Mike Pence’s chief of staff has a whole new problem
Last week the news surfaced that Mike Pence’s chief of staff Marc Short owns significant stock in multiple companies that were favored by the Trump regime during the coronavirus crisis. This was an ugly scandal, and it raised all kinds of questions about possible financial impropriety and corruption – but it fell out of the headlines quickly, as Mike Pence stories tend to do while Donald Trump is rampaging.
But now the scandal back, at least in a legal sense, if not necessarily in the headlines. Powerful legal watchdog CREW has filed a criminal complaint with the FBI against Marc Short, seeking a full investigation into which coronavirus crisis meetings he attended, and what influence he may have had over which companies Donald Trump ended up promoting during his press briefings, or giving favorable contracts to. Depending on the specifics, Short may or may not have committed a serious crime.
It’s far from clear if the FBI still has enough independence from Bill Barr to be able to get away with criminally investigating the activities of Mike Pence’s chief of staff within the White House. But even if not, the mere filing of the criminal complaint could set the stage for an FBI investigation after the election, provided Trump loses. The bottom line: this scandal isn’t going away for Short, whether it continues to get headlines or not.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report