Lindsey Graham and Chuck Grassley sure sounded today like they’re being blackmailed

For reasons only known for certain to them, Republican Senators Lindsey Graham and Chuck Grassley have fully forsaken their own views on Donald Trump and the Trump-Russia investigation, in favor of oafishly cheerleading Trump’s every move and committing crimes to try to protect him from that scandal. Now that the rug has been pulled out from under the two men, they can no longer even get their story straight.

Graham and Grassley have spent the past week illegally trying to get criminal charges brought against former MI6 agent Christopher Steele, a man they know to be innocent, simply as punishment for Steele’s research into Trump’s Russia scandal. Their Democratic counterpart on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Dianne Feinstein, unilaterally released transcripts today which give significant credence to Steele’s dossier and the company that hired him to craft it. This move clearly caught Graham and Grassley off guard, and let’s just say that their responses didn’t mesh with each other.

Chuck Grassley seemed befuddled by the news, though in fairness, he always seemed befuddled. He resentfully whined about what Feinstein had done, and he incredibly accused her of trying to undermine the committee’s Trump-Russia investigation. Lindsey Graham seemed even more befuddled, and he ended up muttering something about how it was good that the truth was out there. Until this moment, Graham and Grassley had been in lockstep with their Trump-Russia malarkey for the past week. So what happened?

This serves to lend further credence to the theory that Graham and Grassley are somehow being blackmailed into taking these uncharacteristic, buffoonish, and illegal measures in the name of protecting Donald Trump and Russia. If so, they’ve both been taking orders on what to say and do, and this surprise from Feinstein left them unsure of how their blackmailer would even want them to respond. We’re continuing to look into Lindsey Graham’s hacked emails, and Chuck Grassley’s bizarre breakfast with a Russian member of Parliament, for possible answers.

Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report