Donald Trump is getting desperate, but he thinks he may have found a way out of the Special Counsel Robert Mueller Russia investigation. Republicans, such as Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), have been sucking up to the president. Even worse, they have moved to entirely derail the investigation. The president wants to cash in on that.
In another early morning tweet, Trump calls the Russia investigation a “Witch Hunt:”
‘The single greatest Witch Hunt in American history continues. There was no collusion, everybody including the Dems knows there was no collusion, & yet on and on it goes.’
Trump wants the Republicans to take over what he called a “waste of time.” Then, he went on to hammer ranking Senate Judicial Committee member, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), for releasing the testimony of the co-founder the firm that compiled the Trump-Russia dossier.
She did so after urging the chair, Grassley, to release it. According to USA Today, she wanted people to know the dossier was not the fiction that the Republicans claimed:
‘The American people deserve the opportunity. The innuendo and misinformation circulating about the transcript are part of a deeply troubling effort to undermine the investigation into potential collusion and obstruction of justice. The only way to set the record straight is to make the transcript public.’
Trump tweeted his dissatisfaction about Feinstein:
‘The fact that Sneaky Dianne Feinstein, who has on numerous occasions stated that collusion between Trump/Russia has not been found, would release testimony in such an underhanded and possibly illegal way, totally without authorization, is a disgrace. Must have tough Primary!’
Co-founder of Fusion GPS, Glenn Simpson, also wanted his testimony released, because the Republicans had been selectively releasing parts of it to fit their agenda and make the company look bad. He testified 10 hours last summer, then again in early October.
Grassley and Graham requested a criminal referral to the Department of Justice (DOJ) about Christopher Steele, who compiled the Trump-Russia dossier for Fusion. They went rogue, without notifying any of the Democrats on the committee.
In Simpson’s testimony, he said the British spy and Russian expert, Steele, was so worried that Russia might try to blackmail Trump, he went to the FBI with the dossier. Originally, a conservative organization funded Fusion for background (oppositional) information about Trump for other Republican contenders.
When Steele went to a top FBI official, a Hillary Clinton campaign attorney had purchased the oppositional material. The official told him that they already had started an investigation into the matter based upon intelligence from another source. Former Trump campaign adviser, George Papadopoulos, had leaked information about the Russians stealing Clinton’s emails to an Australian diplomat. Like Steele, the Australian source was concerned about the Russian influence.
Papadopoulos was charged with lying to the FBI, which is a felony. As a result, he worked out an arrangement with Mueller to garner information about the Trump organization, as part of a plea deal.
At this point, it is impossible to tell whether Trump wanted Mueller’s Russian investigation quashed, because he was collaborating with them or for another reason. The president has been especially sensitive about Clinton winning the popular vote in the 2016 presidential election, and he may feel that any Russian influence takes away from his win.
Featured Image via Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla.