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Old 03-24-2019, 09:20 PM
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Investigating Trump, post-Mueller


The Attorneys General of Maryland and the District of Columbia are still on the case: https://thehill.com/homenews/adminis...-scotland-golf

And the Manhattan DA: https://www.cnn.com/2018/08/23/polit...ion/index.html

And there are lots o' other lawsuits: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...g_Donald_Trump

And of course the Democratic House will not be twiddling its thumbs.

This is a thread to discuss these and other efforts to hold the President accountable under the rule of law.

Last edited by Elendil's Heir; 03-24-2019 at 09:23 PM.
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Old 03-24-2019, 09:46 PM
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Ok I predict he'll win 2020 and by the time he gets out of office will be so old and infeeble the state won't waste their time, it will all wash away. He's Won.
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Old 03-24-2019, 09:57 PM
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The Trumps have been fighting the legal system since the era of Fred Trump. I think it's factored into the business model.

I think it's fantasy to believe that a sitting president is going to be criminally prosecuted at either the federal or state level.
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Old 03-24-2019, 09:59 PM
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Butina: https://www.thetrace.org/2019/02/nra...paign-finance/
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Old 03-24-2019, 10:02 PM
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Trump Foundation: https://thehill.com/policy/finance/3...ion-by-fec-irs

1MDB: https://www.cnbc.com/2018/03/03/1mdb...-us-probe.html

Last edited by Sage Rat; 03-24-2019 at 10:03 PM.
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Old 03-24-2019, 10:05 PM
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Inauguration funding: https://www.salon.com/2019/02/27/a-t...ittee_partner/

Unknown whether it lead to any further investigations but Israel: https://www.brennancenter.org/blog/m...ussia-his-mind

Last edited by Sage Rat; 03-24-2019 at 10:07 PM.
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Old 03-24-2019, 10:08 PM
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Wikileaks: https://www.cnbc.com/2018/11/16/doj-...n-assange.html

Cambridge Analytica: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/15/u...stigation.html
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Old 03-24-2019, 10:34 PM
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Deutsche Money Laundering: https://www.npr.org/2018/11/29/67182...undering-probe
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Old 03-24-2019, 10:50 PM
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Yeah, it's a political war, I got that.

The whole basis for the seriousness of the major investigation panned out to nothing, so the engine of war churns on. Just glad the election was legitimate.
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Old 03-24-2019, 10:53 PM
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Speculative:

The "unnamed foreign nationally owned business" case was liable to either refer to Gazprom or Saudi Aramco. Given that Mueller has called the Russia case, that makes Aramco a slightly more likely option.

Hatred:
https://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box...n-saudi-arabia
https://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box...-should-pay-us

Big cash handout:
https://www.arabianbusiness.com/aram...it-674294.html

Oh yeah baby:
https://www.latimes.com/politics/la-...htmlstory.html

Questions raised:
https://slate.com/news-and-politics/...egitimate.html
https://thehill.com/policy/finance/4...oil-ipo-report
  #11  
Old 03-24-2019, 10:58 PM
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Yeah, it's a political war, I got that.

The whole basis for the seriousness of the major investigation panned out to nothing, so the engine of war churns on. Just glad the election was legitimate.
Whether Trump was guilty of collusion or not, the election was always legitimate just on the basis that American elections are such a big spectacle that the barrier for entry is so high as to make outside involvement effectively impossible. Even if we assume that Russia managed to get 5X the payout from their strategies (which is unlikely), they spent like $1m on interference in the campaign. The parties spent a few hundred million, and the American press gave Trump something like $10b worth in free coverage, just through their hatred of his non-PCness.

CNN did more for Trump than Russia ever did.
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Old 03-24-2019, 11:07 PM
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There are 17 Trump investigations. However several are probably closed now that the special counsel is done, or they'll be picked up by other districts.

https://www.wired.com/story/mueller-...omplete-guide/

Democrats have a list of 85 topics they want to investigate.

https://www.axios.com/2018-midterm-e...b0c30db6c.html

So the investigations continue.

