Garland will indict Trump IF …
There is a lot of speculation floating around the politi-sphere on the question of a possible criminal indictment of President Trump by Attorney General Merrick Garland. Democrats are openly frustrated that he has not done so already – or at least launched investigations.
Those on the left – and especially the members of Speaker Pelosi’s one-sided Select Committee – are claiming that there is sufficient evidence for Trump to be convicted on several charges. For months, the Committee has been presenting its 100 percent prosecutorial case for the benefit of a friendly press.
Since the Committee has no power to indict anyone, they are proffering their preconceived opinions in the court-of-public-opinion where fairness, rules-of-evidence, and even the rule-of-law does not exist. It is a fully political process with a political goal – to defeat Republicans in the upcoming 2022 and 2024 elections.
As much as a loyal Democrat Garland may be – and as angry as he may be at Republicans for denying him a seat on the Supreme Court – he is still constrained by the rule-of-law. He must weigh the evidence and the prospect of gaining a conviction. And that is where the rubber hits the road.
After a year and a half of accusations of criminal conduct against Trump by those on the political left – Democrats and the media – and after months of phony “hearings,” there is very little for Garland to deal with in terms of indictable crimes. There may be a few on the periphery for others, but very little to support the prosecutorial accusations of the Select Committee and those in the echo chamber.
Let’s face it. Trump is not a very nice person – in my opinion. Despite many of his administration’s policies that have pleased conservatives and much of the public – and have been good for the nation — the man’s pugnacious and humorless personality has been damaging to the Republican Party and national civility. Most Americans do not want him in the White House in the future (including me). But a personal preference does not constitute criminality. Trump can be accused of bad behavior, but bad behavior is not a crime. That is the distinction Garland has to consider.
So … how much of the political fodder produced by the Select Committee rises to actionable evidence of crimes by Trump or others? What is their hard evidence that would stand up in court? There is a lot less then one might think if they have been taking their information from the grandiose and self-congratulatory statements of the members of the Committee and the regurgitation by the left-leaning media.
Garland faces two challenges. The initial “evidence” must be sufficiently credible to warrant an indictment – and sufficiently credible to convince 12 Americans to convict beyond all reasonable doubt. That becomes a lot tougher when the defense has an opportunity to bring evidence, call witnesses and cross examine the prosecution case.
Garland is far more limited in the witnesses and evidence he can bring into court. Very few of those interviewed by the Committee – and who provided seemingly damning evidence – will never be called by Garland. A lot of it was hearsay testimony – not allowed in a court-of-law. Rumors. Opinions.
All that bad behavior will never be seen in a serious case. The Committee presented Trump’s wanting to go to Capitol Hill – and his alleged confrontation with the security detail – as hard evidence of his intent to commit the crime of sedition. Rumors are not evidence. Some say it did not happen. Some say it did. But in either case, it is not a crime. Some legal nitwits say that placing his hand on the driver’s clavicle is battery. Try to get that one past the laughter.
The claim that Trump was locked away in his White House private dining room watching the events unfold on television and was “gleeful” goes nowhere in a court-of-law. Even if that was irresponsible, it is not criminal – and any testimony that Trump was “gleeful” would be shot down like a clay pigeon as mere opinion.
The fact that a number of family, friends and staffers urged Trump to move more quickly to stop the rioting – and he did not — makes Trump guilty of poor judgment. But that is not a crime.
The big claim is that Trump ordered armed demonstrators to Capitol Hill to violently stop the certification of the Electoral College vote count for the purpose of overthrowing the legitimate government in order to install himself as president-for-life. Nothing the Committee has presented thus far comes even close to proving that case in a court-of-law.
The obsessive Trump haters will not have the free ride in a court of law that they got from that biased Committee. Because it is one-sided, it has no credibility. You can blame that on Pelosi for abusing her power and rejecting specific Republican members of Congress appointed by House Minority Leader McCarthy – and on McCarthy for not assigning legitimate Republicans to the Committee after Pelosi improperly rejected his initial choices. In previous commentaries, I have criticized both for those actions. Regardless, the result is a Committee that is one-sided and biased — and cannot be trusted to produce real evidence.
Now that the midterm election is drawing near, it is less likely that the Department of Justice will announce an investigation of the events of January 6, 2021. While Trump is not on the ballot, a number of others targeted by the Democrats and the media are running for offices in various states.
You can bet that the Select Committee will not be honoring any such tradition. They are likely to hold their highly promoted prosecutorial reality show right up until election day.
At this juncture, I do not believe Garland has enough to prosecute Trump. A few of the secondary players may be in some legal jeopardy over the creation of those fake electors. But for the most part, I expect those on the left to be bitterly disappointed in their Attorney General. But as the saying goes … you cannot make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. And that is what the Pelosi Committee is delivering to Garland.
So, there ‘tis.