SEVERE WX : Air Stagnation Advisory View Alerts

Columnist: 18 reasons why Trump may be a Russian asset

Max Boot, a columnist for the Washington Post, discusses with CNN's Brooke Baldwin his article listing out 18 reasons why President Donald Trump could be a Russian asset.

Posted: Jan 15, 2019 9:11 AM
Updated: Jan 15, 2019 9:37 AM

In any other time, with any other president, the spectacle of the commander in chief honking hoarsely on the White House lawn about how "I never worked for Russia," would be the political equivalent of a five-alarm fire. Never in history has an American president been required to answer such serious, credible questions about his loyalties.

Today it's just another plot twist in the lurid telenovela that is Donald Trump's presidency.

The New York Times reported that after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, the feds began investigating whether the President was an intelligence threat. This suspicion arose naturally after Trump complained about Comey to Russian diplomats and then told NBC's Lester Holt that he had the "Russia thing" in mind when he axed the director.

The "thing" that troubled Trump was Moscow's attack on the 2016 election, which cast a dark shadow on his claim to legitimacy. In a fitting dramatic twist, his fateful decision to fire Comey prompted the appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller, whose work imperils Trump even more than his own chaos.

And the chaos is profound. You need only to consider the last few days to see the kinds of self-inflicted injuries that would have been momentous in another time:

On Thursday, Trump flew to Texas for an on-the-border photo op intended to boost his campaign to build a wall that would supposedly stop an "invasion" from the south. Despite the fact that no invasion is underway and that many politicians along the border reject it, Trump has continued to promote this boondoggle idea.

On Friday 800,000 federal workers experienced their first payless payday (some got check-like statements for $0.00) and stories of their anxieties began to accumulate. In a remarkable display of cluelessness, the President, who in his business career has declared bankruptcy many times, but thanks to family wealth never suffered personally, said, "I can relate."

On Saturday, the Washington Post revealed that the President has kept secret, even from his own aides, the content of his many conversations with Russian President Vladimir Putin. As America's main antagonist around the world, Putin's words should be examined closely by the experts. By hiding them, and personally confiscating his interpreter's notes from one meeting, Trump suggests he has much to hide.

Also on Saturday, officials of the Transportation Security Administration began noting serious problems with airport security screening related to the partial government shutdown, which Trump has said, quite publicly, is his responsibility. Working without pay, TSA agents have begun to call in sick, and in Miami, one terminal has been closed, intermittently, due to staffing shortages. Security line wait times are stretching to 90 minutes in Atlanta The US Travel Association estimates the shutdown is costing the economy $100 million per day in lost travel spending.

On Sunday, CNN confirmed an Axios report that Trump has lashed out at his budget director and acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney during a budget negotiation with congressional leaders. "Stop, stop, just stop -- What are you doing? You're f---ing it all up, Mick," the President reportedly said during the session. Of all Trump's aides, Mulvaney has been so loyal, even to the point of abandoning his personal convictions on certain matters, that one might think he would be the last person Trump would humiliate in this way.

Trump's demand for billions to build a useless wall is the reason for the government shutdown. The wall was also the centerpiece of a campaign that relied on countless lies and misrepresentation to provoke fear and racial animus to motivate his base of support.

This brings us back to the President standing on the South Lawn of the White House on Monday. In between references to a fast food banquet he had planned and a smarmy comment about two FBI agents (he referred to one as the "lover" of the other), Trump declined to join the GOP chorus condemning the white nationalism of Iowa Rep. Steve King. (The New York Times, in a profile article last week, quoted King as saying: "White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?")

But going easy on King, Trump maintained his commitment to the anti-immigrant theme that helped him gain the White House. He also kept alive a dramatic storyline he will no doubt exploit in future episodes of the drama he seems to favor over actual public service.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 394569

Reported Deaths: 5243
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah60720847
Washington42359405
Marion40153516
Clackamas33040387
Lane30428361
Jackson25105363
Deschutes23795189
Umatilla15144184
Linn14859183
Douglas13523293
Josephine10278247
Yamhill9840143
Klamath9112149
Polk8325102
Benton615338
Malheur593292
Coos5768109
Columbia438056
Jefferson424366
Lincoln365852
Crook343057
Union340756
Wasco318646
Clatsop263635
Baker221833
Tillamook218046
Hood River216537
Morrow197825
Curry193939
Harney121333
Grant109116
Lake105617
Wallowa76313
Sherman1933
Gilliam1854
Wheeler1141
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 5105427

Reported Deaths: 74781
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles153243027225
San Diego4091824350
Riverside3892365381
San Bernardino3762805983
Orange3352965756
Sacramento1690952452
Kern1582701828
Fresno1574692270
Santa Clara1528571928
Alameda1256281512
San Joaquin1080791835
Ventura1043091192
Contra Costa1042181056
Stanislaus919641429
Tulare867391100
San Francisco57141674
San Mateo56585631
Monterey52842626
Solano47828360
Santa Barbara47523555
Merced45309671
Sonoma43349414
Placer42458473
Imperial38932776
Kings35370367
San Luis Obispo31667360
Madera26388311
Shasta26221461
Butte25608318
Santa Cruz22402224
Yolo21722261
Marin18587249
El Dorado18448168
Sutter14646186
Napa13446106
Yuba1079891
Tehama10316131
Humboldt10294119
Nevada10112105
Mendocino864999
Lassen797656
San Benito787979
Tuolumne778491
Lake7057113
Amador580067
Siskiyou479657
Glenn458536
Calaveras445788
Del Norte377942
Colusa328321
Inyo257346
Plumas19577
Mono19034
Mariposa162218
Trinity100717
Modoc7936
Sierra2190
Unassigned1560
Alpine1080
Out of CA00
Medford
Cloudy
40° wxIcon
Hi: 53° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 37°
Brookings
Mostly Cloudy
46° wxIcon
Hi: 55° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 46°
Crater Lake
Partly Cloudy
40° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 37°
Grants Pass
Cloudy
40° wxIcon
Hi: 51° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 37°
Klamath Falls
Partly Cloudy
33° wxIcon
Hi: 52° Lo: 28°
Feels Like: 27°
Air stagnation ends for the Basin today, big changes coming next week
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events