So what should we make of this?
Grant opening expressing the idea of removing the man right(Meade) below him. It looks like Meade is dislike by all within the AoP. What better "Fall Guy"? No one will come to Meade defense because no one likes him....
Grant was not going to throw Meade to the wolfs unless he was being pressure from Congress or Lincoln...which never really happen so Meade kept his job.
I think Grant like Meade and thought he was a competent officer but his value to Grant was he was expendable if political pressure was becoming to great..."The Fall Guy"
Grant was talking about removing him over some rebel papers whining about the behavior the the union army...I would not call it a vote of confidence in Meade by Grant...
Something for you all to muse over...
"Grant has great confidence in Meade..." sounds more like Grant is resisting the general feeling...