Here’s the thing about Mike Pence. He thought he could keep his head down most of the time, periodically pop up and kiss Donald Trump’s butt, and stay just far enough away from Trump’s criminal scandals to eventually inherit the presidency after Trump’s ouster. The trouble is that would have required Pence keeping his hands clean – and it turns out Pence got his hands way, way dirty.
When Special Counsel Robert Mueller released his lengthy but mostly redacted sentencing memo for Michael Flynn on Tuesday night, he made a point of not redacting the fact that the Trump transition team was in on Flynn’s illegal dealings with Russia. The head of the transition team, of course, was Mike Pence. Quite awhile back we learned that Mueller had done an end-around to get his hands on all of the transition team’s emails, so he knows what went down – and he’s got Flynn’s testimony on top of it. But it gets worse.
We all saw Mike Pence go on national television and insist that Michael Flynn was clean as a whistle. Then we found out that before Pence opened his mouth, Congressman Elijah Cummings had already notified Pence in writing that Flynn was dirty on Turkey. Now we know that Pence also knew Flynn was dirty on Russia at the time he vouched for him. Pence also lied about Michael Flynn Jr having been on the transition team at all.
Whatever Michael Flynn was doing, and we know by now that it was extraordinarily criminal in nature, Mike Pence was desperate to cover up every inch of it. No one does that unless they’re in on those crimes. Flynn has given everything about Pence to Robert Mueller, which means that – simply put – Pence is screwed.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report