Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Why The Latest Russia Story Is Just Another Trump Witch Hunt

By Michael Goodwin
The New York Post
July 12, 2017

Near the end of its Tuesday story on Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with a Russian lawyer, The New York Times casually noted that the news “blunted whatever good feeling the president’s team had after his trip to Europe.”

Excuse me, but wasn’t blunting the president’s success the whole point of the latest installment of the Russia, Russia, Russia story?

Isn’t that why the leakers leaked when they did, and why the Times splashed the story on its front page day after day?

Excuse the cynicism, but there is a relentless pattern, and we don’t need a crystal ball to see the future. It looks like the past and the present. No better, no worse, just more of the same.

A year from now, Donald Trump still will be president and the media and the permanent bureaucracy still will be hounding him in a ruthless bid to drive him from office.

In responding to the attacks, Trump and his team will make numerous mistakes, none fatal, but the accumulation will take a toll on his presidency.

Drip, drip, drip goes the optimism.

That’s what we’re witnessing now, with another round of toxic mud masquerading as bombshell news overshadowing all other issues, from North Korea to tax reform.

I say masquerading because, for all the intrigue about the June 2016 meeting in Trump Tower, and for all the hyperventilating by Maxine Waters Democrats that this was the “gotcha” moment, the end result was the same: more smoke, yet still no fire.

The Russian lawyer, despite an e-mail introduction from a music promoter that sounded like it came from a Nigerian prince with millions to share, had no dirt on Hillary Clinton to share, government-sponsored or otherwise, and Trump Jr. quickly ended a meeting he never should have accepted.

For the media and Dems, it doesn’t matter that nothing happened. Any fact that supports the narrative that Trump is an illegitimate president is fit to print, while facts that don’t fit the narrative fall to the cutting-room floor.

On Google, collusion is defined as “secret or illegal cooperation or conspiracy, especially in order to cheat or deceive others.”

In the case of Trump, collusion is anything the media and Dems say it is. The goal posts are movable.

It’s not news when presidential candidates tap foreign sources for opposition research — except when Trump does it. Then it’s impeachable collusion.

Actually, this was a mere willingness to accept dirt on Clinton. Since no dirt was forthcoming, the whole Trump family is guilty of attempted collusion, or something.

Almost as amazing as Trump’s victory last November is the fact that so little has changed in the public discourse since then. America has reached a stalemate — emphasis on stale.

Count me as surprised. I assumed the obstruction and resistance would play itself out, and the nation could get back to some semblance of a fractious routine. While the anti-Trump demonstrations have petered out, the refusal to accept him as the president by about half the country is still strong, and there is absolutely no sign that bipartisanship is about to break out in Washington.

Unfortunately, the White House’s aversion to learning new crisis skills is also stubbornly strong.

The e-mails Trump Jr. released yesterday should have been released at the start instead of waiting for members of Congress to also demand them. The result is an emboldened opposition and precious time wasted in a serialized melodrama over a single meeting.

By now, the president, and even his family, should know they can never count on getting a fair shake from the White House press corps. They face a rabid hostility, and everything they say and do is seen through the darkest possible lens.

It’s not going to change, so Trump must. His White House leaks too much and by every indication, nobody is in charge.

It’s up to the president to fix the ship of state. Otherwise, the fate of his presidency will be decided by his opponents.

Drip, drip, drip.

As part of that repair effort, he must finally keep his Twitter focused on important public business, not private feuds. He did the right thing Monday and got immediate results.

With the Senate unable to pass an ObamaCare-replacement bill and the month-long August recess fast approaching, Trump tweeted, “I cannot imagine that Congress would dare to leave Washington without a beautiful new health-care bill fully approved and ready to go!”

Tuesday, in the midst of the Russia smoke bomb, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell postponed the August recess by two weeks to work on ObamaCare.

Depending on what the Senate does, the decision could turn out to be the most important news of the day. Or even of the year.


Article Link To The NY Post: