MSNBC’s O’Donnell: ‘Donald Trump Is A Russian Operative’
MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell says that ‘Donald Trump is a Russian operative.’
MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell: “But we begin tonight with another test of America’s ability to be shocked by Donald Trump who has very deliberately shocked America to the point where he hopes that shock has been replaced by acceptance. The President is a Russian operative. That sounds like the description of a bad Hollywood screenplay, but it is real, and it is Vladimir Putin’s greatest achievement. Decades after America’s victory in the Cold War and collapse of the Soviet Union, the president of the United States is now helping the president of Russia help the president of the United States to get re-elected so that the president of Russia will have four more years of the president of the United States who he wants in the Oval Office. This is one of those shocking news days, if you retain the capacity to be shocked, in the Trump era by the Trump regime, which might be better labeled the Trump-Putin regime. And it’s one of those breaking news situations that suddenly makes recent news make more sense, like the recent news that Donald Trump has outdone himself by appointing one of the most ridiculous, incompetent stooges in the Trump Administration to be nothing less than the Acting Director of National Intelligence. The president gave that job to his current Ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, who intends to remain Ambassador to Germany while being the Acting Director of National Intelligence. And Richard Grenell will be replacing Joseph Maguire, who was serving as an Acting Director of National Intelligence, and who’s expected to be nominated by the President, to be confirmed by Mitch McConnell’s Senate as the official Director of National Intelligence, until Vladimir Putin showed Donald Trump that he needed an even more incompetent Director of National Intelligence because Vladimir Putin is working hard to re-elect his favorite president of the United States in history.
And Donald Trump doesn’t want the American intelligence community getting in the way of Vladimir Putin’s help as intelligence officials did exactly one week ago in a briefing to the House Intelligence Committee, which we are just learning about tonight. According to reports in ‘The New York Times’ and ‘The Washington Post,’ Joseph Maguire’s staff briefed the House Intelligence Committee on Russia’s latest efforts to interfere in the presidential campaign to help Donald Trump. ‘The Washington Post’ was first to report President Trump’s reaction to intelligence officials following the law and briefing the House Intelligence Committee on Russia’s latest attempts to help the Trump campaign. ‘The Washington Post’ reports Trump erupted at his acting director of national intelligence, Joseph Maguire, in the Oval Office, perceiving him and his staff as disloyal for speaking to Congress about Russia’s perceived preference. There was a dressing down of Maguire, said another individual. Maguire came away despondent. ‘The Washington Post’ and ‘The New York Times’ report that the intelligence briefing of the committee by Joseph Maguire’s staff, led by Shelby Pearson, became contentions with Republicans on the committee arguing against the intelligence findings that were being presented to the committee. According to ‘The Washington Post,’ one member of the committee violated the committee’s secrecy rules and told Donald Trump about the briefing.
‘The Washington Post’ says Trump learned about Pearson’s remarks from Representative Devin Nunes, the committee’s ranking Republican and a staunch Trump ally, said one person familiar with the matter. Trump’s suspicions of the intelligence community have often been fueled by Nunes, who was was the president in California on Wednesday when he announced on Twitter that Grenell would become the acting director, officials said. A spokesman for Nunes did not respond to requests for comment. And now the acting director of national intelligence, Richard Grenell, will probably or surely be operating under a direct order from the president not to reveal to the House and Senate Intelligence Committees, as is required by law, what Vladimir Putin is doing to help Donald Trump get re-elected. That is what the American presidency has become tonight. That is where this country is tonight. Donald Trump is operating in the White House in conjunction with Vladimir Putin to hide what Vladimir Putin is doing to help Donald Trump get re-elected. Donald Trump is a Russian operative, if tonight’s reporting by ‘The Washington Post’ and ‘The New York Times’ is true. And everything else we know about Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin indicates that it is true.”[clip starts] REPORTER: “Did you want President Trump to win the election, and did you direct any of your officials to help him do that?”
PUTIN (via translator): “Yes, I did. Yes, I did, because he talked about bringing the U.S.-Russia relationship back to normal.”
O’DONNELL: “Russia’s interference in the 2016 election to help Donald Trump has been proved far beyond a reasonable doubt. And Donald Trump was not president in 2016, Donald Trump did not have the kind of powers he has now to actively help the president of Russia help re-elect the president of the United States. This is a darkly momentous event in the history of this country, in the history of this world. Vladimir Putin has become Donald Trump’s running mate once again.”