GTKYG – Chain of Succession

Welcome back to the “Get to Know Your Government” series.  Today, I want to talk about a subject that might not be known by too many people outside of history buffs and Constitutional Law scholars, but that I feel will be heading to the forefront of conversation in 2018.

The American Presidential Chain of Succession.

As I covered in GTKYG-Presidential Removal Processes, there are a few ways that a presidency can end prematurely.  When that happens, the Vice President assumes the role of President, and under the powers granted to them under the Second Section of the Twenty Fifth Amendment, they are allowed to nominate their choice for Vice President.  This happened when Gerald Ford assumed the presidency following Richard Nixon’s resignation.

But, how far does the chain of succession go?  What if there were a situation where multiple people died at once, or were removed from office?  What happens then?

In that case, it goes down the line to then person in the chain.

Following the President and Vice President, the Speaker of the House is third in line. The Speaker is the elected head of the House of Representatives.  That position is currently held by Paul Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin.

After them, it’s the President pro tempore of the Senate.  This position is an honorary one, awarded to the Senator who has served the longest in the Senate.  Currently, that position is held by Orrin Hatch, Republican of Utah.

If, by some chance, all four of these people are unable to assume the presidency, or turn it down, the chain of succession goes through the Cabinet, by order that the position was created, starting with Secretary of State, Treasury, Defense, Attorney General (the original four positions from Washington’s first Cabinet), then through the rest of the positions, in the order that they were added.


Below is a list of those positions, those mentioned above and the Cabinet positions, along with who is in the position, and their party affiliation, if available.  OPEN represents that the position is not currently filled, or has an acting head who has not yet been confirmed by the Senate.

  1. President Donald Trump (R)
  2. Vice President Mike Pence (R)
  3. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R)
  4. President pro tempore Orrin Hatch (R)
  5. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (R)
  6. Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin (R)
  7. Secretary of Defense James Mattis (I)
  8. Attorney General Jeff Sessions (R)
  9. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke (R)
  10. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Purdue (R)
  11. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross (R)
  12. Secretary of Labor Alex Acosta (R)
  13. Secretary of Health and Human Services OPEN
  14. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson (R)
  15. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao (R) NOT ELIGIBLE FOR PRESIDENT
  16. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry
  17. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos
  18. Secretary of Veterans Affairs David Shulkin (I)
  19. Secretary of Homeland Security OPEN

If, and I mean IF, by some infinitesimal chance that everyone in the list above is not able to assume the office of President, then the chain would go through Congress, in order of the leadership bodies first (Majority Leaders, Minority Leaders, Majority Whip, etc.), then through each person in order of their tenure in office.


I’m not talking about the ABC show with Keifer Sutherland, but the idea that the show is based off of.

Before any joint session of Congress where the President, Vice President, and Cabinet get together, one member of the Cabinet is chosen to spend the event in a bunker somewhere.  They’re taken to a non-disclosed, secure location, where they’re kept under guard.  This is in case the unthinkable happens.

In case the Capitol is attacked, and everyone inside is killed.

If that were to happen, then the Designated Survivor would be sworn in as President, and they would be tasked with restaffing and rebuilding the government.


It’s important to understand how things work, especially the government.  If something falls apart, we need to know how it can be fixed.

Really?  Ok, here’s why…

We are in uncharted waters with the Russian Investigation.  I’ve written many times about how many people are tied up with Russia, or have their own looming legal troubles.  There is an above zero percent chance that multiple people in the chain of succession could be indicted at once.

Here’s the list again, along with why they might not be able to, or interested in, taking the presidency.

