Michael Flynn just signaled that he’s negotiating a deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, which will all but certainly seal the fate of Donald Trump. Flynn knows most or all of Trump’s secrets when it comes to Russia, and he’ll have to cough up every last one of those secrets as part of his plea deal. But Trump isn’t the only one who is suddenly seeing his political life flashing before him.
We still don’t know for sure why he did it, but Vice President Mike Pence has been covering for Michael Flynn for at least the past year. Congress notified Pence in November that Flynn was criminally on the take from the government of Turkey, yet Pence did nothing to prevent Flynn from being appointed National Security Adviser. Pence then went on national television and lied about knowing of Flynn’s foreign entanglements.
Was Mike Pence trying to protect himself because he was also a part of the Trump-Russia-Turkey conspiracy, or was Pence merely protecting Michael Flynn in order to keep his administration from falling apart? Now that Flynn is squealing, we’re about to find out the answer. Even if Pence wasn’t in on the original criminal conspiracy, he appears to have committed obstruction of justice by trying to cover it up after the fact. That alone will be enough to make it difficult for Pence to inherit the presidency once Trump is ousted. Even if Pence does manage to assume the office, his presidency will be instantly awash in scandal, and it’ll be solely defined by that scandal for as long as it lasts.
So even as most of the headlines right now are justifiably focused on how Michael Flynn’s deal will impact Donald Trump, let’s keep one eye on the details of Flynn’s confession – as it’ll seal Mike Pence’s fate as well.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report