We're coming to it now. As I write this, America is speeding uncontrollably toward a constitutional crisis. The Mad King, today, is perched on the edge of his authority under Article II, shoving chocolate cake down his chubby piehole, wondering what it'll be like if he takes the plunge into uncharted territory.
As of this writing, it appears as though President Trump is getting ready to fire Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, the man in charge of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation. Consequently, he's preparing to call the congressional leadership's bluff, believing they won't actually proceed with impeachment proceedings in the event of more illegal shenanigans. At the same time, Michael Cohen is attempting to shield Trump from incriminating evidence found in the FBI's raid of Cohen's home, hotel room, bank and law office by asking for a restraining order against any delving into materials linked to Trump.
You know, because they're all so innocent, right?
It's been this way since the 2016 campaign -- Trump and his goon-squad taking incomprehensible and spastic measures to wiggle out of trouble, only to land themselves in even more trouble. Say it with me now: Trump always makes things worse for Trump.
On top of everything else going on, we've learned this week that Mueller and his team of untouchables are planning to release a report detailing how the president engaged in criminal obstruction of justice -- the cover-up portion of the overall Russia probe. In this forthcoming report to be delivered to Rod Rosenstein (or the fool who replaces him), Mueller will describe a variety of ways in which Trump attempted to obstruct justice, including the alleged promise of pardons for any and all witnesses in exchange for omerta, the Mafia vow of silence.
Despite the reality that Trump is about to get hammered by more than one count of obstruction and then potentially indicted by the Justice Department or impeached by the House of Representatives, Trump continues to stupidly meddle with the Mueller investigation and, as if that wasn't enough, the criminal investigation into his personal lawyer, Michael "Says Who?" Cohen.
In just the last 24 hours alone, Trump has taken the following actions, each of which could be seen as obstruction.
1) Smearing the investigators. Trump is reportedly recruiting all of his TV and online surrogates to repeat a scripted roster of smears against both former FBI Director James Comey and Rosenstein. In other words, Trump is publicly lying about the honesty and integrity of a witness in the Mueller probe and, naturally, the leader of the Mueller probe itself. Incidentally, Trump also referred to the FBI as a "den of thieves and lowlifes" on Friday. This isn't a man who's concerned with the ramifications of his actions, at least not when it comes to the FBI.
2) Lordy! He called Cohen? Apparently, Trump also spoke with Cohen by telephone last night. Yeah, the president, who is very likely incriminated in a variety of ways through Cohen's seized documents and devices, not to mention the existence of tapes, spoke with the target of a criminal investigation two days after his shit was nabbed in several no-knock raids. First of all, it's likely Cohen's phones have been tapped by investigators. Duh. Also, if Trump floated the idea of a pardon as he has before, he could be charged with obstructing this case, too. Pardons aside, the very idea of the President Of The United States speaking to a guy who could be charged any day now with serious financial crimes and more, some of which could be linked to Trump, is just ludicrous.
3) You're fired. If Trump fires Rosenstein, Mueller might have an all new item to add to his obstruction report, knowing that the firing is entirely motivated by Trump's obvious attempt to kill the Russia investigation. Same goes for firing Jeff Sessions or Mueller himself.
All told, Trump is clearly pushing the limits of his authority and the rule of law. He's acting as though none of this will backfire despite just about everything he's ever done backfiring by the day.
The nightmare scenario is that Trump merely hides behind the cloak of the presidency, refusing to acquiesce to anything, including a conviction on impeachment charges. He'd tell you that his fanboys will love him for it -- for sticking it to the man. This is how he thinks. As long as his red-hat base, which applauds everything he does anyway, supports his sinister means of wiggling away, he thinks he's unbreakable.
For years, I've been warning that Trump's populism combined with his toxic lack of respect for institutions and our constitutional system could ultimately lead to a crisis in which the commander-in-chief orders the military -- possibly in wartime -- to shield him from the Deep State conspirators engaged in a coup attempt against him. When you've convinced enough of your base that everyone is plotting against you, conceding to the plotters usually isn't one of your options. Trump is preparing for war against those who he perceives as being dissidents engaged in a conspiracy to remove him from office, and he's ready to do whatever's necessary to fight back, even if it means further obstruction charges or worse.
Trump is capable of anything, and he seems okay with destroying himself in the process. Kamikaze Biff, as it were.
We're well outside the mainstream now. You can feel it. Anything's possible, even a sudden presidential resignation. But before we reach the endgame, we should be prepared for chaos and more damage.
Trump will not go quietly.