Contrary to Trump's claims of "vindication," Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy says, "There is a Russia investigation without a dossier."
Donald Trump apparently thought that the fraudulent Republican intelligence memo would give him the cover he needed to fire Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, but that hasn’t been working out for him this weekend.
On Saturday, Trump desperately insisted that the memo “totally vindicates” him in the Russia probe, but he was the only one singing that tune. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, whose ostensible recusal placed Rosenstein in charge of the Russia probe, felt compelled to praise Rosenstein after Trump’s plotting against him.
And on Sunday morning, one Republican member of the House Intelligence Committee flatly disagreed that the memo vindicated Trump, while one of the memo’s authors, South Carolina Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy, completely blew that notion apart.
On CBS News’ “Face the Nation,” host Margaret Brennan asked Gowdy if the memo indeed “vindicated” Trump.
“I actually don’t think it has any impact on the Russia probe, for this reason …” Gowdy replied.
“The memo has no impact on the Russia probe?” Brennan interrupted.
“No, not to me, it doesn’t,” Gowdy answered, adding, “There is a Russia investigation without a dossier.”
Gowdy then ticked off just some of the damaging evidence that the investigation has uncovered, independent of the memo’s contents.
“(T)he dossier has nothing to do with the meeting at Trump Tower,” Gowdy said. “The dossier has nothing to do with an email sent by Cambridge Analytica. The dossier really has nothing to do with George Papadopoulos’ meeting in Great Britain. It also doesn’t have anything to do with obstruction of justice. So there’s going to be a Russia probe, even without a dossier.”
Gowdy spent the balance of the interview trying to justify the release of a memo that even Trump’s FBI and Justice Department say is inaccurate and a danger to national security, which makes it all the more remarkable that even he refused to go along with Trump’s claims.
Trump may still try to use the memo as an excuse to fire Rosenstein, but so far, very few Republicans appear willing to go out on that reckless limb with him.