Donald Trump Is Constitutionally Incapable of Telling the Truth

A few weeks ago, the press got wind of the fact that Donald Trump Jr. had met with a Russian attorney early in the 2016 campaign. The Trump brain trust got together to discuss how to respond:

The strategy, the advisers agreed, should be for Donald Trump Jr. to release a statement to get ahead of the story. They wanted to be truthful, so their account couldn’t be repudiated later if the full details emerged.

But within hours, at the president’s direction, the plan changed.

That’s from Ashley Parker, Carol Leonnig, Philip Rucker, and Tom Hamburger of the Washington Post. It might be the greatest lead I’ve read all year. Congratulations to whoever came up with it.

So who was the source for this story? Spicer? Priebus? Someone else? Poor old Donald hasn’t yet figured out that when you treat people badly, they’re likely to treat you badly in return. And government employees sign standard contracts, not the Trump specials that threaten to ruin their lives if they ever say anything bad about him. He might want to think about that.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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