Trump playing the long game with proposal that would create 'chaos': legal expert

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Donald Trump’s exhortation to Republicans to play hardball with Democrats on a budget deal has less to do with elevating the power of the GOP-dominated House and more to do with his own personal goal to stay out of jail, according to a former assistant U.S. attorney.

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Writing in The Bulwark, Dennis Aftergut suggested the former president is playing with fire by encouraging economic chaos with a possible debt default by encouraging GOP lawmakers to not bend as the clock ticks down.

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While GOP lawmakers are keeping their distance from Trump’s advice that “Republicans should not make a deal on the debt ceiling unless they get everything they want,” Aftergut suggested the former president realized that failure to get a deal done will also weigh heavily on President Joe Biden’s re-election prospects.

With the former president under the dark cloud of multiple state and federal investigations, he needs all the help he can get getting re-elected as Aftergut explained, “You could be excused for thinking he wants a default. He loves chaos.”

Trump has a “purely self-serving reason to seek an economic catastrophe. You don’t need to be a stable genius to know that a bad economy typically hurts the incumbent in a presidential race. And Trump is desperate to get the immunity from prosecution that being elected president would provide him. He’s terrified of what’s coming from Special Counsel Jack Smith. So he’ll apparently nuke the world economy to protect himself.”

The attorney noted that Trump used his Truth Social platform to issue marching orders to his allies in Congress when he hinted at retribution for not following his advice.

“The dynamics of the House Republican Conference—with a small number of the most Trumpy members able to disrupt or end McCarthy’s speakership—make it difficult for McCarthy to give an inch in negotiations, especially now with Trump himself piping in. Which means that the risk that no agreement will be reached is very real,” he wrote before darkly suggesting, “The American people would be nothing but collateral damage to Trump.”

You can read his whole piece here.

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