The actual case.
I’ve been listening to today’s events as reported by MSNBC and have heard a lot of pretty intelligent people talking an awful lot — they have to; it’s without question a news event and must be covered — which means a number of irrelevant and incorrect asides can come out of their mouths.
I’m therefore profoundly grateful for Andrew Weissman and Joyce Vance and Neal Katyal and Brandon Van Grack, et al., because they are smart lawyers with great experience in major federal cases. They stick to the facts and to the reality. Which is: a formerly elected official of the United States has been indicted and arraigned for a number of crimes. For which the indictment (you really must read it) provides ample and shocking evidence, i.e., proof, facts.
Some of the issues on the discussion agenda are, to me, tangential, superficial and insignificant.
- Trump’s political status. How many times do people repeat what I hear as a distortion of reality, specifically that if Trump becomes the GOP presidential nominee, all prosecutions against him must be stopped? As I read it, there is no law blocking the criminal prosecution of a presidential candidate or a president. The supposed rule barring prosecution is not a law; it is a convention, a sort of point of political etiquette.
- Yeah, this may be an unprecedented situation but so what? The case itself is not unprecedented. There have been numbers of prosecutions against people guilty of espionage or treason. One of them, Robert Hanssen, just died in his Colorado prison cell. (Reminds me to check out cell availability at the Florence facility, a US supermax prison.)
- There are two planets of our American reality being covered by journalists. One is the rule of law — in this case, criminal law. High crimes. The other planet is politics. If anyone sees a bridge connecting the two planets, it’s a rainbow bridge, i.e., imaginary or mythical. I suggest you who believe Trump is straddling that bridge go to a performance, first, of Das Rheingold (wherein the rainbow bridge is opened to the gods) and then Götterdammerung (wherein the bridge burns and the gods die).
- I don’t care what Mitch McConnell, Kevin McCarthy and the rest of the GOP contingent say about the indictment. I don’t care, not only because it’s bullshit. I don’t care because they and their opinions are in no way relevant to this case. (Except for the GOP House members who actively might have participated in the January 6 assault, in which case they, too, might be indicted.) They can’t affect a damn thing.
- I don’t care what Trump’s verbal reaction is. He can’t affect a damn thing either, except possibly getting indicted for incitement to violence if he keeps spewing his venom at his “enemies.”
- The number of cultish protesters outside the courthouse(s). They will not affect anything in this case. Nothing. And they didn’t affect anything during Jan 6, either. The vote confirmation was completed. The only thing the assailants affected was their futures — as determined by the DOJ and the judiciary. Oh, and the Federal Bureau of Prisons (see above, re Florence).
- I’m not even listening to predictions about what Judge Cannon might do. Nobody knows what she’ll do, or even if she’ll be the judge on the case.
So I’m paying attention only to one thing: 9:23-cr-80101 AMC.
That is, the case.