GOP Derides Trump Indictment; Treat Trump Like Any Other Low Life Criminal
Republican bootlickers are aghast, utterly gobsmacked and outraged as they warn that the indictment of trump could spell the end of the democratic system, that we as a nation have crossed the Rubicon, but wouldn’t it be nice if they maybe applied the brakes and held their shock and awe until they know the charges.
Trump has continued to beat his drum about the tragedy of it all but the worst reaction, by far, came from that poseur of a Fox commentator, Tucker Carlson, who said the indictment showed it was “probably not the best time to give up your AR-15s.”
We do know that trump was indicted by a grand jury but the charges have yet to be made public. By the way, the grand jury is a group of citizens who hears evidence and votes to indict or not. A trial, if there is a trial, could take a very, very long time. That hasn’t stopped the flood of paranoid rhetoric that is very nearly the same commentary that was heard after trump’s first impeachment, his second impeachment, the investigation into Russian influence on the 2016 election and anything else that even hinted at corruption in the White House.
The situations are different but the reactions are predictably the same.
According to virtually every Republican who has commented, the indictment is an outrageous threat to our democratic process, political persecution, election interference, arresting a presidential candidate on a manufactured basis, irreparable damage to country in an attempt to interfere in our presidential election, weaponization of the legal system to advance a political agenda and distort the legal system, rule of law appears to be suspended, Soviet show trials, banana republic, unprecedented, political persecution, blatant election interference, an attempt to interfere in our Presidential election, George Soros, unprecedented abuse of power and the deep state.
But above all, in the words of trump and all of his sycophants, there is the witchhunt. Two impeachments, political witchhunt; Russia investigation, political witchhunt; Georgia investigation into pressuring officials to illegally create votes for trump, political witchhunt; Mar-a-Lago investigation into troves of secret government documents, political witchhunt; trump’s goading of his supporters to attack the capitol, political witchhunt; Trump University, political witchhunt; inflating the value of trump real estate, political witchhunt; rape of E. Jean Carroll, political witchhunt; lying about payoffs to silence Stormy Daniels, Political witchhunt.
The result of a trial or trials is still very much an unknown, unknown. So what could happen? Trump could be found not guilty on all charges or some charges, trump could plead guilty, trump could be pardoned, trump could go to jail and continue campaigning (it’s happened before with a third party candidate), trump could be sentenced to house arrest, trump could drop out of the race, trump could die.
The toadies have made much of the “unprecedented” indictment of a former president or presidential candidate. That’s not quite factual as in 1920, Eugene V. Debs, the Socialist leader, mounted his fifth bid for the White House from prison, where he was serving a sentence for his opposition to World War I. And while no sitting president has been indicted, President Ulysses S. Grant was fined $20 after he was stopped for speeding down the streets of Washington in his horse-drawn carriage.
Aaron Burr, though not president, was the vice president when he was tried for treason after leaving office and planning to create a new country out of western territories. More recently, let’s not forget Spiro T. Agnew who resigned as vice president after making a plea deal on corruption charges.
Trump supporters point to the irreversible harm the trump indictment will cause the country. But other democracies have been faced with similar crises and somehow survived, their legal system intact.
The list begins with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel who is currently on trial on corruption charges while he remains prime minister.
Other leaders found guilty of crimes include former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert who spent more than a year in prison for bribery, fraud and other charges; former French presidents Nicolas Sarkozy (influence peddling) and Jacques Chirac (embezzlement); Brazil’s President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (money laundering and corruption); Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi was convicted of tax fraud and sentenced to a year of community service; former South Korean President Park Geun-hye (corruption); and former Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian (bribery). Further back in history, but not much further, in the 1980s, Kakuei Tanaka, a former prime minister of Japan, was convicted of bribery.
As far as trump being the first indictment of a former U.S. president, that is true. But you can fill a suitcase with the number of sitting and former members of congress who have been charged and prosecuted for any number of heinous offenses. The bar for justice should not be raised because the defendant is a former president.
