The media has been giving a lot of attention this past week to the probe that U.S. Attorney John Durham has been running into the origins of the Trump-Russia probe, at the instruction of Attorney General Bill Barr. This has led social media pundits to make doomsday predictions that the probe will bring false charges against Trump’s adversaries, which will in turn allow Trump to magically win reelection in 2020. Here’s the thing: we’ve heard this narrative before, and it always ends the same way.
To be clear, the investigation into the origins of the Trump-Russia probe is a freak show. Barr has tasked Durham with presuming that Donald Trump’s favorite phony conspiracy theories about his Russia scandal are true, and finding a way to “prove” that they’re true. It’s a grotesque violation of the sanctity of the DOJ, and it’s felony obstruction of justice on Trump’s part. It’s also probably going absolutely nowhere.
Last month the Trump regime leaked that it had recommended an indictment against former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, leading a lot of people to believe that McCabe had in fact been indicted. But after McCabe himself took legal action to force the Trump regime to put up or shut up, it’s become fairly clear that there is no indictment; Trump’s people simply leaked the phony story about an indictment in the hope of cheering Trump up.
Earlier this month the Trump regime leaked that it was ramping up a massive investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails that would take down a whole lot of people. This week the results were announced, and it turned out to be a whole lot of nothing. Trump nonetheless claimed that the results of the email probe were vindication for him, because his deranged mind can spin anything in his favor.
But that’s the point: Trump’s people don’t actually have to do these things for real in order to make him happy. They just have to pretend they’re doing something constructive to further his conspiracy theories and revenge fantasies, and it’s enough to keep him sated. So when it comes to this investigation into the Trump-Russia investigation, the whole thing is a travesty and a sham. But as tends to be the case with these things, it’s probably just smoke and mirrors that won’t go anywhere. Be vigilant about these antics, but don’t let it paralyze you with fear. Trump and his people don’t have a magic wand.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report