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1 sentence that explains Donald Trump and the Russia investigation

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(CNN) — The New York Times published a 4,536-word opus on President Donald Trump's two-year-long (and running!) attempt to thwart the multiple investigations into his 2016 presidential campaign and its ties to Russia.

The entire thing is worth reading. It's chock-a-block with news -- like that Trump reportedly asked acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker to install an ally to oversee the Southern District of New York investigation into Michael Cohen!! -- and insights into the world (and White House) of Donald Trump.

But amid all those words, one sentence in the piece stood out to me as deeply important when it comes to thinking about Trump, the investigation and what special counsel Robert Mueller knows.

Here's the sentence:
> "The episode was among the first of multiple ham-handed efforts by the president to carry out a dual strategy: publicly casting the Russia story as an overblown hoax and privately trying to contain the investigation's reach."