This list consists of American politicians convicted of crimes either committed or prosecuted while holding federal office. It includes politicians who were convicted or pleaded guilty and does not include politicians involved in unprosecuted scandals or politicians who have only been arrested or indicted. The list also does not include crimes that occur outside the politician’s tenure unless they specifically stem from acts while they were in office. It does not include convictions which were vacated.
For some perspective, trump’s alleged crimes are just the latest illegalities by federal officials, some worse, some not as bad. This list is long and goes all the way back to 1798, with offenses ranging from bribery to sex crimes and many, many more.
Here they are:
Rep. Matthew Lyon, D-R Party, Ky., was the first Congressman to be recommended for censure after spitting on Rep. Roger Griswold, F-Conn. The censure failed to pass but Lyon was found guilty of violating Alien and Sedition Acts and sentenced to four months in jail, during which time he was re-elected in 1798.
Others convicted of various crimes through the years include Rep. Charles F. Mitchell R-N.Y., 1841; Rep. Robert Smalls, R-S.C., 1877; Sen. Joseph R. Burton, R-Kan., 1904; Sen. John Hipple Mitchell, R-Ore., 1905; Sen. Henry B. Cassel, R-Pa., 1909; Sen. William Lorimer, 1912; Robert W. Archbald (R), Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, 1912; Albert Fall (R), Secretary of the Interior, the first U.S. cabinet member to ever be convicted, 1922; William P. MacCracken Jr. (R), Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Aeronautics, 1934; Rep. John W. Langley, R-Ky., 1926; Rep. Harry E. Rowbottom, R-Ind., 1931; Rep. Michael J. Hogan, R-N.Y., 1935; Rep. George Ernest Foulkes, D-Mich., 1935; Rep. Donald F. Snow, R-Maine, 1935; Rep. John H. Hoeppel, D-Calif., 1936; Rep. James M. Curley, D-Mass., 1947; Rep. Andrew J. May, D-Ky., 1947; Rep. J. Parnell Thomas, R-N.J., 1950; Rep. Walter E. Brehm, R-Ohio, 1951;
Also, Rep. Orland K. Armstrong, R-Miss., 1953; Rep. Ernest K. Bramblett, R-Calif., 1954; Rep. Thomas J. Lane, D-Mass., 1956; Rep. Thomas F. Johnson, D-Md., 1962; Rep. Frank W. Boykin, D-Ala.; 1963; Rep. Daniel Brewster, D-Md., 1969.
In 1972–1973 Republican “bugging” of the Democratic Party National Headquarters at the Watergate Hotel led to a burglary which was discovered. The cover up by President Richard Nixon (R) and his staff resulted in 69 officials being charged and 48 pleading guilty, including seven for burglary. Eventually, Nixon resigned. Those convicted, all Republicans, included Attorney General John N. Mitchell; Attorney General Richard Kleindienst; White House Chief of Staff H. R. Haldeman; John Ehrlichman, former White House Counsel; Egil Krogh, Undersecretary of Transportation; John Dean, White House Counsel; Dwight Chapin, secretary to the President; Herbert W. Kalmbach, Nixon’s personal attorney; Charles Colson, special counsel to the President for public liaison; Vice President Spiro Agnew; Commerce Secretary Maurice Stans.
Also, Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., 1969; Rep. Martin B. McKneally, R-N.Y.; Rep. Cornelius Gallagher, D-N.J., 1972; Rep. J. Irving Whalley, R-Pa., 1973; Rep. Edwin Reinecke, R-Calif., 1973; Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz, R, 1978; Rep. John V. Dowdy, D-Texas, 1973; Rep. Richard T. Hanna, D-Calif., 1974; Rep. Frank Brasco, D-N.Y., 1974; Rep. Bertram Podell, D-N.Y., 1974; Rep. James F. Hastings, R-N.Y., 1976; Rep. Andrew J. Hinshaw, R-Calif., 1977; Rep. Richard Tonry, D-La., 1977; Rep. Charles Diggs, D-Mich., 1978; Rep. J. Herbert Burke, R-Fa., 1978; Rep. Frank M. Clark, D-Pa., 1979.
