If you ever wondered what Donald Trump could possibly be doing all day besides seething in his jammies while gorging on cable news, now we know. He’s not just rage tweeting from America’s taxpayer-funded residence. He’s running an entire criminal enterprise of a scale beyond your wildest dreams straight out of the Oval Office.
For that reason, Democrats’ “narrow” impeachment inquiry into Trump’s extortion of Ukraine is already unfolding a little like a trip to the grocery store for just that one item when you’re famished. If you’re not careful, you can get so distracted with all the tantalizing mouth-watering options falling into your cart that when you reach the checkout line, you realize you entirely forgot to pick up that one item.
We should have known it would be like this. Every time the corruption surrounding Trump has become the center of a media storm over the past several years, the amount of willful misconduct and intentional obstruction has turned out to be staggering larger than anyone who isn’t a serial criminal can imagine. For instance, it wasn’t just that Trump’s campaign and transition had weird contacts with Russia, it was that it had more than a 100 contacts, Trump publicly solicited the Kremlin’s help, then hired the guy responsible for some of those contacts as his top national security adviser, asked his chief investigator to quit investigating that adviser, fired his top investigator, told the target of those investigations (Russia) how relieved he was and that he couldn’t care less about any of their election misdeeds, fired his acting attorney general, forced out his attorney general, and repeatedly attempted to end the investigation that blossomed out of his repeated efforts to end the original investigation.
But it’s not like Russia was the only instance of Americans thinking, good god, how much worse can this get? Remember when we first learned in January 2018 that Trump’s former lawyer/fixer Michael Cohen had opened a shell company weeks before the 2016 election to make hush money payments to porn star Stormy Daniels. Wow, just wow. Oh wait, there’s more: Cohen also used that same LLC to pay off another dalliance by top GOP/Trump donor Elliott Broidy, then he received other payments totaling nearly $5 million from multiple Fortune 500 companies and one company tied to a Russian oligarch for his ‘consulting’ advice that involved zero expertise other than opening doors to the Trump administration. Oh, but there wasn’t just one Trump affair to hide in advance of the 2016, there was another and that was handled through a “catch-and-kill” scheme (a new phrase to most Americans!) in which the publishing company of the National Enquirer bought the exclusive rights to former Playboy model Karen McDougal’s story then locked it away—in a safe. There was a safe! Full of stories publisher David Pecker had allegedly considered too radioactive to leave just laying around somewhere for discovery, and possible leaks, or even tawdry publication. Egad!