According to a breaking news report on MSNBC, FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe is stepping down from the bureau. However, considering Trump has been badgering him for months, combined with the fact that McCabe has recently been hinted at retirement (which Trump also slammed him for on Twitter), this news really isn’t all that surprising.
Regardless, I’m sure it’s safe to say Trump is celebrating right now, thinking McCabe’s exit somehow yields more protection for himself in the Russia scandal (even though McCabe had nothing to do with the Russia investigation).
But, you see, House Intelligence and Judiciary committee member Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) told MSNBC that if McCabe was departing “for any reason other than personal, this is going to be a problem.” And it just may be. For Trump, that is.
While Trump’s allies within the Republican Congress and right-wing news outlets were so busy obsessing over the fact that McCabe’s wife is a Democratic politician, in a round-about way they managed to label him as a double-agent of sorts acting on behalf of Hillary in order to take Trump down in the Russia investigation.
And naturally, Trump took the bait and bought into the phony attacks on McCabe, even going so far as to asking McCabe how he voted in the 2016 campaign, attacking him on Twitter, and eventually demanding that FBI Director Christopher Wray fire him (Wray refused and threatened to resign)
Nevertheless, the point is this…Donald Trump was clearly bothered by McCabe and badgered him into quitting, which is a big strategic mistake.
Bill Palmer points out: “Sure enough, he got his wish today. But he wasn’t supposed to get rid of McCabe. He was supposed to keep him around, so his allies could keep falsely pinning every phony conspiracy theory on him. Now that McCabe is gone, the plan falls apart. So Trump blew it strategically. Not only that, McCabe had nothing to do with the Russia investigation. Trump put all this effort into forcing out a guy who couldn’t hurt him even if he wanted to. Meanwhile, now that Trump thinks he’s won, he’ll likely relax and take his eye off the people who are actually investigating him.”
Bad move, Trump.
The court of public opinion is a VERY big deal in elections. Now, Trump won’t be able to spoon feed his supporters insane conspiracy theories in hopes that it will save his plummeting approval ratings and dwindling base of supporters.