Despite my efforts to appear above the fray, au courant, sophisticated, a deep Marxist philosopher absorbed by underlying structures and world-historical movements, a veritable zeitgeistnik, the truth, as I suppose is obvious, is that I am totally enmeshed in the minutiae of the daily political catastrophe. The latest source of fluttering heartbeats and heavy breathing is Andrew McCabe’s book tour through the talk shows. [I shan’t explain who Andrew McCabe is. If you don’t know, you won’t care about the rest of this post.]
Everyone on cable news is obsessing about McCabe’s recounting of the meetings at Justice in which Rod Rosenstein brought up the 25th Amendment as a possible way of getting rid of Trump, but that is not, to my way of thinking, the real news in McCabe’s insider account.
According to McCabe, very shortly after Trump was inaugurated, the FBI received information that raised the possibility that Trump was acting as an agent of Russia, and so a counterintelligence investigation was launched [this is not the real meat – wait for it.] Then – and this is the important tidbit – he went to a meeting of the super clued in group of members of Congress known colloquially as the Gang of Eight to brief them. The Gang of Eight consists of the Senate Majority Leader, the Senate Minority Leader, the Chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, the Ranking Minority Member of that Committee, the Speaker of the House, the Minority Leader of the House, and the Chair and Ranking Member of the House Intelligence Committee. Regardless of which party is in the majority in either chamber, this is by construction a committee of four Republicans and Four Democrats.
Let me make two points about McCabe’s account of the meeting. First, it is certainly, necessarily true. Why? Because if it were not, as soon as McCabe said it on national TV, at least one of those eight people would have immediately contradicted him. But none of them has. Trey Gowdy, who was not in that room and is no longer in Congress, has just stated that he does not believe it. But not one of the three Republicans still in Congress [Paul Ryan has retired] has backed him up.
Second, according to McCabe’s account, the Committee did not explode, erupt, call for hearings, demand that he resign, charge him with treason. Think about that. The Republicans have just, against all odds, won the presidency and both houses of Congress, and the FBI is launching an investigation to find out whether the man just inaugurated is a Russian plant, a real live Manchurian Candidate! AND AFTER HEARING THE EVIDENCE, THEY JUST SIT THERE AND TAKE IT.
I suggest that this is the most explosive single piece of news to come out of this entire affair.