MSNBC’s Chris Matthews said on “Hardball” that testimony by former FBI Director James Comey on Thursday may have served to unravel the key anti-Trump narrative among Democrats that emerged from the 2016 general election. On the program, Matthews said, “The assumption of the critics of the president, of his pursuers, you might say, is that somewhere along the line in the last year is the president had something to do with colluding with the Russians … to affect the election in some way. And yet what came apart this morning was that theory.”
The lifelong Democrat Matthews went on to mention former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, who resigned after being hounded by accusations that he had improperly met with Russian officials before joining the Trump administration. Matthews said, “Flynn wasn’t central to the Russian investigation,” and asked, “where’s the there-there?”
Commenting on The Daily Wire, editor Ben Shapiro wrote:
“But there is no doubt that Comey’s testimony debunked the leading narrative purveyed by the Left since the election. And even Chris Matthews knows it.”
Left-of-center Democrats are increasingly speaking about “obstruction” of the Flynn investigation by Trump. This is even though Comey himself said that the president never tried to shut down the Russian investigation. According to Comey, Trump “directed” him to drop the investigation into Flynn’s unreported phone calls to the Russians, but also admitted that it was not implicit in Trump’s actual language. Comey presented no evidence of any actual crime in the fact that Flynn had discussions with Russians before taking the job as National Security Advisor.
There are Senate Democrats who remain unconvinced. “Having him, under oath, saying he felt he was directed to drop the investigation into the national security adviser, I do think strengthens that case” for obstruction, Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) told reporters. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), stated that Comey had "concluded that the president of the United States intended to obstruct an FBI investigation." Whitehouse added that the former FBI director's testimony also suggested possible "complicity in the president’s improper and obstructive conduct" among other Trump advisers. Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) also suggested that Trump obstructed justice.
Shapiro of The Daily Wire wrote on June 9 that Trump is missing an opportunity to add to the narrative created by Chris Matthews. Shapiro said that the “only narrative that matters” is the “fantasy” that “Hillary Clinton only lost because Trump was working hand-in-glove with Vladimir Putin…” Trump is foolish, Shapiro wrote, for going “toe-to-toe with Comey on the details of their conversations, even though Comey has now testified under oath.” He wrote: “That’s foolish.”