This afternoon we learned that the Senate Intelligence Committee, controlled by Republican Chairman Richard Burr, has subpoenaed Donald Trump Jr to come in and testify about earlier false testimony he gave about the Trump-Russia scandal to the Lindsey Graham-controlled Senate Judiciary Committee. Now the whole thing is quickly going south on the Republican side.
Our initial interpretation of the subpoena was that Richard Burr isn’t trying to help Donald Trump Jr cover his tracks, and is trying to cover his own backside after the Mueller report revealed that Burr had initially tried to help Trump dodge the investigation in early 2017. Now it turns out Trump Jr doesn’t think Burr is on his side either. NBC News is reporting that Junior is going to fight the subpoena. And according to the Wall Street Journal, Junior is lashing out at Burr.
Someone close to Trump Jr just told the WSJ that Junior sees the subpoena as a “PR stunt” by “so-called Republican” Richard Burr, accusing Burr of being too “cowardly” to stand up to the Democrats on his own committee. The Republicans have the majority on the Senate Intelligence Committee, so it’s not as if the Democrats have the votes to officially force Burr to do anything. Keep in mind that the “person close” to Trump Jr wouldn’t be making these remarks to the WSJ unless they were coming from Trump Jr himself.
We’ll see where this heads next. But it’s already erupted into a situation where Donald Trump Jr is lashing out at the Republican Chairman of the Senate Intel Committee, accusing him of not being a real Republican. On a day where Team Trump is trying to push the notion that the Democrats are the only ones interested in investigating Donald Trump’s scandals, Richard Burr just blew that up entirely. Now that Burr is targeting Donald Trump Jr, it can’t be long before Donald Trump starts attacking Burr on Twitter. That would go poorly for Trump, at a time when he desperately needs the GOP Senate to protect him.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report