Exhibit 1: Political hypocrisy, Trump style. How the hell can the lawless, corrupt president in American history present himself as the “Law and Order” candidate? Even for him, that’s a more shameful lie that anyone could expect.
Or is it. Trump has told more than 20,000 lies during his first three-and-a-half years as president. He has broken the law over and over, from ignoring the Hatch Act, to interring with investigations, to enriching himself and practicing overt racism.
He’s a crook.
“Across the executive branch, Mr. Trump and his appointees have flouted long-honored norms and violated laws with relative impunity,” says former national security advisor Susan Rice. “They have succeeded largely because Senate Republicans have sacrificed oversight and accountability on the altar of subservience to this president so long as it preserves their majority control.”
Throughout the Republican National Convention, the president and senior officials blatantly violated the Hatch Act, which prohibits government officials from engaging in political activities on the job. From holding the event on White House grounds with cheering uniformed federal law enforcement officers in attendance, and staging a naturalization ceremony as a campaign event with participants used as unwitting political props, to his secretary of state violating departmental rules by delivering a campaign speech from Jerusalem, Mr. Trump has defiled the presidency for political gain.
Meanwhile, the State Department and numerous federal agencies routinely defy congressional subpoenas. Five departmental watchdogs have been fired for investigating accusations of administration malfeasance, while whistle-blowers like the Purple Heart recipient Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman and his brother have been harassed and denied promotions.
The commander in chief intervenes improperly in military justice, redeeming war criminals at the expense of discipline and unit cohesion. Mr. Trump’s Commerce Department has curtailed the census amid a pandemic in an apparent attempt to undercount poor and minority communities. His crony managers have kneecapped the Post Office to undermine mail-in voting.
Attorney General William Barr coordinated the deployment of federal forces to violently disperse peaceful protesters in Washington. The Department of Homeland Security sent armed forces to Portland, Ore., and other cities over the objections of local officials under the guise of maintaining law and order. Their actions predictably provoked heightened violence.
These abuses of federal authority are so extreme that Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, rightly felt compelled to pledge that the military will play no role in the election or its aftermath.
That’s a former national security advisor’ assessment.
“This isn’t an administration,” write columnist Max Boot. “It’s an ongoing criminal conspiracy.”
“It is entirely fitting that Donald Trump — the least law-abiding president in our history — was renominated at a convention that was itself a seeming cavalcade of crime,” Boot adds. “Trump not only flouted the law but also reveled in doing so. During his acceptance speech, he boasted, “We’re here — they’re not,” and the New York Times reported that Trump “relished the fact that no one could do anything to stop him.”
This is, of course, barely scratching the surface of an administration that should more accurately be described as an ongoing criminal conspiracy. While many of Trump’s awful acts — e.g., confining children in cages or unleashing riot police on peaceful protesters — are merely violations of democratic norms, there is also plentiful evidence of lawbreaking on his part.
The U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York has identified Trump as “Individual-1” in a conspiracy with his attorney Michael Cohen to violate campaign finance laws by secretly paying off two women with whom he allegedly had affairs. Cohen went to prison; Trump, who as president claims immunity from prosecution, wasn’t indicted.
Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III uncovered a great deal more potential illegality. He found 10 instances when Trump might have obstructed justice, and in at least four of those cases he found evidence that Trump’s conduct met all three elements of the obstruction-of-justice statute. Each violation carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. The recent report from the Senate Intelligence Committee suggests that Trump also lied to Mueller when, in written testimony, he claimed not to remember speaking to Roger Stone about WikiLeaks. If he committed perjury, that would subject him to up to five years’ imprisonment.
This is the “Law and Order?” The only way to apply law and order to Donald John Trump should be indictment, conviction and punishment in a dark, dank prison surrounding by the thugs he so admires, employed and appointed as president.
That would be a fitting “tribute” to the criminal man who tried so hard to destroy democracy and America.
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