Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Friday, July 14, 2017

Matthew Yglesias: The Trump team's habit of lying in public about its contacts with various official and unofficial emissaries of the Russian government is problematic on its own terms, but especially troubling because it raises the possibility that American foreign policy could be influenced by the fear of blackmail. That, you'll recall, was the basis for the original bombshell Trump/Russia leak story in which it came out that US government surveillance of Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak revealed that he and former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn had discussions about sanctions during the Obama-Trump transition period. For an incoming administration staffer to discuss sanctions with an ambassador is not a crime or necessarily scandalous. But Flynn, seemingly aware of the political sensitivities around the Trump/Russia nexus, lied about the conversation both externally and internally to the administration.

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Sally Yates, the acting attorney general at the time, saw the problem. She warned White House Counsel Don McGahn that "the national security adviser essentially could be blackmailed by the Russians."

The theory here is simple. If you lie to the public about meetings with the Russian government, the Russian government will know that you lied and could threaten to release embarrassing and personally damaging information unless you take positions they like.

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Trump's Russian ties obviously are a threat to national security. But unless we come up with a signed confession from Trump stating that he gave Russia our nuclear codes and the names of all our agents around the world, no right winger will ever acknowledge it.

#1 | Posted by moder8 at 2017-07-14 06:12 PM | Reply

Actually Trump has solved the blackmailing of government liars problem.
Everyone knows that all the current admin staff lie all the time. There is no shame in lying or collusion or nepotism or leechery or accepting 'gifts' from foreigners. That is all standard practice now so blackmail is no longer a concern.

Make Amerca Grift Again!

#2 | Posted by bored at 2017-07-14 06:42 PM | Reply

Russia doesn't actually have to say a word or do a thing if indeed the Trump campaign coordinated a op with them against Hillary Clinton to influence/alter the natural flow of last year's election race. The fact that Russia knows what Trump hypothetically did is constant unspoken leverage because if Russia chooses, they can release damning evidence putting the Trumpers in jail.

If Russia offered any type of assistance to the Trump campaign, it was a quid pro quo and one only need to look at the RNC platform and it's easing of its language regarding Crimea and Ukraine to understand how such a deal might work.

#3 | Posted by tonyroma at 2017-07-14 06:43 PM | Reply

But unless we come up with a signed confession from Trump stating that he gave Russia our nuclear codes and the names of all our agents around the world, no right winger will ever acknowledge it.

Are you kidding? They'll claim Hillary forged it in the basement of her pizza parlor crime lair while Podesta and Obama watched and laughed.

#4 | Posted by jpw at 2017-07-14 08:58 PM | Reply | Funny: 1 | Newsworthy 2

BENGAZI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

#5 | Posted by zelkova at 2017-07-16 11:30 AM | Reply

I hope that when more **** bubbles up they skip the "fake news" and "I don't recall" song and dance and simply say "we did it, so what????"

None of their supporters or any elected member of the GOP are going to care anyway.

#6 | Posted by MrSilenceDogood at 2017-07-16 11:43 AM | Reply

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