July 17, 2017 5:36 pm -

Given the timing and intensity of Trump’s outbursts on Twitter, it’s a lead-pipe cinch to figure out what has been triggering them. Trump lashes out to varying degrees whenever news about the growing Russia scandal appear, but they are particularly unhinged when one particular facet of the scandal receives press.

It’s that one word: collusion.

Why does it trigger the Tweeter-in-Chief?

Our own sources in the media assure us that both broadcast news organizations and the major papers in NYC and DC are in the process of preparing more than one bombshell story related to last week’s revelations concerning Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with Russian agents at Trump Tower.

And over the weekend, several individuals weighed in on the growing collusion scandal.

Rep. Adam Schiff is one of Capitol Hill’s most high-profile Democrats, and one gets the feeling that as a member of the House Intelligence Committee, he knows a lot more than he is revealing:

Schiff told ABC News [on Sunday] that Donald Trump Jr.’s words depicting his June meeting with the Russians painted the clearest picture yet of the Trump campaign’s willingness to collude with a hostile foreign government like Russia.

Earlier in the show, guest host Jonathan Karl interviewed Trump attorney Jay

Karl asked, “Is there any evidence whatsoever tying this meeting or that Russian lawyer to the centerpiece of this Russian influence campaign, which was the hack of the DNC, the hack of the Clinton campaign emails? Is there anything whatsoever tying this meeting to that activity by the Russians?”

Schiff replied, “Well, you know, it is certainly tied in the sense this is about as clear of evidence you could find of intent by the campaign to collude with the Russians, to get useful information from the Russians.”

He continued, “More than that, though, a willingness not only to accept, but to indicate to Russia what the best timing was. Of course, Don Jr. says in the emails late summer. And what do we know about late summer? That’s when the Russians start dumping this information.” and he made the case that what Trump Jr. said was the truth.

Rep Schiff responded, “Now, to believe that, though, we have to rely on two things. We have to rely on Don Jr.’s representation of what happened at that meeting, and we have already seen, many times we can’t rely on that, because of course he first said no such meeting ever happened.”

“So, we can’t accept anything Don Jr. says.”

Outside of Sean Hannity and a few Fox News cultists, that idea should hold true for most Americans. And Trump’s record low approval rating seems to indicate that.

Rep. Schiff painted a clear picture of what we’ve all seen during the run-up to the 2016 election.

Steve Longman, meanwhile, argues that the Russia collusion case is proven:

I believe, although cannot prove, that [Russian officials] had sent Manafort to Trump with a hard offer to refuse. Manafort would work on his delegate count for no pay. Michael Flynn was already compromised because he hadn’t notified the Pentagon that he was taking tens of thousands of dollars from the Kremlin to make appearances on the Russian Today (RT) network and badmouth the Obama administration. The Trump campaign was therefore compromised six ways to Sunday by the time the summer had begun.

There’s a much longer list of characters who might have compromised themselves. Carter Page was let go because his activities were too obvious. Trump’s lawyer, Michael Cohen, has all kinds of relationships with pro-Russian Ukrainians and may have had secret meetings with Russians in Eastern Europe. Michael Caputo actually worked for the Kremlin in the 1990s. Boris Epshteyn was born in Moscow and toes their line. There’s the whole Felix Sater element that no one should ever forget. Trump’s foul-mouthed lawyer Marc Kasowitz also has represented Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska and Sberbank, Russia’s largest state-owned bank.

I feel like I’m only scratching the surface here, because there are others who were only loosely affiliated with the campaign who were clearly in contact with the Russians seeking and receiving everything from Clinton’s private emails to hacked Democratic and state voter files.

The overall picture is clear. Russia wanted Trump to win and Trump wanted Russia’s help. The collusion was explicit, some of it is well-documented, and the defense is now that anybody would have done the same.

A Columbia University law professor predicts Trump will resign over the collusion scandal:

Philip Bobbitt describes the President’s resignation as a consequence of his family members being prosecuted as “the likeliest possibility.”

Emails released by Donald Trump Jr show that he met with a Kremlin-based lawyer last summer, along with Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort, the Republican campaign’s then chairman.

Trump Jr’s response to being offered compromising information about Hillary Clinton ahead of the November election was to write “if it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer”.

“Whatever [Trump’s] policy goals, it has long been clear that creating a dynasty — having destroyed the two reigning political dynasties in the last campaign — is his greatest objective,” Professor Bobbitt writes in the Evening Standard.

“Resignation, as remote as it seems right now, might well be a choice the President would make to save his children from prison, and himself from future prosecution.”

One former Justice Department lawyer went further; “People are going to jail.

In a Sunday interview with the American edition of the UK-based Independent, a prosecutor from Bill Clinton’s Department of Justice weighed in on the investigation into the Trump campaign’s collusion with Russia in the 2016 election. The matter-of-fact description of that case now fits. There is no longer any question that there was collusion. The only question at this point is who knew about it and when.

Harry Litman, who before he served in the DOJ was a law clerk for SCOTUS luminaries Thurgood Marshall and Anthony Kennedy is currently dividing his time between teaching law at UCLA and his private practice. He was confirmed by the Senate as US Attorney for Western Pennsylvania. This guy personally showed up in court for the cases his office took. I guess what I’m getting at with all these details you don’t really care about is that he knows the law. So it takes on a little more meaning when he says,

It’s a really serious investigation, and there are people that are going to go to jail. The whole atmosphere in the White House has to be paranoid.

Collusion. Keep that word in mind every time Trump lashes out.

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.