  1. President Donald Trump (R) – Russia, RICO, Obstruction Investigations
  2. Vice President Mike Pence (R) – Russia and Flynn
  3. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R) – Russia, Money laundering at RNC
  4. President pro tempore Orrin Hatch (R) – Clean, but REALLY OLD
  5. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (R) – NY Fraud Investigations, Russia
  6. Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin (R) – Abuse of Public Trust, Taxpayer Funded Trips
  7. Secretary of Defense James Mattis (I)
  8. Attorney General Jeff Sessions (R) – Russia
  9. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke (R) – Abuse of Public Trust, Taxpayer Funded Trips
  10. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Purdue (R)
  11. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross (R) – Russia, tied to Putin family in Paradise Papers, Money Laundering ties with Paul Manafort
  12. Secretary of Labor Alex Acosta (R)
  13. Secretary of Health and Human Services OPEN
  14. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson (R)
  15. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao (R) NOT ELIGIBLE FOR PRESIDENT – Immigrants are not eligible for the Presidency.
  16. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry – Abuse of Public Trust, Taxpayer Funded Trips
  17. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos – Russia.
  18. Secretary of Veterans Affairs David Shulkin (I) – Abuse of Public Trust, Taxpayer Funded Trips
  19. Secretary of Homeland Security OPEN

The craziest of the rumors I’ve heard have Trump, Pence, and Ryan all being indicted and/or removed from office at once.  If that happens, then Orrin Hatch would be the next in line, but he’s 83 years old, has hinted at retirement, and reportedly might have dementia or Alzheimer’s.  After him, the next clean person in the list is Jim Mattis, Secretary of Defense.

Is it likely that we end up with President Jim Mattis?  No.  It’s not impossible, but highly unlikely.  This is one of those crazy scenarios that just isn’t likely to happen.  Then again, I said the same thing about Trump becoming President.


There is one other part to keep in mind.  Remember when I said earlier that if the Vice President becomes the President, they get to choose their own Vice President?

That could come in to play, and could be used to elevate someone up the chain, especially if there is some kind of Quid Pro Quo in place to provide a stable transition of power.

Let’s face it, Mike Pence is likely to become the 46th President of the United States, and it will happen before 2020.  If it has to happen, I’d rather it happen late next year.  Under the 22nd Amendment, if a Vice President serves more than half of their predecessors term, they can only run for election once.  If they serve less than two years of a term, then they could run for two terms.  If it’s late enough in the year, he won’t be able to cause too much harm, and will be stuck in his own legal quagmire with Russia.

Assuming Mike Pence comes to power, he would get to choose his own Vice President, pending approval of both houses of Congress.  One of the rumors I’ve heard would have him choosing a “safe” choice that would serve as a place holder while he’s going through his own legal mess.  Someone who’s integrity isn’t under question, and knows the lay of the land.

And that’s how we could possibly end up with President James Mattis.

Indictment Eve

I’m writing this on Sunday, October 29th, 2017, at around 8pm EST.

On a Sunday Night.

Normally, on Sunday Night, I would write about one of the hundred or so ideas I’ve got on the list, like about the red herring of voter fraud or life in the echo chamber, but tonight is different.

On Friday, just as I was wrapping up the Daily Check-In 10/27/2017, news came that indictments were coming in from Mueller’s team, and could be executed as early as Monday.

That’s tomorrow.

Tonight is the night before indictments could be served.  Indictment Eve.

Quick refresher:  an indictment is when a Grand Jury returns a recommendation that there is probable cause that a crime was committed.  This recommendation is then given to the prosecutor of the case, usually a District Attorney or Assistant DA, and they’ll coordinate either with Law Enforcement to arrest the target of the indictment, or work with the target themselves to broker a deal, like a plea bargain or become a witness in a larger crime.

There are indictments, as a direct result of the Russian Investigation.

But what’s going to happen?  Let me run through a few ideas, about what I think will happen, what won’t happen, and why things are about to get really fucking weird.


I don’t think this will actually be the case, but I’ve gotten used to disappointment in my life.  When my hopes get raised, they have a bad habit of getting crushed.

I’m afraid that this could be a repeat of the Dan Rather Disinformation Op that ended his career at CBS.  He had a sure-fire story about how George W. Bush abused the system to avoid going to combat in Vietnam, but it turned out that the story he ran with was a fake.  That fake killed any and all chances of anyone else reporting on W’s Vietnam history, even though there was a legit story there.


