Collusion Between Trump and the Russians? No Crime Unless It Involved Hacking

So what if there was collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government?  Is that a crime, as everyone seems to assume? According to Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz, “collusion” between the Russian government and President Trump and/or his campaign is not a crime, unless the collusion involved the act of hacking itself.  Pretty startling, right?  And based on the public record as it now stands, there is no evidence of collusion between the campaign and the Russians involving the act of hacking.  No aiding or abetting by the Trump campaign in the hack attacks.  Without other evidence, there’s simply no crime here.  Let’s look a little further at Professor Dershowitz’s analysis. Continue reading “Collusion Between Trump and the Russians? No Crime Unless It Involved Hacking”

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The Donald Trump Criminal Theory? Donald Trump the Fool

Is Trump the fool?  There really are only two possibilities regarding President Trump.  Maybe he’s a liar and a criminal.  Did he collude with the Russian government in the 2016 election?  If he did, that could never be fully hidden, and crime after crime would inevitably ensue.  The whole thing would inevitably blow up.  Would that explain his possibly “asking” former FBI Director Comey to “just let Mike Flynn go?”  Perhaps.  Could that explain his subsequent firing of Comey because the FBI was relentlessly pursuing the collusion thesis?  Or maybe the FBI was just getting too close to the hard proof of collusion (though we doubt Trump would know it)?  Again, perhaps.

But we have an alternative theory.  It’s a simple theory.  Perhaps President Trump is just a fool.  Not even a knave – it’s just Trump the fool.   Continue reading “The Donald Trump Criminal Theory? Donald Trump the Fool”

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Special Prosecutor is Not Needed – Let the FBI Conduct the Investigation

We don’t know with certainty whether the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government during the 2016 election.  And if that collusion existed, we don’t know whether President Trump was directly or indirectly involved.  Perhaps at this point, only he knows (though we doubt it).  But a special prosecutor is not needed yet.  And Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, once again, places the interests of his political faction above those of the country.    Continue reading “Special Prosecutor is Not Needed – Let the FBI Conduct the Investigation”

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Nunes and Schiff Deserve Each Other – Are There any Grown-Ups in the House?

House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes was irresponsible and wrong. Ranking House Intelligence Committee Democrat Adam Schiff was irresponsible and wrong.  The House Intelligence Committee investigation into possible Russian interference in the presidential election has become a farce. Loyalty to the Committee has been discarded.  Dedication to truth-finding has been jettisoned.  Congressmen Nunes and Schiff deserve each other. Will the grown-ups ever enter the room?

Nunes’ Duty – Kiss It Goodbye

Nunes and Schiff
Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes

No investigation can succeed where “partial disclosures” are made while the investigation is ongoing.  Congressman Schiff is correct. Chairman Nunes owed an absolute duty of loyalty to his committee’s investigation and to preserving the sanctity of that investigation. He was foolish in foregoing the advice of his fellow Republican committee members who urged him to consult with Democrats before going public. An exercise of terrible judgment.

Shame on Nunes for running to his party leader, while ignoring his committee mates, with “breaking news” of conversations legally obtained possibly involving the President and/or his certain of his associates.  We thought Nunes worked for the American people, not CNN or Fox News. No, Congressman Nunes, you did not “have a duty” to tell the President that intelligence reports with his name in them exist.  You have an investigation to conduct.  And you are its leader.

Even if the Congressman had discovered that President Obama had ordered a wiretap of President Trump, Nunes had an absolute obligation to share that information with his committee members, including the ranking Democrat, before he scrambled off to meet with the President. Surely the matter of paramount importance in that instance is the potential criminal conduct of Mr. Obama.  Mr. Trump’s need-to-know of transgressions is clearly secondary.  Mr. Nunes, it appears, has no sense of priorities or propriety.

Schiff’s Duty – Kiss It Goodbye, Too

Nunes and Schiff
Congressman Adam Schiff

Enter Congressman Schiff.  He is equally guilty of violating the sanctity of an on-going intelligence investigation.  Mr. Schiff succumbed to political theater and became an active participant.  He acted with impropriety and irresponsibly.  Mr. Schiff apparently concluded that because the Republican Committee chair acted foolishly and recklessly, he must do the same.  Nunes and Schiff, it turns out, wear the same jacket.

So Congressman Schiff immediately held his own press conference.  Oh sure, he chided Nunes for his lack of professionalism:

The Chairman will need to decide whether he is the chairman of an independent investigation into conduct  . . . or he is going to act as a surrogate of the White House, because he cannot do both. Unfortunately I think the actions of today throw great doubt in the ability of both the Chairman and the Committee to conduct the investigation the way it ought to be conducted.

Well said, Congressman.  But talk is cheap, and we suppose none of those fine words apply to you.  Having thrown down the gauntlet to his compadre Mr. Nunes, Mr. Schiff raced over to Meet the Press to disclose this:

I don’t think it was deliberate on [former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper’s] part, but all I can tell you is reviewing the evidence that I have, I don’t think you can conclude that [there was no evidence of collusion between the Trump team and Russia] at all, far from it.

When asked whether there was circumstantial evidence suggesting collusion, Mr. Schiff said:

Actually, no . . . I can tell you that the case is more than that. And I can’t go into the particulars, but there is more than circumstantial evidence now . . . I will say that there is evidence that is not circumstantial, and is very much worthy of investigation.

Yes, Mr. Schiff, we agree.  It is fine for you to make disclosures.  It’s admirable for you to play the political game.  Please tell us, again and again when you can score a few points, your opinion regarding the quality of evidence received during an on-going investigation.  Take it upon yourself, as well, to speak for the Committee without consulting them.  Who needs an internal Committee debate or a report when you can just fill us in as you see fit.  You are free to disclose that there is evidence that is more than “circumstantial.”  Perhaps you’ll let us know the source of that evidence. Or, even, if it turns out to be unreliable – we assume you’ll put on those track shoes and race over to Meet the Press then, too, right?

Nunes and Schiff – A Perfect Match

Yup, Mr. Schiff, we agree.  We think your actions also “throw great doubt in the ability of . . . the Committee to conduct the investigation the way it ought to be conducted.”  Bet you didn’t confer with your Republican committee mates before you made those comments to Meet the Press.

You are right about Chairman Nunes.  But a good sauce for the goose is a good sauce for the gander, too.

Congressmen Nunes and Schiff – shame on you both for your conduct.  You deserve each other.

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