One thing I don't get is why Mueller was wishy washy on obstruction of justice. That seemed like a pretty solid case.
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Old 03-24-2019, 11:30 PM
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Yeah, it's a political war, I got that.
Well, it's more of a pro-transparency movement. Personally, I don't care much about whether Trump is or is not liable to legal punishment in the long run for sleazy stuff he's done. I just think we have a right to know about sleazy stuff he's done.

We should be able to see the tax returns. We should be able to know about the activities of the Trump Organization vis-a-vis foreign policy and lobbyists. We should be able to know what actually happened with the Trumps' various "charitable" organizations and financial ventures and how they intertwine with their political activities. We should be able to know whether Trump associates violated campaign finance rules. And we should be able to know the ways in which responsible governance, such as appointing qualified people to unfilled administration posts, has been abandoned in favor of backscratching and dealmaking for private gain.

This is not about a partisan "political war". This is about Trump being a known con artist and grifter of long standing (as most Republicans probably would have enthusiastically agreed back in the early 2000's when Trump self-identified as a Democrat). In his campaign he did a lot of posturing about "draining the swamp" in Washington. But two years in, the White House has become notoriously swampier, with a secretive and haphazard management style involving an endless string of shady cronies and underqualified "palace favorites" who get brought on board with laudatory tweets and subsequently leave in embarrassing disgrace and/or disdain.

If you don't mind living with that kind of shamelessly oligopolistic banana-republic-lite setup, that's up to you. But you shouldn't pretend that anybody who wants it properly and thoroughly investigated is just being a partisan shit-stirrer.
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Old 03-24-2019, 11:33 PM
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Ok I predict he'll win 2020 and by the time he gets out of office will be so old and infeeble the state won't waste their time, it will all wash away. He's Won.
I think this is likely.
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Old 03-24-2019, 11:35 PM
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... One thing I don't get is why Mueller was wishy washy on obstruction of justice. That seemed like a pretty solid case.
It seems that he disagreed. Do you think your judgement is superior to his on this matter?
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Old 03-24-2019, 11:42 PM
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Just glad the election was legitimate.
The 22-month special counsel probe led to charges against 37 defendants, which included six Trump associates, 26 Russians and three Russian companies. Seven defendants have pleaded guilty, and one, Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, was convicted at trial.

While Mueller's investigation is over, several criminal investigations are still ongoing.

They relate to an alleged Russian conspiracy to blast political propaganda across Americans' social media networks; Manafort's political colleague from Russia, Konstantin Kilimnik; and what Manafort's deputy and a central Trump political player, Rick Gates, knows, according to court records.
https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/24/polit...ase/index.html
Good thing the election was "legitimate", though.
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Old 03-24-2019, 11:57 PM
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I've never seen so many Americans so upset to find out that their president is not a traitor.
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Old 03-24-2019, 11:59 PM
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I've never seen so many Americans so upset to find out that their president is not a traitor.
Do you recall how upset they were when they found out he was their President?
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Old 03-25-2019, 12:01 AM
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I've never seen so many Americans so upset to find out that their president is not a traitor.
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Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
Do you recall how upset they were when they found out he was their President?
Well, then being an incompetent makes it better...

Not.
  #20  
Old 03-25-2019, 12:21 AM
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I've never seen so many Americans so upset to find out that their president is not a traitor.
I'm not upset, but I didn't expect the investigation to determine otherwise.

The most plausible scenario was always that Trump had been compromised at some point - engaging in money laundering with Russian or Ukrainian mafia, having sex with prostitutes without doing an age-check in St. Petersburg, etc. Collusion was never (for me) the issue, but nor would I expect any success on the part of American counter-intelligence to reveal conclusive proof of the existence of blackmail materials (nor collusion).

From watching his activities on the world stage, it's hard to explain how this announcement:

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/...thdrawal-trump

Doesn't follow exactly from this meeting the prior day:

https://www.jpost.com/Middle-East/Ru...-troops-574799

Timing-wise, there's no other thing to explain the decision that I'm aware of.

There's nothing to explain a universe where the President of the United States gets onto global television with the President of Russia and denounces the abilities of his own intelligence services, except being compromised.

I would hope for evidence that Trump is a traitor not because it would make me happy that he's a traitor, but because it would allow us to deal with the issue that there have been a number of very bizarre moves which he has made that really have no explanation, even from the view of Trump's transactionalist/deal chasing approach to politics and accepting that he's sort of stupid and rash in his decision making, other than that he has been compromised by various sources - likely all of the way from Russia, to Israel, to Saudi Arabia, to Kim Kardashian.

