Over the weekend it was revealed that Ivanka Trump believes her father Donald Trump is self destructing. That became more clear than ever today when he essentially pre-fired White House Counsel Don McGahn by announcing on Twitter that McGahn would be departing at the end of the current Supreme Court nomination fight, which was news to McGahn. Now it turns out it was Ivanka who pushed her father over the edge.
Here’s the relevant quote from Vanity Fair a few days ago: “Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump are unsettled that Trump is so gleefully acting on his most self-destructive impulses as his legal peril grows. According to a source, Jared and Ivanka told Trump that stripping security clearances from former intelligence officials would backfire, but Trump ignored them.” Here is today’s relevant quote from the New York Times: “[Ivanka] complained bitterly to her father about The Times report this month, which detailed how some in the White House were unaware of the extent of Mr. McGahn’s cooperation with Mr. Mueller.” So how do these two pieces fit together?
Here’s the thing. Donald Trump hired Don McGahn with the expectation that McGahn would be willing to risk getting into legal trouble in order to protect Trump from Robert Mueller. Not only did that turn out not to be the case, it’s been clear since late last year. From a self preservation standpoint, he should have either had the sense not to hire McGahn to begin with, or he should have fired him a very long time ago. But now that he’s kept McGahn around this long, forcing him out in humiliating fashion is just stupid. It’ll only motivate McGahn to become even more cooperative with Mueller, because now McGahn has no job left to protect.
So now we have a chain of events in which Ivanka Trump runs to the media and insists that Donald Trump is acting in self destructive fashion, and then immediately thereafter, she talks him into making one of his most self destructive moves yet. Either Ivanka is incredibly stupid, or she’s purposely trying to destroy her father. Take your pick.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report