There’s been talk for months about Paul Manafort being indicted, and Mike Flynn was the first name to get everything going with his Turkish and Russian connections.  Roger Stone completely lost his shit on Twitter this weekend, resulting in a ban, and Carter Page is the Sheldon Cooper of treason.

In a traditional investigation, arrests would be made of the small fish, and they would be turned to get the bigger fish.  While those names are some pretty big fish, they are bass.  Mueller wants a whale.


Notice what I said in that last paragraph, “In a traditional investigation.”  This is nowhere near traditional.  There is a good chance that Donald Trump will try to pardon those around him, try to pardon himself, and fire the team bringing the indictments.

One way to prevent those from happening is to indict Donald Trump right off the bat for Obstruction of Justice.  Multiple indictments can be unsealed at different times, but there’s more than enough evidence, just from Open Source Intelligence (OSINT, think the press and what can be Googled), to bring Obstruction charges against him.

Doing this would not only tie his tiny little hands on using pardons, and give Congress a reason to bring Impeachment charges immediately, but any actions taken to fire Mueller would be immediately seen as criminal.


Louise Mensch has a great write-up on many of the actors involved, and what they’re being investigated for.  And that’s not even a complete list of all the rumors, whispers, and stories that have floated around that I’ve seen over the last several months.  That’s not including staff members who are in hot water like Hope Hicks, Sean Spicer, Sarah Huckabee-Sanders, or Wilbur Ross, or half the cabinet members who are up to their necks in their own scandals.

Serving indictments to the President, VP, SecState, SecTreasury, Speaker of the House, Senate Majority Leader, two White House staffers that are children of the President, and several staffers and support personnel at once would be completely unprecedented.

Then again, so is a person winning the Presidency with the help of the Russians.


If anyone takes any unexpected trips or travels this week, Like Jared Kushner taking an unannounced trip to Saudi Arabia, should have an eye kept on it.  Might be nothing, but then again, it’s Indictment Eve.  The night of the year when emergency trips are made, passports are frozen, and warrants for arrest are made to people leaving their families behind.

I wouldn’t be surprised if there is an early morning raid on Monday.  This whole investigation has looked like a crime family going down, not like a bunch of bank executives going down for embezzlement.  @lauferlaw and @Alt_Spicerlies brought this idea up a few moments ago, and the more I think about it, the more it makes sense.  Scooter Libby didn’t get a perp walk, and most of the people arrested in Watergate were given the chance to turn themselves in.  I doubt that same courtesy will be given to most of the members from Team Trump.

Also, here’s my weirdest prediction for this whole affair.  Someone, I’m not sure but I’m thinking Carter Page or one of Pence’s staffers, will pull an will pull an R. Budd Dwyer at a press conference, and it won’t even be the craziest thing that happens that day.

Don’t be surprised if this whole thing spreads across all of Washington.  People all over the place are going down.  2017 has been pretty fucking weird so far, and the people I mentioned above inferred that others might be implicated that we never heard of, especially some Democrats in power.

Finally, expect Trump to try to fire Mueller in some kind of Hail Mary move to save his ass.  And it expect it to fail.  There are two ways he can try this.  The first would be to fire Jeff Sessions as Attorney General, Rod Rosenstein as Deputy Attorney General, Dana Boente, and all the way down to Rachel Brand, or further if she won’t fire Mueller.  The second way would be to fire Jeff Sessions, and immediately try naming a current member of the Cabinet to replace him, bypassing the Senate confirmation process.  I highlighted that here in Lateral Movement, but I don’t think it would work.  Any chance that Trump has of even trying this end around has to be done before the indictments are served.  Any actions taken after Monday Morning will likely be interpreted as criminal.

This is a nation of laws, not of men, or wealth, or personality.  Laws and Justice.  There’s a phrase that I heard a while back, Fiat Justitia Ruat Caellum.  It’s Latin for “Let Justice Be Done, Though the Heavens Fall.”

Sounds like someone’s yelling “TIMBER!”


Good night, sleep tight.  Take a deep breath, things are about to get really fucking weird.