Right now, the government functions relatively well and properly in defense of the national interest, on the basis that the Senate appoints most of the top positions to government. The system is designed to be robust against stupid Presidents.

But, given eight years, Trump is liable to wear them down and slowly work on advancing people like Whitaker up the ladder. He's a lot more able to make surprise announcements like "We're withdrawing from Syria!" and force it through, because he's been able to get all of the Whitakers in government up into the upper-echelons. Not necessarily corrupt, but stupid enough to go along with stupid policy. Of course, there will be some corrupt ones as well.

The ability for a compromised President to work against the interests of the country grow stronger the longer an amount of time that he is in office. Minus evidence, we have to allow that to continue and hope that the Democrats won't nominate some complete moron to compete against him. Given history, I expect Gillibrand to come up top and she's really just seems to be young Hillary Clinton. Trump has already beaten Hillary Clinton - I'm not terribly hopeful on that front.

I hope that he's prosecuted for crimes - whether it be treason or money laundering - not because it makes me happy to have had such a person as President, but because it saves the country. Even if we assume that he's not compromised and that his actions in aid of Russia, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Kim Kardashian all make sense from whatever ignorant part of his mind it is that chose all of those discrete actions, well...a President too stupid to work to American advantage is just as well as calling compromised even if it's just that he's simply just that stupid. We still need to be saved and the political process isn't a very reliable one for that. And where collusion and blackmail are nigh-impossible to prove, bank fraud is eminently provable. Mueller's investigation was able to kick off investigations of further crimes, and that works for me. I don't care whether Mueller himself follows up on those tangents or others do, so long as they're all traced to their ends.

Last edited by Sage Rat; 03-25-2019 at 12:23 AM.
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Old 03-25-2019, 03:17 AM
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Even Barr's pity memo states it doesn't exonerate the President of any criminal acts. Barr chose to leave that part from RM's report in there. Of course, it's impossible to indict a sitting POTUS, but it isn't impossible to indict those who work for him, including but not limited to his children, who've gotten their hands dirty for him.
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Old 03-25-2019, 03:26 AM
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I've never seen so many Americans so upset to find out that their president is not a traitor.
You are confused. Some charges are very difficult to prove in a court of law. Trump is known to be a fraudster and could probably be indicted for campaign finance violations. Some of his closest confidantes are going to prison. His coddling of Putin is disgusting. The main reason NOT to view him as a Manchurian Candidate is his stupidity: he's just not competent enough to be a master traitor. Yet some view him as exonerated. One doesn't know whether to laugh or to weep.

Al Capone was convicted only of tax evasion; does that mean he was not a murderer?
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Old 03-25-2019, 03:55 AM
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...Just glad the election was legitimate.
Outside of the three to five million "illegal votes" that Hillary got? Does it concern you in the slightest that he never even tried to prove that?
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Old 03-25-2019, 03:59 AM
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Outside of the three to five million "illegal votes" that Hillary got? Does it concern you in the slightest that he never even tried to prove that?
Pence lead a voter fraud investigation committee. To be fair, the committee never successfully did anything, nor did they try all that hard, but it did exist.
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Old 03-25-2019, 09:04 AM
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Sage Rat, would you care to provide some content to go with those nouns and links?
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Old 03-25-2019, 09:17 AM
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I've never seen so many Americans so upset to find out that their president is not a traitor.
I've never seen so many Americans willing to defend suspected treason and corruption as long as they benefited from it, yet here we are.
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Old 03-25-2019, 09:42 AM
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Ok I predict he'll win 2020 and by the time he gets out of office will be so old and infeeble the state won't waste their time, it will all wash away. He's Won.
Perhaps deemed mentally incapable of standing trial. President, no problem, a trial, no.
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Old 03-25-2019, 10:01 AM
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Any further investigations will be perceived as vindictive and unwarranted harassment.

The Muller investigation has cost taxpayers 25 million and found nothing directly against Trump.
It's been an emotional rollercoaster for the country. It started right after the election and before Trump was even sworn into office. The public sees it as sour grapes by Hillary supporters. The dems can't accept the fact that she ran a shit campaign.

