We all know some non-political types who are as leery of Donald Trump as we are, but who honestly could not understand why millions of women and men took to the streets to stand against Trump in the Women’s March and subsequent protests. They’ve asked what the march accomplished, and how it was supposed to stop Trump’s agenda. But it’s now fairly easy to draw a straight line from the Women’s March all the way to Michael Flynn’s resignation, and the Russia scandal that’s about to envelop Trump.
The Trump White House has known privately for weeks (source: CNN) that Flynn had been busted by the U.S. intelligence community for illegally colluding with the Russian ambassador. But he wasn’t forced out of the administration until the intel community leaked the report to major newspapers on Friday. These are career intel employees who made the difficult and brave decision to leak info that could get them fired or charged with a crime.
Those intel community employees had to feel comfortable that the leaks would sufficiently resonate with the American public so as to force change, and that the risk would be worth it. And how do you think these leakers got the message that Americans truly want Trump taken down? They’ve spent the past three weeks seeing nonstop protests against Trump’s every outrageous move. Message received.
The Women’s March and the sustained protests that have since followed are surely what gave the intel community the courage to leak the damaging intel on Flynn to the media. After all, it was four days of massive public pressure and controversy that forced Flynn to resign, not the mere fact that his guilt was leaked. If Americans had shrugged off the story, Flynn would still be on the job. But now Flynn is out, and he’s in a position to flip and take Trump down with him.
The intel community can’t necessarily get the truth out about Donald Trump through official government channels, because Trump is its boss. But if you keep marching in the streets, it will continue to send a clear signal that if these kinds of damaging details continue to be leaked, the public will make a big enough deal about it that the Trump administration will continue caving in on itself. Flynn is gone and Trump is now scrambling over the Russia scandal as a direct result of what the Women’s March put in motion.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report