Also, Assistant Secretary of State Elliott Abrams (R), 1991; Michael Deaver (R), White House Deputy Chief of Staff to Ronald Reagan, 1987; Melvyn Paisley, Assistant Secretary of the Navy, 1991; Victor D. Cohen, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force, 1991; James E. Gaines, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy, 1991; Deborah Gore Dean (R), Assistant Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, 1988; James G. Watt (R), U.S. Secretary of the Interior, 1995; Sen. Harrison A. Williams, D-N.J., 1981; Rep. John Jenrette, D-S.C., 1981; Rep. Richard Kelly, R-Fla., 1981; Rep. Raymond Lederer, D-Pa., 1981; Rep. Michael Myers, D-Pa., 1981; Rep. Frank Thompson, D-N.J., 1981; Rep. John M. Murphy, D-N.Y., 1981.
Also, Rep. Jon Hinson, R-Miss., 1981; Rep. Joshua Eilberg, D-Pa., 1981; Rep. Dan Flood, D-Pa., 1981; Rep. Frederick W. Richmond, D-N.Y., 1982; Rep. George V. Hansen, R-Ind., 1984; Rep. Mario Biaggi, D-N.Y., 1987; Rep. Robert Garcia, D-N.Y., 1987; Rep. Pat Swindall, R-Ga., 1989; Harry E. Claiborne (D), Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada, 1984; Walter Nixon (D), Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi, 1986; Catalina Vasquez Villalpando (R), U.S. Treasurer, 1992; Sen. David Durenberger, R-Minn., 1995; Rep. Jay Kim, R-Calif., 1992; Rep. Nicholas Mavroules, D-Mass., 1993; Rep. Albert Bustamante, D-Texas, 1993; Walter Nixon (D), Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi, 1989; Alcee Hastings (D), Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, 1992; Robert Frederick Collins (D), Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, 1991.
President Bill Clinton (D) admitted providing false testimony under oath about his affair with Monica S. Lewinsky, gave up his law license for five years and paid a $25,000 fine in exchange for not facing charges as a private citizen, 2001; Darleen Druyun, Principal Deputy U.S. Under Secretary of the Air Force, 2004; Wade Sanders, Deputy Assistant U.S. Secretary of the Navy, for Reserve Affairs, 2009; Webster Hubbell, U.S. Associate Attorney General, 1996; Rep. Carroll Hubbard, R-Ky., 1996; Rep. Carl C. Perkins, D-Ky., 1996; Rep. Walter Fauntroy, D-D.C., 1996; Rep. Buz Lukens, R-Ohio, 1996; Rep. Mary Rose Oakar, D-Ohio; Rep. Dan Rostenkowski, R-Ill., 1995; Rep. Joe Kolter, D-Pa., 1996; Rep. Wes Cooley, R-Ore., 1997; Rep. Austin Murphy, D-Pa., 1999; Rep. Mel Reynolds, D-Ill., 1997.
John Korsmo (R), Chairman of the Federal Housing Finance Board, 2005; Claude Allen (R), Director of the Domestic Policy Council, 2006; Lester Crawford (R), Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, 2006; Scooter Libby (R), Chief of Staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, 2007; David Safavian (R), Administrator for the Office of Management and Budget, 2006; Robert E. Coughlin (R), Deputy Chief of Staff for the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice, 2009; Felipe Sixto (R), Special Assistant for Intergovernmental Affairs, 2009; Scott Bloch (R), U.S. Special Counsel, 2013; Rep. Jim Traficant, D-Ohio, 2002; Rep. Frank Ballance, D-N.C., 2005; Rep. Duke Cunningham, R- Calif., 2005; Rep. Bob Ney, R-Ohio, 2007; Rep. Larry Craig, R-Idaho, 2007; Rep. William J. Jefferson, D-La., 2009; Brett Pfeffer, chief of staff for Rep. Jefferson, 2006.
Gen. David Petraeus (I), Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, 2015; Rep. Mark D. Siljander, R-Mich., 2012; Rep. Laura Richardson, D-Calif., 2012; Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. D-Ill., 2013; Rep. Rick Renzi, R-Ariz., 2013; Rep. Trey Radel, R-Fla., 2013; Rep. Michael Grimm, R-N.Y., 2015; House Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., 2016; Rep. Chaka Fattah, D-Pa., 2016; Rep. Corrine Brown, D-Fla., 2017; Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., 2017; Samuel B. Kent (R), Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, 2009; Jack Camp (R), Senior Judge of the U.S District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, 2010; Thomas Porteous (D), Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, 2010; Mark E. Fuller (R), Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama, 2015.
Lt. Gen Michael Flynn (R), National Security Advisor, 2017; Steve Bannon (R), White House Chief Strategist and Senior Counselor to the President Donald Trump, 2022; Rep. Steve Stockman, R-Texas, 2018; Rep. Chris Collins, R-N.Y., 2019; Rep.Duncan D. Hunter, R-Calif., 2019; Rep. Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., 2022.
TRUMP SHOULD BE TREATED NO DIFFERENTLY THAN ANY OF THE ABOVE CROOKED, FORMER MEMBERS OF CONGRESS AND OTHERS WERE TREATED.
* Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., was temporarily banned on Twitter after she posted a comment about the deadly, mass shooting at a private, charter school in Nashville, Tenn. Greene said the shooter had her “Trans Day of Vengeance” as three children and three adults were killed. Authorities said that the accused killer’s sexual preference has not been considered a factor in the shootings.
* As part of Women’s History Month, Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Fla., praised former first lady Melania Trump; former trump strategist and senior counselor to the president, Kellyanne Conway; former education secretary Betsy DeVos; and former White House Press Officer Kayleigh McEnany, for their efforts to “forge a better future for our nation.”
Donalds said Mrs. Trump’s achievements include modeling for major international agencies, starting her own skincare and jewelry lines, and launching the “Be Best” initiative, to fight cyberbullying and drug abuse. Mrs. Trump left the White House with the lowest opinion poll ratings of any first lady in U.S. history. Personally, Mrs. Trump was never my type.
Donalds said Conway was the “first female campaign manager to win a United States presidential election” and praised her recent work as a political commentator. In June 2019, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel recommended that Conway be fired for “unprecedented” multiple violations of the Hatch Act of 1939. She also made infamous the phrase “alternative facts” to describe trump’s lies.
McEnany was saluted for her role as trump’s fourth and final White House press secretary. McEnany got dismal grades from the Associated Press, which wrote that she “has made clear from her first briefing that she’s willing to defend her boss’s view of himself as well as his most flagrant misstatements.”
DeVos’ list of achievements included her work as a GOP fundraiser and committee member, as well as her four years as secretary of education. Last year, Devos said the education department “should not exist.”
* Rep. Tim Burchett, R-Tenn, reacted to the Nashville school shooting by saying there’s nothing that can be done and that he protects his daughter by homeschooling her.
“Three precious little kids lost their lives, and I believe three adults, I believe, and the shooter of course, lost their life too,” Burchett said. “So, it’s a horrible, horrible situation. And, we’re not gonna fix it.”
* Former President trump called Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg an “animal” and warned of of “potential death & destruction” before he was indicted for his role in a 2016 hush-money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels. Trump also shared an article from the far-right outlet National File that included an image of trump holding a baseball bat next to an image of Bragg’s head.
* Florida state Rep. Will Robinson Jr. (R) was fooled into reciting made-up funny and sexual names at a House civil justice subcommittee meeting. Robinson read a list of opponents and supporters of a bill during the subcommittee meeting and may not have been focusing on the names.
“Anita Dick is an opponent,” he said. “Holden Hiscock is also an opponent.”
It was not clear who had provided Robinson with the fake names.