Drip, Drip, Drip

This article is a little change of pace from the normal daily posts, and jumps into the realm of speculation. I’m going to answer a question I’ve seen on Reddit and Twitter several times since this whole mess started.

“If it’s as bad as they’ve said it is, and the spooks knew, why are we just getting a piece or two at a time?”

The first part refers to the theft, espionage, and treason committed by Donald Trump, his staff, campaign, and the Republican Party.

Spooks in that sentence refers to spies, like the CIA, NSA, MI6, FVEY, and every other country in the world.

The last part is about the steady pulse of information and stories coming out about the investigation, like a faucet dripping.

To answer this question, I’d like to War Game out what I think could have happened had we gotten the whole story at once.

For this exercise, just like in Geometry class, we need to state our assumptions.


  • At least 70% of the rumors are true. Trump, his staff, family, and Campaign committed election fraud, espionage, and treason with the Russians reporting to Vladimir Putin.
  • The Right Wing Media, including Fox News, Breitbart, Daily Caller, snd InfoWars, knowingly spread propaganda originating from Russia.
  • Russian money was laundered to the Republican National Committee, and that the leaders of the Party assisted in those matters.
  • Social Media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit not only let Russians use their platforms to spread propaganda and influence the election, but those platforms profited from it.
  • Intelligence organizations the world wide knew all of the above.
  • All of the events up to the election are the same.
  • All events in this War Game are based off of a quick strike hypothesis, in which the Obama government moves fast after the election.
  • Following Murphy’s Law, several things go wrong. Horrifically wrong, and at the worst time.


November 8, 2016

Election Day. Even though Donald Trump loses the popular vote by more than 3 million votes, he squeezes out a minuscule margin in three key states to win enough presumptive votes in the electoral college to become the assumed President-Elect.

November 9, 2016

While the MSM starts asking what went wrong, President Obama meets with the National Security Council. They know what they know, and have three choices. They can either act swiftly to stop Trump from becoming President, let jurisprudence take its toll, or let our allies handle Trump.

This is where the War Game diverges from the regular timeline. In this War Game, Obama chooses to remove the Trump threat immediately. Operation: Bystro (fast in Russian) is authorized. Donald Trump will be arrested right away, along with his family members, staff members, Vice President-Elect Mike Pence, Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan, Jason Chaffetz, several Russians involved that live in the United States, and several people at Fox News like Sean Hannity and Rupert Murdoch, as well as people at Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, Breitbart, and other websites. On top of these arrests, several media outlets would close to control panic and the narrative.

It’s decided that since most of the principals will be in Washington the next day, the move will be made when Trump visits the White House.

Several people question the timing of implementing this plan so quickly. If one piece of the operation misses the window, then there could be a disaster.

Still, the administration presses on with Operation: Bystro.

November 10

Trump meets with Obama in the White House. Everything seems like normal, until senior FBI officials walk into the meeting, joined by the head of the Secret Service. The SS Agents are confused as the FBI officials make their way to Trump and arrest him for a whole slew of charges, including espionage.

Across town, Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell are picked up from a meeting they were attending. Jeff Sessions is arrested at his office.

In New York, Don Jr. and Eric are in Trump Tower with their families. Paul Manafort is downstairs in his suite.

A ruckus is raised outside as a squad of FBI agents roll up to the building.

Across town, the Fox News HQ is about to get some unexpected visitors.

The plan has kicked off, and not even a half hour in, the first SNAFU occurs. One of Rudy Giuliani’s moles finds out about the plan and informs Rudy, right before being rounded up. Rudy calls a producer at Fox News just minutes before the FBI gets there and breaks the story that Donald Trump has been arrested, and that the rest of the family, and his staff, are wanted. Rudy hops in his car and leaves his place, moments before the G-Men get there.

As Fox News is breaking this story, they go dark. In mid-sentence, they go dark.

Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit are visited by FBI Agents in San Francisco. Their presence is tweeted and retweeted millions of times that day. The three biggest social media sites start acting a little wonky, then go silent.

The White House announces that they will hold a press briefing at 15:00 EST, followed that evening by a national address by President Obama.

