As we noted late last week, Benjamin Wittes, the Brookings Institution senior fellow and noted ally of former FBI Director James Comey, took to twitter to claim that another “bombshell” story, presumably related to the multiple investigations into whether the Trump camp colluded with the Russians, was in the works. However, unlike previous warnings from Wittes, this one contained a caveat: the “fuse” on the story is of an uncertain length, and that the next salvo could arrive as soon as Monday.
But with no major bombshell forthcoming, Wittes returned to Twitter Monday to offer a few clarifications.
3 things:— Benjamin Wittes (@benjaminwittes) June 26, 2017
1) Not all ticks are related to Comey.
2) Fuse length remains uncertain.
3) Interesting preemptive defense of collusion happening.
Not only did Wittes reiterate that the timing of the next bombshell story remains uncertain, he also offered a few more clues: The, he says, isn’t necessarily related to Comey, who was spotted walking into the New York Times office in Times Square last week.
He also noted that there’s “an interesting preemptive defense of collusion happening," likely referring to comments made on Fox News by Washington DC Managing Editor Brit Hume and a host of other characters.
“Can anybody identify the crime?” Hume asked.
While Wittes messages might appear to be the half-crazed ravings of a defeated liberal, as the Daily Caller pointed out, they should be taken seriously. His previous warnings - tweets of “TICK TICK TICK” - have in the recent past preceded major NYT bombshells, including the May 16 report about the Comey memo and its contents. He tweeted a similar message two days later, before the NYT published a report about Comey wanting to keep his distance from Trump.
tick tick tick tick tick tick— Benjamin Wittes (@benjaminwittes) May 16, 2017
By the twitching of my thumbs,— Benjamin Wittes (@benjaminwittes) May 18, 2017
Something wicked this way comes.
tick tick tick tick tick tick tick
Now please don't read anything into this, but— Benjamin Wittes (@benjaminwittes) June 6, 2017
tick tick tick tick tick tick tick tick tick pic.twitter.com/fc0By0CWqK
To be clear, fuse length on this one is uncertain. Could be today. Could be Monday.— Benjamin Wittes (@benjaminwittes) June 23, 2017
Wittes did it again shortly before the Times published a story alleging Comey asked Attorney General Jeff Sessions not to leave him in the room alone with Trump on June 6. Wittes says he has reviewed Comey-related stories before, and was an on-the-record source for the May 18 piece reported by the NYT’s Michael Schmidt, where he recounted to the NYT reporter that Comey had told him at a lunch meeting that he sought to distance himself from Trump. Comey felt that Trump was attempting to cozy up to Comey in hopes of quashing the ongoing Russia probe.
As for his point about the story not involving Comey, perhaps the Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his team of prosecutorial Democrats have unearthed a new baseless narrative with which to badger the president. Let’s see: We’ve already seen collusion and obstruction – and can only imagine what might be next.
Maybe Trump really did shoot somebody on Fifth Avenue. Only way to find out is to stay tuned...