David French: Awful Lot of People Are "Desperate" To Believe Trump/Russia Collusion Is All "Nonsense"

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National Review writer and one-time potential #NeverTrump presidential candidate David French discussed the Mueller investigation with MSNBC's Chuck Todd on Friday's edition of 'MTP Daily.'

"What is president is doing is essentially casting himself as the victim of a Deep State," French said. "When he is, in fact, in charge of the Department of Justice. He can declassify what he wants to declassify. He can order disclosed what he wants ordered disclosed."

"But instead what he is doing is people are saying to him, 'Mr. President this would endanger national security if it's disclosed.' He is not disclosing it, and then using the fact it's not being disclosed as somehow evidence of a conspiracy against him," French said. "It is ridiculous."





"We would be laughing if Putin were pulling the wool over our eyes using RT doing something like this," host Chuck Todd said. "But David, I would argue it's effective right now."

"Who needs RT when you have got Sean Hannity?" French joked. "There are an awful lot of people who are desperate, desperate to believe all of this is a bunch of non-sense."

DAVID FRENCH: The vast majority of Americans don't share the view that it is totally okay to take intel from hostile foreign powers to use in a presidential campaign. So if you do receive information from that power, what they then have over you is information and knowledge that could compromise you. They could disclose that you have worked with them, and that could taint your decision-making.

So, this is just all common sense stuff, but it's sort of being passed off as ridiculous, absurd. You get opposition research from wherever you want to. No. That's not true. That's not what prudent people do.

CHUCK TODD, NBC: That, yes, okay, I think we agree. Common sense. But as you know, it is amazing how the large percentage of folks in this country-- We are not talking about a small fringe. A large percentage of folks here that are believing that there has been just an amazing number of coincidences.

DAVID FRENCH: Well, you know, what's really disingenuous about it is the president by his actions is feeding the Conspiracy Theory Right in a way that I think is extremely deceptive and extremely dangerous. Here's what I mean. The president is doing -- what is president is doing is essentially casting himself as the victim of a Deep State, when he's in fact charge of the Department of Justice. He can declassify what he wants to declassify. He can order disclosed what he wants ordered disclosed.

But instead what he is doing is people are saying to him, 'Mr. President this would endanger national security if it's disclosed.' He is not disclosing it, and then using the fact it's not being disclosed as somehow evidence of a conspiracy against him. It is ridiculous.

CHUCK TODD: We would be laughing at it if Putin would be pulling the wool over our eyes using RT doing something like this. This is what-aboutism and all of this stuff on of the head. But David, I would argue it's effective right now.

DAVID FRENCH: Who needs RT when you have got Sean Hannity?

There are an awful lot of people who are desperate, desperate to believe all of this is a bunch of non-sense. Look, I don't know what's true and what's not. All of us have very partial information right now.

CHUCK TODD: Correct.

DAVID FRENCH: Here's what I do know. Here's what I do know. If the son of a presidential candidate gets a message from -- that is purporting to say, or that actually says, I have information to share with you from the government of Russia about a plan to help Mr. Trump and to help facilitate his election, that it is not right to respond to that with, "I love it."

If somebody does respond with "I love it," what that indicates is at the very least they were enthusiastic about potentially colluding with the Russians. Enthusiastic about it. In the face of evidence like that among many other things we could go into, to then say all this is is a witch-hunt, all this is is non-sense I think strains credulity.

CHUCK TODD: I think this hypothetical is too much of a stretch maybe we shouldn't go there, but I think there is a fear among many that Mueller may have an airtight case, but politically the president has so successfully sort of soiled the political playing field here that he can survive it.

What does that do to the rule of law in the future in that scenario?

DAVID FRENCH: I'll press the panic button on that after I see what Mueller's case is. We don't know what it is. Because I do think that if Mueller has an airtight case in the way some people speculate that he does. Again, I don't know.

CHUCK TODD: Fair enough.

DAVID FRENCH: But if he does have an airtight case, that is going to blow up so many narratives and discredit so many people that what you are going to be left with, I would surmise -- maybe I'm wildly optimistic, is just tiny, tiny hardcore few, kind of like what Nixon was left with at the end of his time. Again that's all rampant speculation because we just don't know.

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