Jared and Ivanka are airborne at the time, but they’re alerted to these developments by Rudy. They instruct the pilot to get out of American air space as quickly as possible. The pilot complies.

Mike Flynn and his son are also arrested in New York.

The next disaster of the day occurs at Don Jr.’s arrest. One of his bodyguards opens fire on the FBI agents, and is killed.

Carter Page, thinking he’s some kind of hero, greets the agents coming to arrest him with a shotgun. One agent is hurt, but not killed. Carter is killed in response.

At 15:00, the White House releases a statement, saying that neither the President nor President-Elect will be available for a press statement, and that President Obama will address the nation that night.

As this is going on, a lone reporter from the Washington Post gets a shot of Donald Trump and some of his cronies being escorted into the back of a van, and he’s wearing handcuffs.

Rudy Giuliani is stopped at a traffic stop a trying to get out of New York City. As the NYPD stops him, the FBI show up to apprehend him. This turns into a stand-off between the two law enforcement agencies. A minor scuffle breaks out between them, until senior officers from both sides show up to calm everyone down. They reach an agreement. Rudy will be allowed to be taken home, but he will be under house arrest until the morning, when he’ll be taken out of town.

Jared and Ivanka’s plane deviates from its flight path, and heads for the Caribbean. Air traffic controllers are confused by this move. Eventually, someone from the USIC informs them that the plane is full of fugitives. F-16’s are scrambled from Florida to intercept, but the plane is already within Cuban air space.

In the evening, news of Trump’s arrest hits the news, along with everything going on at Fox News, Facebook, and Twitter. Several people are seen leaving Fox News HQ under arrest, including Sean Hannity.

At night, President Obama addresses the nation. He announces that Donald Trump had been arrested for election fraud, money laundering, RICO, and espionage. He also goes on to indicate that the Russian Government had helped Trump steal the election, and that while they were still investigating whether actual votes were changed, he does admit that voting rolls were hacked, which caused millions of voters to be denied the right to vote. The nation is an in unprecedented constitutional crisis, but America will prevail.


The country is dazed as, over the next couple weeks, more and more information comes out about the depths Donald Trump sunk to in order to win the presidency.

The government is shaken, as many members of the House and Senate were arrested for accepting campaign funds from Russia.

Right Wing Media doesn’t know how to react. On the one hand, Trump committed treason. On the other hand, screw Obama and Clinton. Many of the websites, like Breitbart and InfoWars, lose their hosting, but soon come back with Russian domains.

Twitter and Facebook return to semi-normal operations. Fox News remains off the air, as their role in spreading propaganda comes to light.

Alex Jones dies in a standoff with police executing an arrest warrant. After shooting at the police and killing two officers, he eventually takes his own life via shotgun haircut.


Tensions are running high. Protests on both sides get ugly across the country. Violence occurs at one rally in Minneapolis, where Trump supporters attacked HRC supporters that were protesting a recent attack on a mosque. At least once a week, there’s an attack from one side or the other.

Jared and Ivanka show up on Breitbart Russia. They talk about being harassed on the run, and of their heroic escape from Cuba to El Salvador to China to Russia. This is completely made up, but Trump’s supporters eat it up with a spoon. They call on “true patriots to do what must be done.”

DECEMBER 19, 2016

The Electoral College, after being given a classified briefing on the election, vote in favor of Hilary Clinton to become the 45th President of the United States of America. She wins in considerable fashion, pulling in over 350 votes. Out of the remainder, about 40 of them still voted for Donald Trump, 100 abstained, and the rest split between John Kasich, Marco Rubio, and Ted Cruz. Tim Kaine becomes the Vice President.


Tensions continue to rise throughout the country. Small bands of Trump supporters take up the call to “do what must be done.” Fringe groups on the right and left join together to take a stand against government tyranny.

JANUARY 3, 2017

In the most bizarre Congressional session in history, the Senate convenes and refuses to certify the previous election or the Electoral College counts. This standoff ends with a compromise. HRC will name several key members of the Republican Party to her cabinet, as well as offer amnesty to low-level Republican members of Congress that didn’t knowingly accept money from Russia or aid Trump, in exchange for certifying the election results. Clinton and Obama agree.

