Surrounded by foes, Emperor Trump moves to put himself above the law

Amanda Marcotte:

’The heat is turning up on Donald Trump this week, as special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation is making news every day, giving a strong impression that justice circles ever closer to Trump himself. … As the walls close in around the president this week, there’s been a detectable shift in the way that Trump and his protectors in both the right-wing media and the Republican Party have defended him. The pretense of innocence is slipping away and in its place is rising a new excuse: Donald Trump and his associates are and should be above the law….

This pretense of respect for rule of law is quickly eroding as it becomes likelier that Trump could be in real trouble. While Trump still occasionally throws the word “innocent” around, he’s been increasingly bold about implying that he and his associates simply cannot be held accountable to the same rules as everyone else.…’

Via Salon.com

Trump Is Compromised by Russia

Omirmkrisciilkr32f99Michelle Goldberg, NYT opinion columnist:

’One of the chief questions in the Trump-Russia scandal has been whether Vladimir Putin has leverage over the president of the United States, and, if so, what that leverage looks like. The significance of the fabled “pee tape,” after all, is not that it would reveal Donald Trump to be a pervert bent on defiling the place where Barack Obama slept. Rather, the tape matters because, if real, it would show the president to be vulnerable to Russian blackmail.

That’s also why evidence of Trump’s business involvement with Russia would be significant, as Trump himself acknowledged shortly before his inauguration, when he tweeted, “Russia has never tried to use leverage over me. I HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH RUSSIA — NO DEALS, NO LOANS, NO NOTHING!”

We still don’t know for certain if Russia has used leverage over Trump. But there should no longer be any doubt that Russia has leverage over him.…’

Via New York Times