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More than the news media, more than Democratic wins in the midterms, more than his wife making him look – in his own words, according to a source – like a bossed around husband; what seems to bother President Donald Trump the most is the Russia investigation.

In his latest Twitter tirade he has let fly with lines like “a total mess,” “absolutely nuts,” “horribly threatening,” and “a disgrace.” He calls the people behind the investigation “Angry People,” and of course he dismisses it all – as is his custom – as “A TOTAL WITCH HUNT LIKE NO OTHER IN AMERICAN HISTORY.”

All this fury appears to be flowing in response to his legal team’s review of questions from special counsel Robert Mueller. Judging from the reaction, the president must not like what he is seeing.   

Of course, who knows? It’s been this way from the start. He scoffs at the fact Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe has already produced a cascade of indictments and plea deals. He barks at reporters who dare ask his thoughts on the matter. And he repeats the word “no collusion” like a meditation mantra.

 

Which begs the question: If there is nothing to find – no proof of wrongdoing, no skeletons in the closet, no secret mazurkas in Trump Tower – then why does he care so much? Maybe he thinks Washington is so irrevocably corrupt, his alleged innocence does not matter; the longer this goes on, the more likely it is that his political foes will find a way to bring him down. Maybe he’s worried, even if he can personally escape any potential snare, some of his closest confidants will not.  

Based on his past performance, there is even an armchair psychologist’s argument for the notion that he simply cannot stand the idea of anyone, anywhere, anytime having power over him. (Welcome to the working week, Mr. President.)

But here is the thing: the more Trump fans the flames of the Russia probe, the more he makes it look like there is smoke all around. That spurs on his critics, and frankly makes it harder for even his allies to insist there is no fire to be found.   

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