The calm before the storm

Thanksgiving Day has come and gone, and as most of us expected, nothing really happened. No indictments were made public. No doors were busted down during Thanksgiving dinner. No one named Trump was arrested. All we got today was even more circumstantial evidence that everyone on all sides expects things to happen very, very soon.

Donald Trump’s meltdown yesterday about “bedlam, chaos, injury and death” was jarring even by his standards, and suggested that he’s fully cracked under the excruciating pressure of what he fears is about to imminently happen to him, his presidency, and his family. Trump’s withering House GOP allies sent subpoenas yesterday to James Comey and Loretta Lynch, in what felt like an attempt at distracting everyone from what’s about to happen. So what is about to happen?

There is no getting around Robert Mueller’s recent request for a ten day delay in filing a status update in the Paul Manafort cooperation agreement. This strongly suggested that Mueller was expecting to arrest one or more people sold out by Manafort within that timeframe, which means by the end of this weekend. Throw in the similar request for a delay in the Maria Butina case, and it all points to this being a very busy weekend for Mueller and company – and a very scary weekend for everyone involved in the Trump-Russia scandal.

So who’s going to get popped? Paul Manafort was in the Trump Tower meeting with the Russians, along with Donald Trump Jr and Jared Kushner. Manafort also has a long and shady shared history with Roger Stone. It could be any of them. But at this late date it’s difficult to imagine Robert Mueller making a swing that big without busting a whole lot of people at once, to make sure it counts. The key here is that no one on Trump’s side knows what’s about to hit them, which seems to be how Mueller likes it.

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

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