Monday August 22, 2016
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I think the whole full-court press to protect Hillary Clinton's emails has little to do with Hillary Clinton. I think it has to do with keeping Bill Clinton - former President of the United States Bill Clinton - from being indicted for conspiracy to sell access to Hillary's State Department.
On Friday, former top dog of the Donald Trump campaign, Paul Manafort resigned. This was about two days after the top dog his own self, Donald Trump, hired Stephen Bannon who, like Trump, has never been in a major political campaign before, to be the new top dog.
Trump also hired one of his pollsters, Kellyanne Conway, to be his campaign manager in spite of her never having managed any campaign, at any level, previously.
Ok. So here's what I think happened. This isn't so much political theory as it is a treatment for a screenplay.
On Thursday of last week, a junior employee of Paul Manafort (who held the title of Campaign Chairman at the time) went to a junior employee of Kellyanne Conway (newly anointed Campaign Manager) in Trump Tower with a sheet of paper showing all of Manafort's scheduled appearances on Sunday Morning TV shows.
Conway's staffer took it, retreated into Conway-land, and returned with a piece of paper of her own. He or she said to Manafort's staffer "This is the schedule Kellyanne has approved."
It was a blank sheet of paper.
Manafort resigned on Friday morning.
On the Clinton email front, here's another screenplay: I think we've all been taken in by a massive misdirection operation.
I believe reporter Ron Fournier and I may have been among the first to suggest that the disappearance of all those Hillary emails had nothing (or little) to do with national security, but had a very, very lot to do with an illegally cozy relationship between the Clinton Foundation and the U.S. Department of State.
Of course, everyone knows that now with the business about the Nigerian guy who wanted to be on a high-security State Department commission having become public information, but back in the day Fournier and I were among the few shouting into the wind.
But, I now believe this is a double misdirection. We are being misdirected into thinking that high-level staffers at the Department of State (who were on just about every payroll available in Manhattan and the District of Columbia) and high level Hillary staffers at the Clinton Foundation were fostering these relationships.
With exactly ZERO evidence to support this theory, I now believe that the person most in legal jeopardy of being indicted for conspiracy to sell access to the State Department is the 42nd President of the United States, William Jefferson Clinton.
If Hillary is elected President, the largest rug in the history of the world will be woven under which to sweep this. If Trump is elected, the Ds will scream "POLITICS" and it will be very tough for a Trump-led Justice Department to pursue.
We know Bill. We know that he has learned he can charm (or parse) his way out of anything. He learned how to raise money for his Foundation and for himself and for his wife and for his daughter. He learned how to couch those pleas for funding so they have a reasonable chance of claiming they are legal.
It's another "definition of 'is'" deal.
Forget about Hillary's disappeared emails. Some official entity needs to subpoena Bill's emails for the four years that Hillary was Secretary of State.
The play for the Ds is not to stop the demands for Hillary's erased emails. The play is to slow walk those demands until Hillary wins the election and buries any hint of Bill's illegally selling access to his wife's staff.
Lad Link: Every time I think "This is the best piece @ReedGalen has written" he comes up with a better one. This is a better one. Read it HERE.
One the Secret Decoder Ring page today: Links to Kellyanne Conway's background (via Cosmo!), Paul Manafort's resignation, and to the NYT's look at the relationship between the Clinton Foundation and the State Department.
The Mullfoto is another in the series of food trucks that have invaded L Street, NW. This one, though gets full marks for its logo.
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