There were four people at the meeting with Donald Trump, Jr.:
- The Russian lawyer;
- Donald Trump, Jr.;
- Paul Manafort; and,
- Jared Kushner
If it was not the Russians, that leaves people close to Trump. I am ruling out the Mueller team and FBI because of their statements yesterday afternoon, which strongly suggest they were relying on press reports and only got the emails after Don, Jr. released them publicly.
This situation begins to take on the form of a palace coup. It does seem that 75% of the people around Trump spend 80% of their time trying to knife each other. The President has always seemed to feed on that dynamic. But that dynamic is now sinking his ship of state.
It looks like people in Trumpland are so used to plotting against each other that they have forgotten doing so could also hurt their leader. Even removing this situation, one cannot help but notice the routine and ongoing back biting, back stabbing, whispering, and dead pool creations of Trump White House staffers.
If this leak came from Trumpland it ups the stakes significantly, causes the ship of state to take on more water, and potentially sabotages all their gains just to take out Junior. I am reminded of the fable about the frog and the scorpion. “It is not my fault; it is that of my nature; it is a constitutional habit I have of stinging.” But, I should conclude with this — given Junior’s boneheaded move to release what many see as a smoking gun, he probably does need to be sabotaged and made expendable. If one Trump must be made scapegoat, who better to be the scapegoat?