Media Chewing on a Russian Collusion 'Wish Sandwich'
1980 was a very good year. Ronald Reagan was elected President, replacing Jimmy “Malaise” Carter. The Blues Brothers movie was released in 1980, featuring John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd. Both were funny guys, featured on Saturday Night Live back when it, too, was funny, rather than a late-night CNN political panel as it is now.
The Blues Brothers sang “Rubber Biscuit” with lyrics that are relevant today. “Have you ever heard of a wish sandwich? A wish sandwich is the kind of a sandwich where you have two slices of bread, and you wish you had some meat” Listening to the breathless media salivating over the latest smoking gun of Trump-Russia collusion and election hacking, a “wish sandwich” came to mind.
The media has its two slices of bread. Trump and Putin. Donald Jr and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya. Michael Flynn and the Russian ambassador. Jared Kushner and a Russian banker. Each pair is the two slices of bread necessary for a sandwich of Russian collusion. Except they have no meat. No evidence of collusion. No information passed from the Kremlin to the Trump campaign. No broken laws. Bread and no meat. A wish sandwich.
Every week it’s a new serving of bread sans meat. Each shocking revelation predicted to be the smoking gun leading to Trump’s impeachment and removal from office, his resignation, slinking back in disgrace to Trump Tower in Manhattan. Or better yet, good old fashioned treason as former VP candidate Tim Kaine suggested, the execution portion presumably left to the imagination of some James Hodgkinson type Bernie Sanders supporter.
Unfortunately for the left, their sandwich is devoid of meat. No laws broken. No crimes. Law professors from liberal institutions like Columbia and Harvard agree. A Columbia professor says, “It is unlikely the Trump administration has committed any crimes at this point.” Harvard’s Alan Dershowitz, “Doesn't see any legal jeopardy for Trump Jr.” Even the liberals say, “Where’s the beef?”
The wish sandwiches began before the election. A fake Russian golden shower dossier. Everyone in Trump’s campaign or family who ever spoke to a Russian national was somehow colluding to hack and steal the election from Hillary Clinton. Each new revelation just two slices of bread with no meat.
The latest being Donald Jr, meeting with someone promising opposition research on Clinton but delivering nothing. No information, no collusion. No meat in the sandwich. Just a meeting about adoption laws. No laws broken despite the wishes of the media. Perhaps even a set up to entrap the Trump campaign.
If Donald Jr had been smart, he would have met with the Ukrainians rather than the Russians. Unlike the Trump campaign, the Clinton campaign actually received opposition research on Paul Manafort, courtesy of a foreign government colluding with the Clinton campaign. Plenty of meat in that sandwich, but the media are afraid to take a bite. Unlike the wish sandwich of Donald Jr and the Russian lawyer.
Yet the media continues to wish for meat in their sandwich. Pretending that the latest story is an inch-thick pastrami sandwich from Katz’s Deli rather than two dried out slices of rye bread.
CNN believes the Donald Jr story “may be the straw that breaks the camel's back.” At least that’s the meat they are wishing for. Good luck. If this is the final straw, where are all the other straws weighing down the camel? Each and every previous accusation and story turned out to be a wish sandwich discarded on a rising heap of fake news and discredited stories.
Where are the Republicans, members of President Trump’s political party? Why are they not defending their president? The Kardashian sisters of the US Senate, John McCain and Lindsey Graham are hot and bothered over the Donald Jr story. McCain promises “many more shoes that will drop.” He should know. He sent one of his aides across the Atlantic to fetch a copy of the bogus golden shower dossier. In an effort to hurt Trump and influence the election. Why isn’t “ordinary citizen” John McCain being investigated for his Russian collusion?
Where are any Republican members of Congress defending their president against the incessant media attacks? Remember how Democrats circled the wagons around Bill Clinton, defending him from his myriad scandals? Republicans suck their thumbs and tut-tut over Trump and his family, secretly hoping he does go away so they can go back to their business of doing the bidding of their campaign donors. Like supporting and funding sex-change operations for the military.
If Republican members of Congress wanted to shut the Russia nonsense down, they could easily do so. Laugh at the media rather than stroking their chins, fretting about “the seriousness of the charges.” Do what they were elected to do. Legislate and advance their president’s agenda. Confirm his nominees. Repeal Obamacare. Cut taxes. Build the wall. Defund wasteful and destructive organizations like Planned Parenthood.
If the Trump agenda gets moved through Congress and into law, the media’s obsession with collusion would become even more irrelevant. Making it more likely that Republicans would prevail in the 2018 midterm elections.
Instead, by feeding the media narrative, Republicans provide a scent of meat to the media, encouraging them to chase their wish sandwiches. When they finally discover there’s no meat, they are enraged and immediately start looking for the next sandwich.
Republicans should ask the people, the voters, whether this Russian fable is a priority versus all the problems and issues Congress is ignoring. A recent NPR/PBS/Marist poll asked whether respondents thought Trump did anything illegal in his dealings with Putin and the Russians. Only 4 percent of Republicans versus 41 percent of Democrats through Trump broke laws. Why are Republicans feeding the Democrat narrative rather than reflecting the views of those who voted them into office?
The media and their political operatives in the Democrat Party have their latest wish sandwich. Donald Jr and a dodgy Russian lawyer. Wishing they had some meat but instead just two moldy slices of white bread. With Republicans joining Democrats in howling at the moon rather than doing their jobs.
Brian C Joondeph, MD, MPS, a Denver based physician and writer. Follow him on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.