Two days after Robert Mueller arrested a pair of Donald Trump’s campaign advisers and announced a guilty plea from a third campaign adviser, Mueller is embarking on a whole new way to screw with Trump – and this time it’s intensely personal. Maybe it’s just happenstance that Mueller’s next move is going to leave Trump squirming in a no-win situation, or maybe Mueller is just that much of a stone cold player. Either way, this is flat out sinister.
Mueller recently interviewed former White House senior advisers Sean Spicer and Reince Priebus about the meeting in which Donald Trump and his team plotted how to cover up the real reason for Donald Trump Jr’s Russia meeting. Trump couldn’t care less about Spicer and Priebus, and he probably thinks they’re too milquetoast to have done much damage to him anyway (for the record, he’s wrong about this). But now Mueller is just a few days away from interviewing Hope Hicks about her role in that same meeting. For Trump, this a real problem.
No one knows precisely what Hope Hicks does in Trump’s dysfunctional White House, where almost no one’s actual job duties line up with their official title. Hicks has held various job titles, but none of those jobs have involved interacting with the public. We do know this, however: according to widespread reporting, Hicks is Trump’s closest and most trusted adviser. Everyone has their pet theory on why, and it doesn’t really matter, except that he clearly considers her to be very important to him. No matter how she handles her testimony, he can’t win.
If Hope Hicks gives up Donald Trump on obstruction of justice to Robert Mueller, then Trump is screwed from a criminal standpoint. If Hicks is uncooperative during her testimony, she’ll be indicted for conspiracy to obstruct, and she’ll be arrested – leaving Trump without the adviser he likes and cares about the most. For Trump, this is an intensely personal no-win situation, and that fact surely isn’t lost on Mueller.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report