"You lie to the American people enough, at some point they figure out you're lying, and they completely tune you out. I would say we're facing that point right now."
The Russia investigation hangs over Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address, but that isn’t stopping Sarah Huckabee Sanders from pretending nothing’s wrong.
And “Morning Joe” host Joe Scarborough isn’t letting her get away with it.
The White House press secretary appeared on NBC’s “Today Show” Tuesday to hype Trump’s address. Asked why Trump keeps going after people who are conducting the Russia probe, Sanders said the investigation hasn’t “found anything yet,” and that Americans are “frustrated” by “Russia Fever.”
Minutes later, however, Joe Scarborough gave Sanders a point-by-point tutorial on what the Russia investigation has already yielded.
“I hate to break it to her,” Scarborough said. “I know she’s busy and maybe she hasn’t followed the news, she says there’s nothing there.”
Then he addressed Sander directly. “I know you’re busy and sometimes you can’t read all the news clips, we can’t hold you to that high of a standard to be able to read your entire Twitter feed.”
He began by describing disgraced former national security adviser Michael Flynn, “who would be the closest person to the White House he was arrested, he was charged, and he pled to a crime. And he is now cooperating with the independent counsel.”
Scarborough then talked about former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser and current Mueller informant George Papadopoulos. “I don’t want to give her too many facts,” he said, but Papadopolous pleaded guilty “and he is cooperating with this investigation that you claim has proved nothing.”
Then, Scarborough reminded Sanders about indicted former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort. “I don’t know if you missed that, Sarah Huckabee Sanders,” Scarborough said. “He, too, arrested, and I think he’s out on $10 million bail, so it couldn’t have been that bad. He’s going to jail for life, most likely.”
Scarborough threw in indicted former Trump campaign and transition official Rick Gates for good measure.
“So, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, those are just four. Other indictments are coming, you know they are. So you want to be careful on what you say in front of the cameras.”
“It reminded me of Ken Burns’ documentary,” Scarborough said. “You lie to the American people enough, at some point they figure out you’re lying, and they completely tune you out. I would say we’re facing that point right now.”
The little three-letter word “yet” is doing a lot of work for Trump and his minions, who rely on the fact that Trump hasn’t been charged in order to claim the investigation has been fruitless. But Scarborough’s litany is just the thin edge of what we already know, and doesn’t include the clear public evidence of collusion, and even clearer repeated instances of obstruction of justice.
The clock is ticking for Trump, and as it does, his desperation grows. But in the end, neither he nor Sanders can escape the truth.