As per normal, Trump, with a giant assist from his two legged Preparation H tube, Devin Nunes, has once again fornicated the canine. And like a degenerate gambler, who is dead sure the the next $100 will win him the progressive jackpot, he can’t resist throwing good money after bad.
Spygate was supposed to be Trump’s “magic bullet” to finally exile the Mueller investigation to Alpha Centauri. It was also a scam. The whole intention of labeling a trusted FBI informant a “spy,” and then having his chestnut nosed toady Nunes demand the info from the FBI, was not to learn anything. If Trump was a conspirator, anything Clovis, Papadopoulos, and Page could tell the informant was stuff that they should have already pushed up the chain of command. And, if Mueller cold confirm the information independently, Trump’s knowledge of it wouldn’t help him to counter it. No, the whole push for the briefing was for a more diabolical purpose.
The whole reason for the charade was to force a confrontation. Having Nunes subpoena Rosenstein for the information, backed up by righteous howling from Trump, Giuliani, Hannity, and the rest of the hyena’s was to force Rosenstein to draw a line in the sand. Trump was counting on Rosenstein refusing to give the information to Nunes and the committee, and defying the subpoena if necessary. This defiance would give Trump the excuse to fire Rosenstein, and maybe even take that uppity little FBI twerp Christopher Wray with him. Then Trump could install somebody who knew how to take orders, and either end the investigation, or hamstring it to the point of futility. But that cowardly, spineless little wimp Rosenstein caved, and gave the briefings.
We already know that the briefings were a total bust for Trump and Nunes. We know this because, while Democratic congressman Adam Schiff rushed to a microphone to crow that nothing in the briefing even hinted at any impropriety, all we heard from Nunes and Gowdy was “cheep-cheep-cheep.” Mitch McConnell even stepped in front of a microphone and stated that the briefing only solidified his determination that Mueller be allowed to complete his investigation unimpeded. The excuse for firing Rosenstein for insubordination has evaporated.
Giuliani’s latest extortion demand of a White House briefing on the information the gang of eight received is a desperate, last ditch attempt to force another confrontation with Rosenstein. Here’s why. If Nunes had actually received any new, actionable intelligence from the briefing, he would have simply pulled another “midnight ride” to the White House, hand delivered it, and stood around with his mouth open, waiting for a puppy biscuit. If Nunes gave the information to Trump and Giuliani, there would be no reason to demand the briefing. And since Nunes had no information to give Trump, Giuliani knows that an actual briefing would be a total waste of time. His demand is one last gasp to force a confrontation with Rosenstein, so Trump can fire him for insubordination.
Except, it won’t work. When Nunes demanded the information, at least he could wrap himself in a cloak of constitutional authority. He was properly demanding the information on behalf of his committee in executing their mandatory charge of congressional oversight. Trump has no such constitutional charge of oversight. Any direct order from Trump for the briefing would likely end up constituting Mueller’s fifth charge of obstruction of justice. And firing Rosenstein for his refusal to comply would likely be his Waterloo. McConnell gave Trump an explicit warning with his reiteration that Mueller be allowed to complete his investigation without intrusion. Trump firing Rosenstein would likely bring a strong pushback from McConnell, and moderate Republicans, possibly even bipartisan legislation to protect Mueller. But, a dog’s gotta howl, right?
It’s really that simple. The demand for congressional briefings was nothing more than a cheap power play to force a standoff that would allow Trump to fire Rosenstein, and possibly Wray. Trump’s miscalculation was in not realizing that Rosenstein could take this hit and accede, already knowing that the FBI and DOJ had acted properly, and that there was no critical information that Nunes and Trump would receive. The only booby prize Trump can claim would be if Rosenstein caves and gives Giuliani and Flood a briefing. Not that they would get any actual information, but the spectacle would serve to further weaken the independence of the FBI and the DOJ. But if Rosenstein stands firm and refuses, Trump will have no choice but to back down, and suffer the indignity of looking weak. Guess that progressive jackpot is going to go unclaimed after all.