The search for the person or persons involved in leaking President Trump’s phone call to Russian President Vladimir Putin, including his decision to ignore an express directive to NOT congratulate him on his election win, continues.
The scope of the search may be narrowing, as some lawmakers are pointing fingers at the White House national security team.
Rep. Mark Meadows, a conservative leader and foreign policy expert, expressed outrage at the leak and suggested that it and others thought to come from the national security council are crimes.
“Here’s the big deal. If you’ve got the national security council team leaking to the press, that’s a big deal,” he told reporters at a Heritage Foundation sponsored “Conversations with Conservatives” on Capitol Hill Wednesday.
“Quite frankly, some of the other stuff they’ve leaked is actually a crime,” he added.
If Meadows is correct, this could be especially troubling for National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, who has been rumored to be on the short list of those likely to be fired next.
It doesn’t really inspire confidence in his ability to keep a handle on his team, if they’re leaking conversations – even those truly dumb and ill-advised conversations – of the president’s to the press.
As has been mentioned before, it could very well have been for the purpose of embarrassing Trump into compliance.
It’s been tried before. It doesn’t work, or at least, not for long.
Meadows said that since it dealt with a foreign leader, the leak “had to” come from the president’s national security staff headed by McMaster.
After engaging in the required daily kneeling at the altar of Whataboutism (…but Obama…), Meadows went on to suggest that the call wasn’t a major concern.
“I’m probably more concerned about leaks within the administration. You have to understand that it would be like my chief of staff leaking information that we had in a conversation on anything. Whether it’s [Trump’s call] appropriate or not appropriate, there’s a bigger concern there within the West Wing if you’ve got people on the national security team that have leaked. That’s where it had to have come from. It’s a very small group of people that would of even had any knowledge of that,” he said.
To be clear, nobody seems to be leaking in an effort to harm national security, but rather, in an effort to get some kind of control over a president who refuses to follow protocol or take instruction.
There’s no sense in doing things that will ultimately blow back on the leaker and his department, however. Trump isn’t going to listen, regardless.