So just how bad is it for Donald Trump today? After all, he’s been caught plotting with Russian election meddlers during the 2016 election to build Trump Tower Moscow. Then again, up to now, Trump has managed to survive one ugly shocking revelation and criminal scandal after another. So is he finally toast? Let’s check in someone who would know.
How about we ask Neal Katyal, the former Acting Solicitor General of the United States, who spent time working in the uppermost rungs of the Department of Justice, and has some familiarity with the criminal and political implications here. Katyal appeared on Hardball with Chris Matthews this evening and didn’t mince words. He said that today will go down as the “beginning of the end of the Trump presidency.” We’re inclined to agree. What happens next?
We think that depends on how Donald Trump wants to go down. He can resign right now, in the hope that the nation will simply drop the whole thing and move on out of relief, though that’s not his pattern. Based on what Trump usually does once he realizes he’s going to lose (see his six bankruptcies), he may try to negotiate his exit in exchange for as much criminal leniency as possible. How much would Robert Mueller, and for that matter America, be willing to give this guy just to get him to go away?
Then there’s the scenario in which Donald Trump decides to drag this out as long as possible, because he doesn’t see any way out, or because his deranged mind wants to go down in flames. In such case House Democrats would have to bring impeachment charges, and use the impeachment process to figuratively beat him up so badly, there would be nothing left of his presidency for him to cling to, and he’d have to walk away. In any case, Trump is indeed at the beginning of his end.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report