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Hullabaloo


Monday, April 10, 2017

 
I've gotcher "both sides do it for you right here"

by digby




Micah Sifry wrote a funny joke imagining what would happen if Hillary Clinton engaged in Donald Trump's nepotism. (I posted it here.) Let's just say, it wouldn't happen. In fact, if Clinton tried to hire her son-in-law and daughter to work in the White House, there would already be a full scale bi-partisan investigation for her probable impeachment for violating the nepotism laws.

This is indisputable.

Look at how the Village idiots on Meet the Press treated that joke yesterday morning:

CHUCK TODD:

Back now with the panel, there is a lot of palace intrigue this week. Here are the headlines all there, they were all semi-Bannon related. Steve Bannon, the chief strategist there, Rich Lowry what do you make of it? Because, and do you connect Bannon being kicked off the National Security Council. Two days later, something that he argued against, a Syria strike happens. It's clear that if it's Bannon versus the president's son-in-law, Bannon is losing.

RICH LOWRY:

Yeah, it's not hard to handicap that one because there is only one person who can't be fired in that equation. And, if the Democrats take over, and this is one bizarre thing about this administration, you have Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump, who wouldn't be within a hundred miles of any other Republican administration. If they take over, I think you will see probably a less chaotic White House, but on policy I would worry anything that might be embarrassing at a dinner party with Anna Wintour will either be jettisoned or significantly softened.

DAVID BROOKS:

That is to me...I do think son-in-laws do get fired, by the way, some of them. It's like a philosophical difference almost. There is a fancy restaurant in New York called Cipriani, which is sort of the Jared Kushner wing of the Republican party--

RICH LOWRY

David has never been there--

DAVID BROOKS:

I have never been there, but I have walked by it. Then there is a bunch of truck stops in Texas called Buc-ee's which is the Steve Bannon wing and they are very different parts of America and which is this administration going to orient around - that's fundamentally a philosophical question and it is hard to have a single strategic administration where you're trying to be Cipriani's and Buc-ee's at the same time.

CHUCK TODD:

And going back to the President's son-in-law, at the end of the day, you can't have a troika if one of them can't be fired.

DANIELLE PLETKA:

No, I think you-- look, you can't have a troika. The problem with this administration is the palace intrigue, it's like the sublime port. The old Byzantine Empire where, you know, you have the Grand Vizier, and that's Bannon. And then you've got the family and the favorite daughter and the son-in-law.

CHUCK TODD:

Right.

DANIELLE PLETKA:

And for sure Bannon is the one who is expendable in that equation. But he has a lot of sway with the president, otherwise, he wouldn't be there.

CHUCK TODD:

Is Bannon one you want out, outside of the tent?

HELENE COOPER:

Not to mention the fact that Bannon is, you know, in many ways, credited for helping Trump to get elected.

DANIELLE PLETKA:

Rightly.

HELENE COOPER:

I mean that's not-- I certainly don't think it was Jared Kushner.

CHUCK TODD:

Yeah.

HELENE COOPER:

But I think it's certain, you know, when you look at this kind of palace intrigue, I thought it was fascinating that General Dunford, the Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff chose to take Kushner with him on that trip to Iraq this week. It was very much-- and you see that the rest of the administration is sort of reading tea leaves, as well. The Pentagon certainly thinks that Kushner is where their future is.

RICH LOWRY:

This is an amazing thing. You look at Washington, there's no Trumpist wing in Congress. And the core Trumpists are only just a faction within the White House itself. And what I fear is what was best about Trumpism, a focus on working class voters--

CHUCK TODD:

Right.

RICH LOWRY:

--a widening out of economic policy beyond marginal tax cuts, that's going to be jettisoned.

CHUCK TODD:

I've got to read this, though, this little alternative-- imagine the alternative here. It was written in something called Civil Hall by a man named Micah Sifry. "President Hillary Clinton quietly sent her son-in-law, investment banker Marc Mezvinsky, to Iraq on Monday, while Clinton's husband has largely stayed out of the White House and remained at home in New York, her daughter, Chelsea, has also taken an unpaid role in the administration while continuing to run the family foundation and earning five and six-figure fees giving speeches to corporations with interests in Washington." Ah!

DANIELLE PLETKA:

Totally credible. Totally credible.

CHUCK TODD:

Yeah.

DANIELLE PLETKA:

It would happen. And by the way, to be fair, everybody would have said exactly the same thing that they said about Jared Kushner going to Iraq. People would be critical. The problem with Hillary was she had her daughter and a foundation and it looked corrupt. And, you know what?

DAVID BROOKS:

I-- why did we fight this revolution? Because now we just have a monarchy with just family intrigue and things like that. The one thing about the Bannon thing that interests me personally is you don't have to be kind to succeed in Washington, but you do have to be nice. You have to be superficially pleasant to the people you work with. And fundamentally, I think Bannon is failing that test.

CHUCK TODD:

What happens if former Goldman Sachs-er Gary Cohn ends up as chief of staff? I mean to me, it's like he's already flipped-- you know, you could say he's flipped on Syria.

HELENE COOPER:

Yeah, yeah.

CHUCK TODD:

That'd be another pretty large flip.

HELENE COOPER:

It would be a huge flip. And we would be seeing a return to the Donald Trump that we used to think we had, the same Donald Trump who said to many people, you know, to many liberals, "You're going to like having me as president, don't worry about it," the Donald Trump that we, you know, before he moved further to the right to embrace more of the Republican orthodoxy, I think that's where we would be moving.

DANIELLE PLETKA:

Yeah, but we've got the midterms next year.

HELENE COOPER:

Yeah.

DANIELLE PLETKA:

And if Donald Trump abandons the people who elected him, and Bannon does, in many ways, represent that wing of the Republican Party, then he's going to be in trouble. And the Republican Party's going to be in trouble in 2018.

CHUCK TODD:

All right. That's a good place to pause. We'll be back in just 45 seconds with Endgame and what Hillary Clinton just said about President Trump and the people who voted for him.

I give up.

.