The Left’s defense of Susan Rice (haven’t we seen that phrase written somewhere before???) in the Trump spying case will follow two lines of argument.
One is that Rice, as President Obama’s national security adviser was “simply doing her job” when she began ordering the “unmasking” of, first, Trump campaign officials, then, post-election, Trump transition-team members. It’s not an outlandish defense, considering the wide latitude given intelligence officials like Rice to conduct surveillance.
The other line of defense is the Left’s remarkable capacity to simply ignore behavior that — were it anyone but St. Obama and Friends — would prove unavoidably compelling to anyone with even modest curiosity.
Rice reportedly was asking for reports involving Trump associates as early as last summer, even before he was nominated. Before clamming up (as of the evening of April 4, she hadn’t made a statement), she appears to have lied about what she knew, claiming she knew nothing about information being incidentally collected on Trump transition officials.
No telling where this story goes, if anywhere. ABC and NBC news ran nothing Monday evening on the Rice revelations, while CBS national news issued a cloyingly sympathetic report that seemed prepared by Obama spin-meister Ben Rhodes, noting in the first paragraph that Rice simply needed “to understand the context” in which all these Trump people kept turning up (incidentally!) in all these surveillance reports — none of which, by the way, involved Russians.
Whatever comes of it, one thing that should come of it (in my perfect world) is an abject apology to Rep. Devin Nunes from all the media whose knee-jerk instinct was to mock the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee after he announced having seen documents supporting Trump’s claims to have been spied upon by the Obama administration.
The story line was all about Nunes’ trip to the White House, while mostly indifferent to what Nunes claimed to have found.
The Arizona Republic’s editorial on the subject was a classic of media group-think.
In addition to serving up abject hysteria about “the external threat to the sovereignty of our elections” (I swear!!! Go read it! It’s the very first line! Duping John Podesta into giving up his g-mail password is an existential threat to the sovereignty of our elections!), the editorial smears Nunes with a thick coating of liberal condescension.
“Nunes sent up a smoke screen — and we need to get beyond this kind of distracting political posturing. Way beyond it.”
Well, we’re beyond the smokescreen now. The smoke has lifted and — why look here! — guess who’s behind the smoke:
Susan “It was a spontaneous reaction to a video” Rice, conducting vitally important surveillance of Trump officials from July through December, and making certain their names were known to anyone who looked at the documents.
Which, as former Obama aide Evelyn Farkas noted, included as many people as they could round up.