Even as Donald Trump’s handpicked Attorney General William Barr tries to fend off the inevitable release of the full Mueller report, Trump’s inner circle has apparently convinced him that this is all over, and Trump has somehow “won.” We know this because Trump just stood in front of the cameras and flatly declared “I won” when it comes to the Mueller probe. This guy is about to get hit with a harsh dose of reality.
Barr says he’s less than a week away from releasing a redacted version of the Mueller report. It’ll be a whitewashed joke, of course, with the very ugliest of Trump’s obstruction and collusion efforts conveniently blacked out for no reason other than that Trump wants it that way. But even Barr will have to allow some of the dirt on Trump to be released, if only in the name of trying to fend off having to release the worst of it.
In fact, the less Barr releases next week, the more emphatically Mueller’s team will begin leaking what’s really in the report. They can’t legally leak the classified parts, but they can leak just enough about the report to leave the American public with no doubt that Trump is lying when he claims Mueller found “no collusion” and “no obstruction,” and that Barr is illegally covering it up. Barr is holding his ground for now, but it’s slipping away from him, and it’s only going to continue to slip further.
So Donald Trump can gloat all he wants this week about how he “won” the Mueller probe. What is that supposed to mean anyway? This isn’t a game. Trump and his people conspired with the Russians to try to alter the outcome of the election in his favor, which means he’s not the “president” of anything. He’s a thug who’s illegally occupying the office of president, he’s abusing the power of the presidency to try to shield himself from his crimes, and he’s gloating about it like the pond scum that he is. But things are about to get rather bad for him next week – and they’ll only get worse for him from there.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report