JANUARY 20, 2017

Hilary Clinton is sworn in as POTUS. Throughout the day, riots break out across the country. Protests and counter-protests turn violent.

From Russia, the cries for violence and revenge grow louder.


The first series of coordinated attacks takes place in Portland, OR, as white supremacists attack several mosques, temples, and synagogues in a 72 hour period. Similar attacks occur in South Carolina, Alabama, and Pennsylvania.

MARCH 6, 2017

Following repeated calls from Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump through Russian sponsored Breitbart, an assassination attempt is made on HRC. She escapes injured, but lives. The assassin was a male follower of the Alt-Right.


The first trials begin in the espionage saga of United States vs Trump. Many staffers turn state evidence to implicate their bosses.

Michael Flynn is found guilty of espionage and sentenced to death.

Paul Manafort is found guilty of many crimes, and is sentenced to a very long stay in Federal prison, pending extradition to Ukraine.

Steve Bannon kills himself in prison awaiting trial.

JUNE 15, 2017

Another assassination attempt is made at Hilary Clinton, but this time she’s not so lucky. She was shot by a young woman who at first was a supporter of Bernie Sanders, but eventually joined Team Trump. This woman will turn out to be a Russian agent provocateur. HRC is shot three times, and spends two weeks in a coma. Tim Kaine becomes the Acting President.

JUNE 30, 2017

HRC is pulled off of life support and dies. Tim Kaine is sworn in as the 46th President of the United States.


Nothing happens in the Congress as half of the House is in legal limbo, awaiting trial for election fraud and campaign finance violations. The Senate is in shambles as well.

Violence spreads across the country, with organized paramilitary groups openly taking part in armed attacks against government officials and buildings. The worst of these attacks takes place in Idaho, where the Governor called in the State Militia to try to keep the peace. It turned into a massacre as State Militia, US Military, and Armed Civilians attacked each other in Boise.

Evidence comes to light that Russia was behind not only Clinton’s assassination, but also the attacks in Boise and elsewhere. Relations with Russia reach an all-time low.

Tim Kaine, in an attempt at trying to heal wounds, nominates Lindsay Graham of South Carolina to be his Vice President.

By the end of Summer, there are an average of 30 Americans killed per week in acts of domestic terrorism. That number only increases as pressure on Russia increases and Trump’s trial gets closer.


If we were given all of the information at once, and if the authorities had acted at once, we would be in the middle of a civil war right now.

Some Americans could handle the truth, some of us were paying attention as this unfolded, but most people couldn’t handle it.

Had this unfolded, we’d call it a coup if it took place anywhere else. And rightly so.

This is why we’re getting all of this one piece at a time, like Johnny Cash’s Cadillac.

Thank you, and have a good one.

The Changing Narrative

Sometimes, the hardest part of writing this site isn't getting started, but deciding what to write.

At this stage, I have about a hundred articles I'd like to write. Almost all of these will be written eventually, but that will take some time, and will need a system. Voter rolls, propaganda, and a post about why I especially hate Corey Lewandowski are incoming, but today, I want to talk about the changing narrative of the news.

One of the reasons I started this site was to explain what's going on and what's changing as time goes on. It's easy to get lost in the cacophony of the everyday news, and lose track of how we got where we are. But it is hard to keep up with the changing narrative.

That's what I'd to talk about today – the changing narrative in the news, and where I think it's headed.

Earlier this weekend, Fox News ran an article asking "Who cares if the Trump Campaign did anything illegal?" That's quite a turnaround from "There was no collusion" even a couple months ago.

Rumors about the Trump Campaign working with the Russians to sway, or possibly steal the election started back late in 2016. There were some weird moments here and there, but nothing concrete. Personally, I think the weirdest was the time he read Russian propaganda at a campaign rally. This should have been a much bigger story than it was, but it wasn't even the Disaster-du-jour. This, and other tell-tale signs of Russian interference were lost by the MSM.

