The Trump storm could hit with lightning & thunder any day now…if Mueller has something important to disclose & prefers not to disrupt the election with negative news in the final 60 days prior. By Trump storm I mean that hurricane is about to hit Trump directly as a potential category 5. Based on that 60-day window, there’s plenty of speculation something dramatic could come out next week, so stay tuned. We know the Trump storm is coming, we just don’t know when or the punch it may have. If nothing hits soon, it’s possible Mueller is overwhelmed with evidence & isn’t yet ready to unleash a bombshell, in which case things could go quiet till after the midterms. The scandal has taken a dangerous turn for Trump the past couple weeks, which here is a brief summary: real_bad_news_for_trump_darcy. With the walls closing in, Trump is reportedly having bouts where his temper has been going off the rails. This could soon spark a constitutional crisis should in a fit of rage he does something rash, like firing Sessions or pardoning Manafort.
In such cases where Trump takes dramatic steps to undermine special counsel, Mueller may hurriedly put together his obstruction report, as Trump keeps adding to that clear evidence through his own actions (richard-blumenthal-theres-a-credible-case-of-obstruction-of-justice-right-now-against-trump). Plus Congress should rightly move quickly to protect Mueller & seriously discuss impeachment proceedings (assuming they still have any respect whatsoever for our constitutional rule of law) should Trump abuse his power by doing something crazy. If Trump, Rudy & the evil echo orchestrate events that could threaten to end or sabotage the probe, it’s possible Mueller at that point could keep the case alive by handing off some of the investigations to the states wherever they would have jurisdiction. The Southern District of NY is already conducting a criminal investigation of the Trump Organization, offering up huge legal risks for the whole Trump family.
Showing more desperation than ever, Trump is now trying to claim the Mueller probe is illegal (absurd), as Rudy is busily preparing a report to counter Mueller (probably realizing Mueller has tons of damaging fodder on them). The prez is also threatening to interject himself into the DOJ/FBI for getting involved in the Russia investigation (fascist talk). And in an absurdity beyond absurd, he’s trying to say that Lester Holt interview from last year is not authentic, that somehow it was “fudged,” when the reality is he flat-out said on an NBC video he fired Comey because of that “Russier thing” (see articles about that Trump obstruction of justice in the middle of part 2). The level of madness now seen in the prez could show they know the Trump storm is ready to make landfall with Mueller being the eye of the hurricane.
If the Trump-Rudy tandem indeed know something serious is about to land, that explains why the prez is ratcheting up the Twitter distractions to counter the coming Trump storm. If the code of conduct from prosecutors really is to not come out with damaging stuff 60 days prior to an election which would politicize the campaign, that is why next week could be interesting as seen from mueller-trump-russia-justice-department-60-day-rule. At any given moment, we may find out about new indictments for close Trump aides, new evidence further implicating Trump, a Trump subpoena, an obstruction report, or something surprising totally out of left field. The anticipation is palatable for many of us. Mueller’s team is disciplined enough not to leak, so when they do have something to say, it could be an enormous headline putting the whole Trump presidency in impending peril.
Impeachment vs. Annulment?
They can’t even defend themselves, so they attack the investigators
As we see in excerpts from giulianis-telling-defense-himself-all-that-matters-is-that-mueller-is-undermined, with the evidence piling up on multiple fronts, Rudy has come around to find out Team-Trump cannot win the legal argument anymore. So his entire strategy is to distract & distort in discredited Mueller, to keep the base on their side no matter what crimes the special counsel ultimately finds, in order to win the political argument enough to keep Congress from impeaching his client:
In a new profile, the New York Times gets at a question we’ve all been asking for months: What on earth is Rudy Giuliani doing? Once known as “America’s mayor,” he’s become the fire-breathing legal spokesman for the most divisive president in recent history, often spewing obvious contradictions in Donald Trump’s defense and even appearing to question the existence of objective truth. Basically nobody has bought into Trump’s style or hitched their legacy to Trump like Giuliani, who might otherwise have ridden off into the political sunset as an American uniter. So how does Giuliani account for his often-bizarre advocacy for Trump? What to make of his frequent apparent missteps and goal-post moving? Doesn’t Giuliani care about consistency and providing an accurate accounting of the Russia investigation? In a word: No. Giuliani doesn’t really care about all that.
