Up until a week ago, it had been widely reported that Donald Trump’s handlers were keeping him in a protective bubble so he wouldn’t go fully off the deep end. They told him that Special Counsel Robert Mueller wasn’t investigating him personally, and that the entire Trump-Russia probe would be over soon. But now that Michael Flynn has decided to cut a deal, Trump has finally figured out that he’s a goner – and he’s given that away by what he’s suddenly dredging up.
Okay, so it’s possible that Donald Trump really is too far gone to have any idea what’s going on, and it’s his advisers doing the dredging. But in the five days since Flynn revealed he’s selling Trump out, take a look at what Trump is suddenly focusing on. He’s suddenly pushing Hillary Clinton’s emails for the first time in a month. More tellingly, he’s suddenly pushing President Obama’s birth certificate for the first time in more than a year. There’s a reason why.
Trump originally got a lot of mileage out of these fake scandals, before he gradually backed away from them because they were starting to lose their effectiveness. He’s reverting to them now because, well, it’s all he’s got. It takes a lot of time, patience and repetition to get a fake scandal about your opponent to stick in the minds of the general public. It took Trump years to get the birth certificate nonsense to stick. It took the Republican Party years to get the email nonsense to take hold.
Now that Donald Trump’s back is against the wall, he can’t simply start manufacturing new phony scandals; he no longer has that kind of time and he knows it. He’s reverting back to his original phony controversies, as worn out as they may be, because it’s all he has left to dredge up on short notice. It’s a sign that Trump has finally figured out he’s a goner, and that it’s going to happen sooner than later.
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Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report