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“I Am Totally Vindicated By This Report Whose Contents I Have Not Seen”

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– The Justice Department on Wednesday appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller as special counsel to oversee the federal investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, including potential collusion between Trump campaign associates and Russian officials.

Well, this was predictable:

What’s weird to me is that a lot of non-tankies seem to be buying into this narrative before even knowing what’s in the report, which is weird (although it could be that frequent MSNBC viewers have been overpromised.) But Wheeler has a good summary of what the basic outlines of the report are likely to look like:

All that said, we can anticipate a great deal of what the Mueller report will say by unpacking the lies Trump’s aides told to hide various ties to Russia: The report will show:

Trump pursued a ridiculously lucrative $300 million real estate deal even though the deal would use sanctioned banks, involve a former GRU officer as a broker, and require Putin’s personal involvement at least through July 2016.
The Russians chose to alert the campaign that they planned to dump Hillary emails, again packaging it with the promise of a meeting with Putin.
After the Russians had offered those emails and at a time when the family was pursuing that $300 million real estate deal, Don Jr took a meeting offering dirt on Hillary Clinton as “part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump.” At the end (per the sworn testimony of four people at the meeting) he said his father would revisit Magnitsky sanctions relief if he won. Contrary to the claim made in a statement authored by Trump, there was some effort to follow up on Jr’s assurances after the election.
The campaign asked rat-fucker Roger Stone to optimize the WikiLeaks releases and according to Jerome Corsi he had some success doing so.
In what Andrew Weissmann called a win-win (presumably meaning it could help Trump’s campaign or lead to a future business gig for him), Manafort provided Konstantin Kilimnik with polling data that got shared with Ukrainian and Russian oligarchs. At the same meeting, he discussed a “peace” plan for Ukraine that would amount to sanctions relief.
Trump undercut Obama’s response to the Russian hacks in December 2016, in part because he believed retaliation for the hacks devalued his victory. Either for that reason, to pay off Russia, and/or to pursue his preferred policy, Trump tried to mitigate any sanctions, an attempt that has (with the notable exception of those targeting Oleg Deripaska) been thwarted by Congress.

We know all of these things — save the Stone optimization detail, which will be litigated at trial unless Trump pardons him first — to be true, either because Trump’s aides and others have already sworn they are true, and/or because we’ve seen documentary evidence proving it.

This is very damning! And if it’s not going to lead to Donald Trump being removed from office this was never a serious possibility.

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