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Morning Briefing: Trump Tweets, Mike Pence Now Ensnared In Michael Flynn Scandal

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | May 18, 2017 |

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | May 18, 2017 |

Donald Trump has finally broken his Twitter silence to … whine. He really needs to work on how to spell counsel.

It’s telling that he’s calling out supposed “illegal acts,” as if saying, “Yes, we committed illegal acts, but so did Obama and they didn’t get a special counsel. WaaaaaaAAAAaaah.”

Oh shut the fuck up Donny.

It’s worth remembering in the midst of all this, that Trump is still threatening to leave NATO.

As far as White House gossip goes, Kimberly Guilfoyle is accusing Sean Spicer of putting out a hit piece on her, after she reportedly interviewed for his job.

Why would Guilfoyle even want that job at this point?

But here’s what we’re here to talk about this morning: Michael Flynn.

We have learned since last night a few more things, namely that Flynn and other Trump campaign officials were in contact with Russians at least 18 times during the campaign, including six conversations between Flynn and Sergei Kislyak.

Conversations between Flynn and Kislyak accelerated after the Nov. 8 vote as the two discussed establishing a back channel for communication between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin that could bypass the U.S. national security bureaucracy, which both sides considered hostile to improved relations, four current U.S. officials said.

This, of course, contradicts Mike Pence’s own statements that the campaign had no contact with Russia. Is Pence so out of the loop that he wouldn’t have known about repeated contacts with the Russians? Or is that evil bastard lying, too?

Meanwhile, we’re also learning that Michael Flynn asked Obama’s National Security Adviser Susan Rice to hold off on a planned military operation, an operation the United States was keen to push ahead but that went against the wishes of Turkey. Flynn had been paid $500,000 to represent the interests of Turkey.

The decision came 10 days before Donald Trump had been sworn in as president, in a conversation with President Barack Obama’s national security adviser, Susan Rice, who had explained the Pentagon’s plan to retake the Islamic State’s de facto capital of Raqqa with Syrian Kurdish forces whom the Pentagon considered the U.S.’s most effective military partners. Obama’s national security team had decided to ask for Trump’s sign-off, since the plan would all but certainly be executed after Trump had become president.

Flynn didn’t hesitate. According to timelines distributed by members of Congress in the weeks since, Flynn told Rice to hold off, a move that would delay the military operation for months.

That could be treason.

Meanwhile, the Times is reporting that Flynn told the Trump transition team weeks before the inauguration that he was under investigation for his involvement with Turkey. Mike Pence was the head of the Trump transition team, so Mike Pence should have known about Flynn, which means that Pence has been lying all along, too.

If Flynn goes to prison, what will happen to “Mother”?!

The news is so bleak and coming so fast that White House staffers are forming impromptu support groups to deal with their “grief.”

From WashPo:

Some White House staffers have turned to impeachment gallows humor. Other mid-level aides have started contacting consultants, shopping their résumés. And at least one senior staffer has begun privately talking to friends about what a post-White House job would look like, according to two people close the staffer.

And it’s not just Trump’s team, either. It’s Pence’s team, as well.

In other words, when the special prosecutor is done here — or perhaps, even earlier — we may be looking at President Paul Ryan (*shudders*), and that might explain why Ryan — who loathed Donald Trump during the campaign — is now defending Trump. He wants to put a good face on it; he doesn’t want to look like he’s angling for the Presidency, but secretly, he knows that when the dust settles here, Paul Ryan might be sitting in the Oval Office.

Unless, of course, he knew that Trump was in bed with the Russians all along and decided to keep that a secret, or, you know, blew it off as a “joke.”

In that case, we’re looking at Orrin Hatch, who is super old, and if he dies, we’re looking at Rex “God Help Us All” Tillerson.

R.I.P. Chris Cornell | Roger Ailes, Former Fox News CEO, Dies

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.