You can't make this sh*t up.
Regarding the just reported statement by Trump's close ally, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, which was first denied and then, when the audio came out, explained as a joke, let me cite journalist Michael Kinsey:
"A gaffe is when a politician tells the truth -- some obvious truth he isn't supposed to say."
In today's political landscape, the most common way of explaining away a true statement that wasn't supposed to be said or heard is to call it a joke. For instance, when Trump, with all sincerity, asked Russia to intervene in the election, he later explained he was joking
The McCarthy quip, which he denied saying, is now being described as a joke, was reported by the Washinton Post, which had obtained copies of the audio.
"There's two people I think Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump," McCarthy (R-Calif.) said, according to a recording of the June 15, 2016, exchange, which was listened to and verified by The Washington Post. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher is a Californian Republican known in Congress as a fervent defender of Putin and Russia.
House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) immediately interjected, stopping the conversation from further exploring McCarthy's assertion, and swore the Republicans present to secrecy. News had just broken the day before in The Washington Post that Russian government hackers had penetrated the computer network of the Democratic National Committee, prompting McCarthy to shift the conversation from Russian meddling in Europe to events closer to home.
Some of the lawmakers laughed at McCarthy's comment. Then McCarthy quickly added: "Swear to God."
Ryan instructed his Republican lieutenants to keep the conversation private, saying: "No leaks. . . . This is how we know we're a real family here."
The remarks remained secret for nearly a year."
We are reminded that in days of yore, the only truths that could be uttered were by the court jester, masked as humor.
I wish to put this comment into the larger context of the growing movement by REPUBLICANS to undermine President Trump in an effort to force him out of office and remove the threat he poses to their losing control of the Congress in 2018 and the Presidency in 2020.
After my previous article Trump and Pence, "Birds of a Feather or Epic Cockfight", are you Ready for the logic of by which it will be the Republicans who remove Trump to save their own chances of re-election? And it will be the Democrats who must keep Trump in office, even if during a long impeachment process, in order to win by running against him. In that article, I cited the fact that Trump's own appointees were publicly sabotaging him by asserting that the evidence showed that Russia had intervened to help elect him.
Those making such public claims were the Secy of State Tillerson, Secy of Defense Mattis, CIA chief Pompeo, and UN Ambassador Haley. All of them also agreed, in total contradiction to their boss, that Russia was our most "serious threat."