On Sunday, Sen. Marco Rubio appeared on CNN’s State of the Union, claiming a “different view” than the President with regard to whether or not the Department of Justice illegally spied on Trump’s campaign.
Trump conveyed his opinion earlier in the day (he wasn’t for being spied on).
Press pause — Dance break!
Now we’re back, with Rubio–
“I don’t believe that them looking into Carter Page means they were spying on the campaign. I also don’t believe it proves anything about collusion. … He was a guy that was on their screen even before the campaign. … I don’t think it’s part of any broader plot. The only plot here is the plot to interfere in our election by the Russians.”
— CNN (@CNN) July 22, 2018
As covered here, the DoJ released documents Saturday which indicate the FBI’s belief that Carter acted in cahoots with the Russians, thereby somewhat substantiating surveillance.
Republicans have criticized the surveillance, asserting warrants were granted due to the Steele dossier, which was funded in part by Hillary Clinton campaign. Moreover, it contained baseless accusations regarding Trump’s Russian alliance.
According to members of the GOP, the Justice Department neglected to inform the court of the dossier’s origin when they petitioned for a warrant.
Nonetheless, as Rubio told CNN, Page — like a bigmouthed character in a mafia movie that you just know is gonna get whacked — had been open in conversation about his ties to Russia.
Therefore, as Rubio sees it, everything’s totally cool:
“I don’t think they did anything wrong. There was a lot of reasons unrelated to the dossier why they wanted to look at Carter Page.”
Strategically, in this situation, it appears that Rubio and others are making a mistake to voice their opinions when they clash with those of Trump. Democrats would never do this.
I’m glad to see that Republicans are sometimes less plastic than the other side of the aisle, but in this case, it seems that silence would be advantageous. Then again, congressional Republicans have fewer than four months to remind voters who they are so they can be reinstated at the polls.
But which is more beneficial — to stand out with respectful disagreement on issues of one’s own side’s foreign collusion, or to present a united party front? The Democrats will leverage intraparty dissent.
Rubio seems unwise. Furthermore, the issue about which he is speaking doesn’t seem clear-cut on his side. He’s risking being wrong, while at the same time risking weakening the party. To me, that seems like a risk not worth taking.
What do you think? Is Rubio doing the right thing? Please let me know.
Check out my related article, found here.
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