The unsubstantiated accusations against Trump are already a political disaster for Democrats. It will certainly be used against them in the Presidential race.

Dems could lose the House if they continue the relentless attacks.

Last edited by aceplace57; 03-25-2019 at 10:05 AM.
  #29  
Old 03-25-2019, 10:06 AM
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Any further investigations will be perceived as vindictive and unwarranted harassment.
So you don't think oversight of the executive branch requires investigations? Or you don't think congress should do any oversight?

Quote:
The Muller investigation has cost taxpayers 25 million and found nothing directly against Trump.
Cite for the cost? In my understanding, it actually paid for itself, and more, based on the criminal resources it exposed and siezed.

Quote:
The unsubstantiated accusations against Trump are already a political disaster for Democrats. It will certainly be used against them in the Presidential race.

Dems could lose the House if they continue the relentless attacks.
This is fantasy world stuff. And FWIW, we don't actually know what's in the Mueller report. All we know is what a Trump appointee chose to say about it... and what he said included a direct implication that there is evidence Trump and co committed obstruction of justice (though not enough for criminal prosecution, according to this Trump appointee).
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Old 03-25-2019, 10:08 AM
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The cost is 25.2 million. So far.
https://www.google.com/amp/amp.timei...er-report-cost
Quote:
Mueller’s office has not yet filed an expense report for the last six months of his investigation, but including the DOJ’s contributions, the total reported cost so far is $25.2 million.

Given that the last three expense report

Last edited by aceplace57; 03-25-2019 at 10:10 AM.
  #31  
Old 03-25-2019, 10:09 AM
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Any further in investigations will be perceived vindictive and unwarranted harassment.
I trust Trump on continue ignoring the lesson he should had learned. That about really getting better people. So more investigations are coming.

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The Muller investigation has cost taxpayers 25 million and found nothing directly against Trump.
AFAIK, this one is wrong since the Justice department got a lot in fines and seizures against people like Manafort.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aceplace57 View Post
The unsubstantiated accusations against Trump are already political disaster for Democrats.
Attorney General William Barr quoted Mueller saying his report “does not exonerate” Trump.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aceplace57 View Post
They could lose the House if they continue the relentless attacks.
Since a lot of the attacks will not be about the done Russia thing; the attacks will continue because, again, Trump will make new reasons to justify them.

Last edited by GIGObuster; 03-25-2019 at 10:10 AM.
  #32  
Old 03-25-2019, 10:14 AM
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I didn't object to the Mueller investigation. It was needed to better understand the Russians interference.

I do think the public wants the investigations to stop. There are better and more traditional ways to politically oppose Trump's agenda.
IMHO
Don't continue to abuse the Justice System for political gain.

Get back to regular politics. Debate between the Dems and Republicans is healthy.

Last edited by aceplace57; 03-25-2019 at 10:16 AM.
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Old 03-25-2019, 10:14 AM
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It actually paid for itself. It may even turn a profit, after everything is accounted for:

https://thinkprogress.org/at-a-repor...-76fdcee15c9b/

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/...ts/2736507002/

Your information sources are not good. You should re-evaluate them and make sure you're getting more than just biased info from one side.
  #34  
Old 03-25-2019, 10:17 AM
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I didn't object to the Mueller investigation. It was needed to better understand the Russians interference.
So let's wait until we see the actual report before making conclusions about it.

Quote:
I do think the public wants the investigations to stop. There are better and more traditional ways to politically oppose Trump's agenda.
IMHO
Investigations into possible wrongdoing in the government are one of the most important functions of congress. Are you suggesting that they should ignore evidence of wrongdoing?

Quote:
Don't continue to abuse the Justice System for political gain.
I agree. Hopefully you'll oppose the DOJ if it resists efforts to release the Mueller report over concerns it could be politically damaging to the president.
  #35  
Old 03-25-2019, 10:20 AM
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they will end up looking for parking tickets he did not pay in NYC
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Old 03-25-2019, 10:20 AM
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Investigating Whitewater cost over $70 million. What did we get for all that money? A blowjob. Spare me your pretensions of fiscal responsibility.
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Old 03-25-2019, 10:22 AM
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But also resulted in getting $42 million from Manafort. The Manafort money didn't go into investigation budget (nor should it have), but in terms of "net cost to taxpayers" the taxpayers came out way ahead on this one.

Plus the argument that "The investigation didn't prove anything directly against Trump and therefore was useless" is a deliberate attempt to distract from the fact that the investigation was extremely productive. Several members of Trump's campaign team and inner circle have either pleaded guilty or been convicted of felonies, and there are another two dozen or so indictments outstanding. Compare that to the multiple Benghazi investigations (cost $7 million) which found nothing, or the Whitewater investigation (cost $69 million) which found a lie about - and attempt to hide - an infidelity.

And of course there are other ongoing investigations. Should we not look into the issues with misuse of charity funds, breaches of campaign finance laws, and possible bank fraud relating to loan applications? Should we handwave them away simply because we're all a bit bored with it all? Because I'm pretty sure the legal system doesn't work like that.

"The public" doesn't want the investigations to stop. Those who support Trump want them to stop. Those who don't, want them to continue.
  #38  
Old 03-25-2019, 10:32 AM
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It seems that he disagreed. Do you think your judgement is superior to his on this matter?
I am confused and don't know enough details. The entire report needs to be examined by independent sources.
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Old 03-25-2019, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
Quoth aceplace57:

IMHO
Don't continue to abuse the Justice System for political gain.

Get back to regular politics. Debate between the Dems and Republicans is healthy.
Getting back to regular politics, or at least attempting to, is the reason for the investigations. To go back to non-criminal politics, we have to catch the criminals.
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Old 03-25-2019, 02:09 PM
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There are probably all manner of crony crimes and fraud that can be uncovered to hang on Trump. This is a guy who boasted in the first debate that he paid off politicians.

Even the obstruction charge seems reasonable, but it says nothing of the Putin conspiracy stuff.

This is what makes me think that the Russian Conspiracy theorists should be hung out to dry by anyone with any sense of decency. Only they can tell us why they were so bizarrely fixated on the Russia angle when there were other things to hang on Trump. I think they were duped by the spooks and warmongers who wanted to antagonize Russia. Brennan, Clapper, etc.

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  #41  
Old 03-25-2019, 02:22 PM
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Wow! That's just over a quarter of the money we spent investigating Clinton.

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  #42  
Old 03-25-2019, 02:43 PM
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Wow! That's just over a quarter of the money we spent investigating Clinton.
25 million is also far less than what trump spends on vacations.
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Old 03-26-2019, 04:56 AM
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This is what makes me think that the Russian Conspiracy theorists should be hung out to dry by anyone with any sense of decency. Only they can tell us why they were so bizarrely fixated on the Russia angle when there were other things to hang on Trump. I think they were duped by the spooks and warmongers who wanted to antagonize Russia. Brennan, Clapper, etc.
I think they were duped by the massive amount of actual evidence of interaction between the campaign team and Russians that members of the campaign team kept lying about and trying to cover up, up to and including lying under oath.
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Old 03-26-2019, 05:21 AM
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I get that there are ongoing legal investigations into the Trump organization, but I tend to doubt that Trump or his children are going to be charged with crimes. For one thing, the declination to suggest indictments against the Trump family strengthens him politically. Accurate or not - and I think not - much of the press is already framing this as exoneration and 'no collusion,' which is only going to embolden the president. Truth be told, I think the only ones who ever really cared about this investigation were diehard progressives like most of us here on SDMB, but a lot of people, even a lot of people who aren't Trump fans, never really gave a toss about this investigation. And future investigations are just going to seem like sour grapes.

You want to impeach the president? Let him destroy the economy or make an extremely dumb foreign policy decision that gets a lot of American troops killed. Then he'll be impeached and maybe even imprisoneed - for something. But not until then.

Last edited by asahi; 03-26-2019 at 05:22 AM.
  #45  
Old 03-30-2019, 11:10 AM
Lance Turbo is offline
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Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Asheville, NC
Posts: 3,863
Maybe it's time to stop investigating Trump/Russian ties and start looking at Trump/China ties. One notable expert thinks that's a good idea.

"All of the fools that are so focused on looking only at Russia should start also looking in another direction, China." - @realDonaldTrump
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