Sooner or later the Trump-Russia investigation is going to get around to focusing on Mike Pence’s multiple attempts at obstructing justice, if it hasn’t already. Pence seems to know it, too, because his representatives keep telling the media every chance they get that he’s willing to be interviewed by Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Now Pence is making another move which at least partially gives away the game he’s playing.
Just two days ago, NBC News reported that Mike Pence was willing to speak with Mueller (link). This isn’t surprising, because Pence’s people keep feeding this sentiment to the media. He couldn’t be more obvious about it if he took out a billboard outside Mueller’s headquarters. Yet now, according to the Wall Street Journal (link), Pence says that he will not speak to Congress about his role in the scandal. So what’s he really up to?
Most of the Trump-Russia players have done it the opposite way. There’s a reason why Donald Trump Jr and other witnesses have been willing to get grilled about the scandal by congressional committees, while trying to dodge Mueller. These congressional investigations are not criminal investigations. While it’s a crime to lie to Congress, the Republican-dominated committees have yet to punish any of Trump’s people for lying to them or misleading them. In fact the only legal action has been taken against Christopher Steele, an innocent who was trying to investigate Trump. These committee investigations are that much of a Trump-slanted freak show.
So why would Mike Pence refuse to testify before a Republican-dominated congressional committee where he faces no real legal consequences, even while all but begging Special Counsel Robert Mueller to interview him as part of a criminal investigation where four people have already been arrested? The only explanation that comes to mind is that Pence wants to cut a plea deal with Mueller while he still can, and that he doesn’t want to taint his prospects by telling what he knows to Congress in the meantime.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report