In the last nine months or so, the world has listened to various members of Donald Trump’s inner circle vehemently deny that they had interactions of any kind with Russians during Election 2016. In fact, when news broke that Trump’s own namesake has become to latest to have reportedly met with a Russian operative, Trump claimed he didn’t know about the meeting.
There are many things that complicate Trump’s plea of ignorance. Tops on that list is the fact that several sources confirm that Trump’s egotistical personality lends itself to him being quite the overbearing micromanager. His need to feel a sense of power and control over those he should be leading in more effective ways, causes him to demand that they tell him their every move — no one does anything without Trump’s approval. These expectations are said to have been especially true while Trump was on the campaign trail.
However, despite the above, when news broke that Donald Trump’s own son joined the ranks of Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and close friend/former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, as having met with a Russian operative, Trump’s claim that he didn’t know, just sounded unbelievable to many. Trump Jr.’s meeting with a Russian attorney took place at Trump Tower. At the very least a Trump Sr., knew about it after the fact as security personnel or curious onlookers would’ve had to have reported something to him.
Simply put, it sounds like Donald Trump is just trying to avoid appearing culpable and that such has been the case all along. It also seems as if Trump isn’t alone in having pleaded ignorance and made claims that no one connected to him had contact with anyone in Russia. An interview with then Vice-President-Elect, Mike Pence has come back to haunt him.
In the Face the Nation segment, Pence was asked his reaction to news that the Senate Intelligence Committee had decided to investigate the Trump campaign’s possible connection to Russian interference in Election 2016. Pence responded:
‘Make no mistake about it, they’ll find what the publicly released intelligence report showed before is that Donald Trump won this election fair and square.’
When John Dickerson didn’t get a direct answer to his question, he pressed further:
‘Just to button-up one question – did any adviser or anybody in the Trump campaign have any contact with the Russians who were trying to meddle in the election?’
Dickerson’s question was very clear. He asked if “anybody” had “any contact. . .” Pence replied:
‘Of course not. I think to suggest that is to give credence to some of these bizarre rumors that have swirled around the candidacy.’
They’re not just “rumors,” though. What the world now knows is that what Pence dismissed as water cooler gossip, is fact. Manafort, Kushner, Trump Jr., and possibly others did in fact have contact with Russians attempting to meddle in the election. In fact, Trump Jr. admits that the Russian lawyer he met with claimed to have damning intelligence about Hillary Clinton; that’s the epitome of meddling and Pence’s January denial, is the epitome of lying.
Pence hired a lawyer in June to represent him in case charges ever came against him from the investigation into Russian collusion. Based on the interview he gave in January where he clearly lied, he probably should’ve had an attorney back then too.
Pence’s full interview may be seen below:
Featured Image screengrab via YouTube.