“I misspoke,” Trump said at a White House briefing Tuesday, a day after being snookered by Russian President Vladimir Putin, and now belatedly accepting the findings of his intelligence officials that Russia interfered in the 2016 election.
Well, for our part, Trump has been misspeaking ever since he began his presidential campaign. And his admission pales in comparison to the other concessions made to the Russian leader.
When he was asked if he believed the U.S. intelligence community and its conclusions or the denials of Putin, he sided with Putin, adding that Putin was “extremely strong and powerful in his denial” of any Russian meddling. In other words, he took the word of the KGB over the word of the CIA.
“I have confidence in both sides,” Trump answered a reporter, trying to split his decision, and it was hard not to recall his “both sides” comments after the melee in Charlottesville, Va., last August where a Neo-Nazi, white nationalist rally and attack injured many and led to the death of Heather Heyer.
So, Trump chose to stand next to Putin rather than standing up to him and challenging his lies and shenanigans. How this will play with his base that has stood unwaveringly by his side, deeming him a tough and forceful leader, may not be known until the dust settles on this presidential fiasco.
To the cries of impeachment, we can now add “treason,” according to a former CIA chief, who was deeply troubled that a sitting president had capitulated to a foe.
Trump’s desire to embrace Putin, to give him a platform and not even discuss Russia’s misdeeds, including its defense of Syria’s brutal leader and ongoing civil war, has baffled experts near and far, though some insist we follow the money.
And the issue of money was the first thing out of Trump’s mouth about the “success” he achieved in Helsinki, England and Brussels, all of which when carefully assessed were colossal flops.
On PBS Tuesday afternoons there’s a kids’ cartoon show called “Peg-Cat” and on a recent broadcast they did a marvelous job depicting how they would handle foreign affairs and American diplomacy. Trump would be wise to check it out as he apparently gives little regard to his own top advisers.
Maybe if we plumb his so-called “deep state” we will discover his motivations for this friendly outpouring and pampering of Putin, and maybe there’s more to the question posed by a reporter about compromising information possibly in the hands of Putin and Russian intelligence.
Whatever the case, we are thrilled to see that so many elected officials and former intelligence officers have cited Trump as “manifestly unfit” for office. Now, let’s make that manifestly connected to our declaration that to Make America Great Again—Trump Must Go!