He has admitted that he aims “to attack the legitimacy of the investigation” and said he’s mostly preparing for the potential impeachment battle lying ahead — given that it appears Mueller doesn’t believe he can indict a sitting president. “It is for public opinion, because eventually the decision here is going to be impeach, not impeach,” Giuliani said in May. But the latest comment is especially telling. Giuliani isn’t just saying that the investigation is illegitimate — as he has many times before — or that he’s preparing for the after-action. He’s admitting that job No. 1 is to undermine the man in charge of it. It’s the end that justifies all the unholy means. It’s the thing that makes him a good lawyer for his client. It’s often said that politics ain’t beanbag, and that’s true. We should probably expect that a lawyer like Giuliani would have this goal, and it’s certainly what Trump demands of his lawyers. But what’s remarkable here is the wager that Giuliani has placed on that whole strategy, his admission that it is all just a strategy and the cost at which it may come for him personally. Giuliani’s defense of himself isn’t, “What I’m saying is just the truth,” but instead, “What I’m saying is working because it’s tearing down my opponent,” who happens to be a respected longtime law enforcement official. It’s a uniquely Trumpian philosophy, so perhaps it’s only appropriate that it’s become Trump’s chief line of defense in an increasingly embattled presidency.
Another Impeachment Poll
I’m quite confident impeachment is very possible, despite the cast of characters like Trump, Rudy, Fox & the rest of the echo bamboozling their fans by hiding the severity of the Russian evidence. Look at this summary of a poll posted below from poll-44-percent-want-congress-to-begin-impeachment-proceedings-against-trump showing nearly half of Americans are ready for impeachment already. I think another poll in today’s part 3 even shows 49% now favor impeachment! And the public knowledge has barely skimmed the surface of what Mueller knows, with evidence of his most serious crimes still being gathered & waiting to be revealed. Those impeachment numbers would spike well into a majority once proof of crimes comes out:
A new Axios/Survey Monkey poll released Tuesday reveals 44 percent of respondents want Congress to begin impeachment proceedings against President Trump. Stances on impeachment among respondents fell sharply along party lines, with 79 percent of Democrats favoring the move, compared to 49 percent of independents and 8 percent of Republicans saying the same. The poll was conducted after Trump’s longtime personal lawyer Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to charges of bank fraud, tax fraud and campaign finance law violations. Cohen’s campaign finance law violations stem from payments the lawyer arranged during the campaign to women who allegedly had affairs with Trump. Cohen said he made the payments at the direction of “a federal candidate for office,” seemingly implicating the president. A majority, 64 percent, of Americans believe that Trump ordered Cohen to make the payments. Those numbers too are largely divided along party lines, with 93 percent of Democrats believing Trump directed the payments, compared to 66 percent of independents and 38 percent of Republicans.
Misc News on Russia Scandal
President Trump’s advisers and allies are increasingly worried that he has neither the staff nor the strategy to protect himself from a possible Democratic takeover of the House, which would empower the opposition party to shower the administration with subpoenas or even pursue impeachment charges. Within Trump’s orbit, there is consensus that his current legal team is not equipped to effectively navigate an onslaught of congressional demands, and there has been broad discussion about bringing on new lawyers experienced in white-collar defense and political scandals. This account of the president and his team grappling with a potential crisis is based on interviews this week with 26 White House officials, presidential advisers, and lawyers and strategists close to the administration, most of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity to be candid.
One source of growing anxiety among Trump allies is the worry that the president and some senior White House officials are not anxious enough. Although Trump sometimes talks about impeachment with his advisers, in other moments, he gets mad that “the i-word,” as he calls it, is raised, according to his associates. “Winter is coming,” said one Trump ally in close communication with the White House. “Assuming Democrats win the House, which we all believe is a very strong likelihood, the White House will be under siege. But it’s like tumbleweeds rolling down the halls over there. Nobody’s prepared for war.”
Sessions on Hot Seat
Speaking of winter storms, firing Sessions would cause a major Trump storm, which could also get quite complicated as seen in trump-firing-jeff-sessions-looks-more-likely-than-ever-heres-storm-that-awaits. It’s reported Sessions is safe till after the midterms, but his days are numbered. The prez just can’t get over the AG recusing himself on the Russian case. Among other complaints is Trump can’t stand Sessions’ southern accent (but isn’t Dixie the heart of Trump’s base?). A constitutional crisis may await us in November, especially should Trump try to replace Sessions with a lackey willing to disrupt or fire Mueller. The risk comes in from Trump trying to sneak that person into the AG slot who was previously confirmed by the Senate for a different position. The legalities for attempting that lateral move without the Senate’s approval is still an open question.
Did Trump Have Prior Knowledge?
There’s something very fishy about this next story: cnn-stands-story-whether-trump-knew-meeting. Did Cohen’s lawyer originally make a false statement? Or might have Mueller reined him in since Davis prematurely spilled the beans on an ongoing investigation, plus a deal may still be in the works for Cohen’s full cooperation. Supposedly CNN does have other sources besides Davis for that story. The facts about Trump’s prior knowledge of the Trump Tower meeting have yet to come out. That strong possibility would be a key peg to the collusion case.
