On Wednesday evening, Rachel Maddow aired audio footage of Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) at a Republican fundraiser explaining the behind-the-scenes calculus of efforts on a few different fronts you might be familiar with Nunes’ involvement in: The ongoing Russia probe by Robert Mueller’s Special Counsel, and the vote to make nominee Brett Kavanaugh the newest Supreme Court Justice.
The recordings, obtained at a Fuse Washington fundraiser dinner in Spokane, Washington and held jointly with WA’s 5th District Congresswoman, Republican Cathy McMorris-Rodgers, could prove to be very problematic for the loyal Trump lapdog, as they appear to expose a concerted effort to obstruct justice.
The whole of the Maddow piece can be found here, but the pertinent parts are included in this article.
On the Russia probe, Nunes was caught saying that “[i]f Sessions won’t un-recuse and Mueller won’t clear the President, we’re the only ones, which is really the danger.”
The quote seems apropos of nothing, until you understand that he means Republicans need to keep control of Congress in order to clear the President if things don’t go their way.
That’s obstruction, plain and simple — he has made clear that he doesn’t care what the outcome of the investigation is, he intends for Trump to be cleared either by Sessions taking back over at DOJ, Mueller finding no wrongdoing, or the GOP simply clearing Trump’s name if either of those efforts fail.
But to drive the point home as to his cynical machinations, Nunes went on to answer a constituent’s question as to why Rod Rosenstein had not been impeached when so many Republican voters were calling for it.
Both Nunes and McMorris-Rodgers are captured in the following audio explaining that if the House had gone ahead with impeachment proceedings against the Deputy AG, it would endanger the President’s Supreme Court nomination of Brett Kavanaugh, forcing the Senate to take up a vote as to whether to convict.
Nunes overstates the case against Rosenstein, and conviction requires a two-thirds majority in the Senate, so his answer to the voter is nonsensical. But it does show that the GOP’s primary concerns are not actual justice — if, indeed, they believe that justice would be served by getting rid of the Deputy AG — but rather making political hay before the midterm election, which will almost certainly unseat too many of them for them to get much more done.
Listen to the audio here: