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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Trump, State Government, and Pardons

In  Defying the Oddswe discuss Russian involvement in the 2016 campaign.

James Madison in Federalist 51:
In the compound republic of America, the power surrendered by the people is first divided between two distinct governments, and then the portion allotted to each subdivided among distinct and separate departments. Hence a double security arises to the rights of the people. The different governments will control each other, at the same time that each will be controlled by itself.
Ari Melber and Meredith Mandell report at NBC:
While presidential pardons can halt the federal case, local prosecutors could then pursue any Americans suspected of aiding Russia’s election meddling. In fact, legal experts say presidential pardons could make that prospect more likely.
According to a new MSNBC legal analysis, federal pardons could open the door to local criminal investigations in several states.
The most likely places are New York, Virginia and Illinois, three states where there is evidence that election-related crimes occurred — though it is unclear if any Americans assisted with those Russian efforts.
Beyond the three main states, the legal arguments for potential criminal jurisdiction are even broader, extending to many of the 39 states that were subject to Russian hacking. 
Josh Dawsey at Politico:
Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team is working with New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on its investigation into Paul Manafort and his financial transactions, according to several people familiar with the matter.
The cooperation is the latest indication that the federal probe into President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman is intensifying. It also could potentially provide Mueller with additional leverage to get Manafort to cooperate in the larger investigation into Trump’s campaign, as Trump does not have pardon power over state crimes.