It’s been rumored White House lawyer Don McGahn would be leaving after the Kavanaugh nomination to the Supreme Court was finalized. But Trump just sealed the deal with a surprise tweet confirming the impending departure. Also leaving is the White House ethics lawyer, perhaps because his job was impossible. McGahn’s fate was probably sealed when it was made public he recently spent plenty of time with Mueller laying out Trump’s mental state & intentions involving a number of suspicious actions over the Russian case. As has been Trump’s pattern, he looks to purge anyone who has any knowledge of the Russia scandal & whom he doesn’t trust to be totally loyal to him. These excerpts come from trump-says-white-house-counsel-don-mcgahn-to-exit-in-the-fall:
White House counsel Don McGahn’s office is just one floor up from the Oval, but it might as well be miles away. In recent months, the president has sometimes gone days — or longer — without having substantial conversations with McGahn as their relationship has grown increasingly strained, according to two people familiar with the matter. “They just kind of avoided each other for the most part,” one former administration official told POLITICO. Another Republican close to the White House said they discuss nothing but essential work business. People who know both men said their mutual frustrations are often manifested in silence, rather than massive blow-ups. But the two have also had several heated clashes that often stemmed from Trump’s steadfast belief that McGahn hasn’t done enough to minimize the Russia investigation, according to four current and former administration officials and others close to both men. One outside associate of McGahn’s said it always bothered Trump that McGahn was “his own man and wouldn’t kowtow to him.” McGahn’s eventual departure — whether after the midterms or after the anticipated confirmation of Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh — has long been seen as a foregone conclusion in the White House. But McGahn and others close to the president were nevertheless surprised when Trump tweeted about it on Wednesday, according to two people close to the White House, ensuring that McGahn would have no choice but to go.
McGahn threatened to resign last year after Trump ordered him to explore the possibility of firing Mueller, though the president eventually backed down. Trump was furious when news of his interest in firing Mueller was first reported by The New York Times in January, and he pressured McGahn to publicly dispute the story, according to a person familiar with the issue. The White House denies that Trump has pushed to fire Mueller. The president also tried without success to get his then-staff secretary, Rob Porter, to warn McGahn that he could be fired if he didn’t deny the article, the person said. McGahn generated a fresh round of headlines earlier this month after the Times reported that he had spoken with Mueller’s investigators for more than 30 hours over the past nine months. In the White House, McGahn, who is seen as a savvy operator, has increasingly separated himself from dealing with the West Wing response to the Russia probe, leaving that to other administration lawyers. McGahn has focused largely on judicial nominees and ensuring that Trump’s Supreme Court picks are confirmed. Although much of the recent coverage of McGahn has focused on his cooperating role in the Mueller probe and his selection of judicial nominees, including two Supreme Court picks, he’s also played an integral, behind-the-scenes role in Trump’s efforts to roll back regulations, and he’s told allies he hopes that ends up as much a part of his legacy as the reshaping of the court system.
Bruce Ohr latest figure on echo hit list
The new boogeyman Trump & his echo seek to demonize is Bruce Ohr, looking for anyone they can pin the blame for the Russian scandal, which the Trump-world corruption is really to blame. Ohr is an expert on Russian spying, so when he heard of credible evidence the Russians had compromised Trump during the campaign, he did what was right by our nation in pursuing it: ap-sources-lawyer-was-told-russia-had-trump-over-a-barrel. A couple of the more popular conspiracies from echo-land are easily debunked here, as claiming Bruce Ohr was biased because his wife worked for Fusion GPS (trump-points-to-nellie-ohrs-fluency-in-russian-job-at-fusion-gps), or Andrew McCabe was biased since his wife ran for public office as a Dem, is as asinine as making an argument Kellyanne Conway is biased against the prez because her husband is a known Trump critic. Here’s an article speculating why Trump picks out the enemies he does inside the DOJ/FBI: trumps-top-targets-in-the-russia-probe-are-experts-in-organized-crime. This next group of articles explore what’s really behind this unjustifiable smearing of Ohr:
Do a WaPo search
As the leader of the free world, Trump is destroying our status & reputation, which could have disastrous ramifications: allies-they-are-waverin. And we need to have the proper perspective on Russia: john-mccain-sounds-the-alarm-on-trump-and-russia-in-new-documentary-active-measures. In wrapping up the week, you can do a search for these excellent articles from the Washington Post the past couple days. With my web-hosting company recommending limits to the number of outbound links, the titles below are not live links, but you can easily find them on the search engines. It could be a weekend project. You may need to subscribe to WaPo if you hit your monthly limit, but it’s worth it.
We need to stay informed & warn others about how truly dangerous our president is, which every day he seems to keep getting worse. An unhinged leader has the power to take down his country if we don’t stop him. So TheVORACS will be back again with 3 more messages in a week, unless a major headline story breaks before that. These WaPo op-eds are very insightful if you look them up: