Special Counsel Robert Mueller made sure that October 30th was perhaps the first Monday that many of us had anxiously awaited.
His choice to release the indictments of Manafort and Gates was already dominating the news cycle when the surprise announcement that a Trump campaigner, George Papadoulos, had already entered into a plea deal with Mueller dwarfed the earlier news.
More importantly: Papadoulos is directly germane to the Russia investigation as his charge and plea relate to lying to investigators while being questioned about meetings and contacts with Russians, or affiliates of Russia.
But it does telegraph Mueller’s strategy — and the fact that even how and when he releases information is part of a strategy. The clear message here to the American people and Donald Trump was: people are cooperating with the investigation.
The message to those with whom Mueller may already be investigating or plans to question is: PEOPLE ARE COOPERATING (for good reason). Of course the secondary message to is a bit more mysterious, and probably a bit more terrifying, as he is left to wonder what exactly Papadoulos offered in exchanged for the deal.
All of this will make Donald Trump paranoid. Several reports have been released since Indictmentgate which cite unnamed sources confirming that the already tense and chaotic environment of the White House has gone next-level.
One wonders whether this president might follow in the footsteps of Lyndon B Johnson and hold meetings in the bathroom due to a combination of paranoia and nervous tummy.