Stephen Bannon’s assertion in a new book that Donald Trump Jr. might have committed an act of “treason” by meeting with a Russian lawyer in June 2016 brings to mind a fascinating observation.
It didn’t come from me originally. I heard it from Jeffrey Toobin, a legal analyst for CNN. Toobin said it would be unconscionable for David Axelrod to turn on Barack Obama or Karl Rove to do the same thing to George W. Bush.
Those two former White House strategists and key political aides were loyal to the boss and remain so to this day. Bannon presents another situation altogether.
He has said that Trump Jr.’s meeting with the Russian legal eagle constituted potentially “unpatriotic” and “treasonous” activity. They met, according to a book, “Fire and Fury,” written by David Wolff, to discuss dirt on Hillary Rodham Clinton. The inference is that Don Jr. might have colluded with Russians seeking to influence the 2016 presidential election outcome.
The revelation made public has enraged the president. He says Bannon “lost his mind” when he was fired from his job as chief strategist for Donald Trump. He argues that Bannon had little influence or impact on the White House.
We might be witnessing an unprecedented unraveling of a presidential administration. It does appear to be unusual in the extreme that someone who once had the president’s ear to turn on him in the manner that has occurred.
What’s more, the reaction from the president does have the appearance of near-panic within the White House.
Toobin does pose a fascinating query. Can you imagine Presidents Obama and Bush being torpedoed in this fashion?