Special Counsel Robert Mueller began the week by arresting two Donald Trump campaign advisers, and revealing that he’d already obtained a guilty plea from a third Trump campaign adviser he’d secretly arrested this summer. Then he suddenly stopped arresting people, even though it’s believed he has additional sealed indictments in hand. Now his strategy is playing out precisely how he was hoping it would.
Now that George Papadopoulos has fingered Trump campaign official Sam Clovis as one of the people who knew about his election plot with the Russians, suddenly Clovis testified before a grand jury this week. Clovis didn’t bother to tell the Trump team that he was testifying, suggesting he’s flipped on them as well. On Thursday, Trump adviser Carter Page testified that he met with Russian government officials in Moscow during the election, and that he notified unnamed Trump campaign officials about it. If this sounds like they’re all turning on each other, now comes inside word that it’s indeed “every man for himself.”
That’s a direct quote to CBS News from one of the unnamed Trump campaign advisers who is being investigated by Robert Mueller (link). In other words, the ship is sinking and everyone is trying to be the first to get off. What’s remarkable is that best anyone can tell, the two advisers arrested on Monday – Paul Manafort and Rick Gates – haven’t done anything to cooperate with the Mueller investigation since they were placed under house arrest.
Instead it’s the other Trump-Russia players, the ones who haven’t yet been arrested but fear they could be next, who are now scrambling to cooperate with the investigation. Of course cooperating with the investigation means selling each other out. There are only a limited number of favorable deals to be had. The race is now on to see which of Trump’s people can throw each other overboard.
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Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report