Originally published on FoxNews.com.

No one knows how to play Donald Trump better than Nancy Pelosi.

Pelosi once again proved she lives rent-free in Trump’s head last week when the president responded to her remarks that he was conducting a “cover-up.” That one comment led to a 48-hour verbal demolition derby that Pelosi won.

Following Pelosi’s remark, Trump launched a Twitter storm about the Mueller investigation. He followed that with a staged a walk-out from a congressional leadership meeting that included Pelosi.

He went straight from that to a Rose Garden press conference – complete with a sign affixed to the presidential podium proclaiming his innocence – where he stated that unless Congress stops their investigations he won’t work with them.

Pelosi’s response to Trump was to hold her own press conference the next day, baiting him again by stating that Trump:

  • Had a temper tantrum
  • Is conducting a cover-up
  • Is cracking under the pressure
  • Is not in charge
  • Needs an intervention

And that set Trump off. Again.

He proclaimed himself an “extremely stable genius.” Then he held another press conference (using farmers decimated by his tariffs as props) to publicly ask his senior staff about his temperament.This is a staple of dictators like Putin in the Kremlin, not the leader of the free world in the White House.

Then he launched into yet another series of tweets about the Mueller investigation, even retweeting a doctored video of Pelosi to make it look as though she was behaving erratically (she wasn’t).

But, to understand just how much control Pelosi has over Trump, look no further than impeachment.

While Trump careens out of control, Pelosi remains firmly in control. She’s keeping the Democratic caucus in line about impeaching Trump, insisting it will only occur when the evidence is public and the public supports it.

Pelosi is letting members who want to impeach Trump – or who represent districts that do – have their say. She’s letting members who don’t want to impeach Trump – or at least not yet – have their say.

She’s letting the chairs of the committees involved in the investigation of Trump do their jobs. And she’s managed at the same time to lead the House to pass 100 bills in only five months, addressing health care, shoring up ObamaCare, lowering prescription drug prices, gun safety, securing our elections, and more.

Furthermore, when Pelosi states Trump wants impeachment now, she’s right. Trump knows there’s even more damaging information to come – from the 14 cases Mueller referred for criminal prosecution plus one investigation he referred as well.

The sooner impeachment proceedings start, the better it is for Trump politically, before any of the remaining evidence is made public. The Senate is also unlikely to impeach him without further evidence. All of which renders undertaking impeachment now useless – and Pelosi knows it.

As I have said before and will say again: Never underestimate Nancy Pelosi. Ever.

Pelosi is smart to be taking her time, because the more Americans know about the Mueller Report and Trump’s conduct, the more they will support efforts to hold Trump accountable.

That’s what we are starting to see in the polls: the latest CBS poll shows 44 percent of Independents believe Trump should cooperate with the investigations and be held accountable. This is a nine-point increase among the very voters who change elections and who helped Democrats win the House in 2018.

A recent series of court decisions also proves Pelosi’s strategy to take her time is on the mark.

One decision last week provided the Judiciary Committee with Trump’s financial records from TD Bank and Wells Fargo, with Deutsche Bank’s records soon to follow. These records have been sought for months, and Trump has fought to hide them.

Why? Because they could likely provide information as to whom he is in debt, and whether that might be driving his actions as president, rather than what is in America’s best interest.

This release of Trump’s financial records pushed him to his latest act of desperation, one that should concern every American: giving Attorney General William Barr the unilateral and extraordinary authority to declassify intelligence material, rather than allowing the intelligence agencies to do it themselves.

This action was accompanied by Trump railing that there had been a coup attempt against him, and making allegations of treason along the way.

Mind you, the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election started in the spring of 2015 – before Trump announced his campaign for president. It is notable that Trump introduced the use of the words “coup” and “treason,” as it follows a pattern of him pre-emptively defining the debate in ways that help him.

Trump’s executive order proves he is willing to destroy our intelligence assets in a search for his “enemies” that will compromise every U.S. intelligence agency and asset, as well as our national security.

In retrospect, it also explains his visit to the CIA only hours after taking the oath of office in 2017. Trump was delivering a message: you’re either on my team or you’re my enemy.

Trump now sees the CIA and FBI as his enemies and is treating them as such.

Clearly, Trump’s claim that he’s an “extremely stable genius” is betrayed by his behavior. That’s because Trump knows Pelosi controls his fate and has out-maneuvered him at every turn – further fueling his fear. And if Pelosi does end up initiating impeachment proceedings, that will be the end of Trump – and he knows that, too.

As I have said before and will say again: Never underestimate Nancy Pelosi. Ever.

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