Because Donald Trump operates in a semi-coherent haze of narcissistic self delusion, and his condition has been growing worse as his criminal scandals have closed in on him, it’s often been difficult to figure out the extent to which he understands how much trouble he’s in. However, today he left no doubt about it. In the middle of a rant that was otherwise largely about James Comey, a frazzled Trump let slip that even he knows what’s coming next.
We could talk about how Trump is now reduced to quickly recycling nicknames and insults, and he can’t even seem to make up his mind whether James Comey is a “slimeball” or “slime ball.” But the histrionic ranting about Comey is to be expected. After all, Comey is releasing a book that provides a devastating expose into Trump’s failed and criminal presidency, as well as exposing Trump’s obsession with the Pee Pee Tape. Instead, it was a tweet about an entirely different topic that gave away Trump’s true state of mind.
Here’s what Trump slipped in during his Comey rant: “Attorney Client privilege is now a thing of the past. I have many (too many!) lawyers and they are probably wondering when their offices, and even homes, are going to be raided with everything, including their phones and computers, taken. All lawyers are deflated and concerned!” And there it is, the rare moment of nearly coherent truth from Donald Trump. The raid against Michael Cohen this week means he’s toast. He gets it. He’s hosed.
Donald Trump doesn’t understand attorney-client privilege, or how search warrants are signed off on by judges based on existing evidence. But he does instinctively get that if the legal system can launch a raid against Trump’s “attorney” Cohen, they can get to him in any way they want, because they already have enough evidence to ensure they can keep legally justifying their next moves. By the way, Trump is a classic projectionist. So when he says his remaining lawyers are “deflated and concerned,” he’s really talking about himself.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report