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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Friday, August 24, 2018

POTUS and the Law

In Defying the Odds, we discuss Trump's record of scandal

Fox interview:
He continued: “For 30, 40 years I’ve been watching flippers. Everything’s wonderful and then they get 10 years in jail and they—they flip on whoever the next highest one is, or as high as you can go.”
“It almost ought to be outlawed. It’s not fair. Because if somebody’s going to give—spend five years like Michael Cohen, or 10 years, or 15 years in jail because of a taxi cab industry, because he defrauded some bank—the last two were tiny ones,” Trump explained. “You know, campaign violations are considered not a big deal, frankly. But if somebody defrauded a bank and he’s going to get 10 years in jail or 20 years in jail, but if you can say something bad about Donald Trump and you’ll go down to two or three years, which is the deal he made.”
..
 Trump, though, went on to criticize Attorney General Jeff Sessions, saying he “never took control of the Justice Department." When asked whether he would fire Sessions or Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, he maintained that he wants to “stay uninvolved” with the DOJ.
“Jeff Sessions recused himself, which he shouldn’t have done. Or he should have told me,” Trump said. “Even my enemies say that Jeff Sessions should have told you that he was going to recuse himself and then you wouldn’t have put him in. He took the job and then he said I’m going to recuse myself. I said, ‘what kind of man is this?’”
Trump added that the “only reason” he appointed him as attorney general was “because I felt loyalty.”



Neal Katyal at WP:
But the rule of law is about more than simple transparency; it demands justice, too. We have sworn, solemn statements that show the president almost certainly committed at least one felony. Trump’s lawyers are quick to claim that a sitting president cannot be indicted. That view doesn’t seem to have convinced even his own legal team, as they keep saying they don’t want the president to testify before Mueller because of a “perjury trap.” If there is no such thing as perjury for a sitting president, the claim’s a bit weird. Probably, Trump’s lawyers know the “no indictment” claim isn’t nearly as ironclad as they make it out to be. That’s why they resort to claptrap such as “Presidents cannot by definition obstruct Justice.” Absurd. The Declaration of Independence itself accused King George III of having “obstructed the Administration of Justice.” The Trump view would elevate the presidency above the 1776 British king and immunize Trump from one of the offenses that caused the American Revolution in the first place. Trump can’t cite actual law or history to support him, with the exception of Nixon’s widely mocked utterance that “when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.”