After the election, the talk about the Russians died down somewhat in the MSM while they chased after the Trump Transition Team. Meanwhile, the Rumor Mill was up and running. More and more details came out regarding connections and meetings. Then, 2 big things happened; increased sanctions on Russia and the Steele Dossier.

The sanctions definitely pulled the attention of the MSM. Tightening banking restrictions on the Oligarchs and expelling diplomats is something they could get their minds around and prove. The Steele Dossier, that was a little harder to fathom. When Buzzfeed released the story broke in January, the Rumor Mill dug deep into it.

In January, as Trump took office, the MSM was still giving him a chance, while the Rumor Mill was picking up steam, getting info that the FBI was investigating the campaign. The Right Wing Media (RWM) claimed this was the Democrats being sore losers.

When details about Michael Flynn came out, the MSM was still behind on ball on collusion, but was catching up to the Rumor Mill. For their part, they were already talking about Counterintelligence Investigations and FISA warrants. The RWM claimed the actions against Flynn were a witch hunt.

If I had to pick one moment that changed the discussion across the board and changed the narrative, it was March 4 when Donald Trump claimed that Obama had tapped his phones in a crazy early morning tweet. This spurred the House Permanent Select Intelligence Committee to hold a hearing with FBI Director Jim Comey to dig into these claims. This backfired spectacularly. Not only did Comey not confirm Trump's accusations of illegal wiretapping, but Jim Comey, then Director of the FBI, had confirmed that an investigation had been ongoing into the Trump Campaign's activities and connections with the Russian Government. Hole. Lee. Shit. The MSM dug into the collusion argument. The Rumor Mill was already taking about grand juries being impaneled. The RWM decried this as bubkus.

The next change in the narrative came after Devin Nunes' Midnight Ride. I'll go into detail about that later, but two talking points came out of this: Unmasking and FISA 702. The MSM continued digging into more meetings between Trump's campaign and the Russians. The Rumor Mill doubled down on grand juries and more details. The RWM talked about Susan Rice "illegally" ordering unmasking.

Jim Comey was fired in Mid-May. The word of the day now became Obstruction of Justice. As details leaked, it became obvious that something was rotten in Denmark. When Robert Mueller was named as the Special Counselor a week later, things seemed to settle down, for a moment. Everyone, including the RWM, agreed with the Mueller announcement.

That was, until, news came out that Jared Kushner met with the Russians in Trump Tower, and that the FBI was interested. From late May to early June, the MSM narrative changed from "was there collusion?" to "how much?" The Rumor Mill was a few weeks ahead, talking about details of meetings that were forthcoming and how New York was advancing with their RICO investigation into Trump. The RWM, for the first time, stopped denying that collusion took place and started asking "is collusion illegal?"

More and more details have come out since, but once everyone lawyered up, things got interesting. I also noticed a pattern in Trump's tweets and the stories coming from the RWM. If Trump tweeted "FAKE NEWS" in all caps, and mentioned a news outlet by name, expect that organization to release a bombshell soon. The more vicious the attack, the worse the news would be for Trump. It's almost like he's rage tweeting after they reached out to him for comment.

There's been one exception to this has been "the big one" that the Rumor Mill claims is being delayed on purpose, by request from Robert Mueller.

Following Don Jr.'s email release, the MSM narrative changed from questioning whether there was collusion to now accepting, beyond a shadow of a doubt that something illicit happened. Even the RWM can no longer deny that something stinks.

In a span of 6 months, we went from "there was no collusion" to "so what if he broke the law?" Just 6 months.

So, where do we go from here?

The MSM will continue to follow the breadcrumbs and lead to more, worse details, leading all the way to an argument about the definition of treason. Plus, New York has something to say.

The RWM will continue swinging wild, calling for Robert Mueller's firing, hoping that will end the investigation. (Spoiler: it won't.)

The Rumor Mill is pulling on some dark threads. They're digging in to the specifics of how the election was stolen, and how much Vice President Pence knew, and when. There are rumblings that New York and California are investigating money laundering, embezzlement, and human trafficking. As always, I advise taking all of this with a grain of salt.