This story comes with all kinds of caveats, to the point that it’s pretty much only caveats. But first, yes, it’s true—the NYTimes reports that six different Trump aides used private email accounts to discuss White House business. Behold:
The disclosures came a day after news surfaced that Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and adviser, used a private email account to send or receive about 100 work-related emails during the administration’s first seven months. But Mr. Kushner was not alone. Stephen K. Bannon, the former chief White House strategist, and Reince Priebus, the former chief of staff, also occasionally used private email addresses. Other advisers, including Gary D. Cohn and Stephen Miller, sent or received at least a few emails on personal accounts, officials said.
Now for those fun caveats:
1. It’s not even against the law: “But it is not illegal for White House officials to use private email accounts as long as they forward work-related messages to their work accounts so they can be preserved.” Did they do that? Unclear, but Republicans are already in damage-control mode, and the use of private email has already been described as “sporadic.” As in, not Hillary level of storing classified info on private servers. When you consider that Trump can’t be brought down even on blatantly illegal activity (so far), this will not amount to more than a drop in the ocean.
2. “But what about the hypocrisy?” you ask. Always remember this: Conservatives are impervious to being owned by their own logic. Trump supporters won’t stop for one moment to consider that they spent an entire primary campaign bashing Hillary for using private servers, and now the consorts of their chosen messiah are doing the same thing. That would require moral consistency of a kind they no do not possess, and do not wish to possess. Don’t expect any outrage from the right.
So, this is front page news, but it’s the kind that will amount to nothing, especially in the court of public opinion. It’s probably a legal dude, too—unless Mueller gets his hands on some truly incriminating material. Which doesn’t seem likely, but with the level of incompetence displayed in the White House so far, nothing is impossible.