Donald Trump and his team spent almost a year publicly and knowingly pushing a lie about the infamous Trump Tower meeting between a Russian lawyer, Donald Trump Jr., and other Trump campaign officials, a newly revealed memo shows.
According to The New York Times, Team Trump repeatedly told the press that he had nothing to do with drafting a false statement on his son’s behalf, but in a private memo, the president’s lawyers admitted that he did, in fact, dictate the misleading statement.
More from the report:
For nearly a year, the denials from President Trump’s lawyers and spokeswoman were unequivocal. No, the president did not dictate a misleading statement released in his son’s name.
But in a confidential, hand-delivered memo to the special counsel, Mr. Trump’s lawyers acknowledged that, yes, Mr. Trump had dictated the statement, which attempted to deflect questions about a meeting with a Kremlin-tied lawyer at Trump Tower. Prosecutors are asking whether the statement was part of an effort by the president to obstruct a federal investigation.
Even for a president whose false statements have been constantly cited by fact-checkers, this was a stark private acknowledgment of what was a repeated public falsehood. And it sums up the dilemma that Mr. Trump faces as he weighs whether to sit for an interview with the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III.
This is a two-pronged disaster for Trump
This unearthed memo is bad for Trump for two reasons.
First, because the misleading statement dictated by Trump is currently part of Robert Mueller’s obstruction investigation. With Monday’s reporting from The New York Times, we know now that Trump and his team repeatedly lied about the president’s involvement in the statement.
Second, as The Times pointed out, it’s further evidence that Trump wouldn’t survive a sit-down interview with special counsel Robert Mueller. He would perjure himself faster than Trump could say “fake news.”
So, not only is Trump now caught in (another) massive lie that adds more evidence to Mueller’s obstruction case, but he is proving that a moment of scrutiny in the witness chair would sink him.
It’s no wonder they are starting to float the idea of a presidential self-pardon.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.