the national interest

Trump Demotes ‘Excellent’ Consultant George Papadopoulos to ‘Low-Level Volunteer’

Photo: @realdonaldtrump/Instagram

“George Papadopoulos, he’s an energy and oil consultant, excellent guy,” boasted Donald Trump on March 21, 2016. But as frequently happens to the great, excellent, very, very top guys Trump surrounds himself with, Papadopoulos is now turning out to be a total loser who nobody has ever heard of. One Trump mouthpiece calls him a “coffee boy.” “Few people knew the young, low level volunteer named George, who has already proven to be a liar,” Trump now tweets. If Papadopoulos was a woman, he would be ugly, flat-chested, and unmarriageable.

Papadopoulos was not a top adviser to Trump, but he was an adviser, and Robert Mueller’s indictment describes him dealing with Russia on the campaign’s behalf and reporting regularly to high-level campaign officials. And his negotiations entailed yet another channel through which the Trump campaign appeared to be trying to obtain emails Russia had stolen from Trump’s opponents.

It is obviously true that Papadopoulos has now been proven to be a liar: He lied to the FBI about his dealings with Russia on behalf of Trump’s campaign. Trump can go ahead and claim that anything Papadopoulos says about the Trump campaign is also a lie, but legal experts strongly suspect Papadopoulos is probably going to have it on tape. Dismissing him as a lying coffee boy is a good way to get through the next few weeks of cable-news talking points. But it’s not much of a long-term defense strategy.

Trump Demotes ‘Excellent’ Consultant to Low-Level Volunteer