(Door Hugo Kijne te Hoboken USA)
While Trump is receiving what looks like a love letter from his new best friend, Kim Jong-un, and simultaneously antagonizes both his old European friends and China with import tariffs, the problems he is facing at home are multiplying. In the Mueller probe the focus is now apparently on Trump’s many attempts, some public and very aggressive, to have Jeff Sessions un-recuse himself from overseeing the Russia investigation, which may very well constitute obstruction of justice, because the US President tried to make the Attorney General violate Department of Justice policies. When Trump fired James Comey, his other attempt to obstruct justice, he had a fallback option in the way Comey went public with the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails, but with Sessions he has none, which makes it almost inevitable that there was ‘corrupt intent,’ something prosecutors are looking for. This is why Rudy Giuliani is worried about Trump being interviewed by Mueller. According to Trump’s lead ‘lawyer’ collusion is based on facts and is not the problem ‘because there was none,’ but obstruction of justice is a matter of interpretation of the context of his client’s decisions and that totally freaks Hizzoner out.
Trump finally understands that the reason why he fired Comey can hurt him badly, so this week he lied that Comey’s firing had nothing to do with Russia. Unfortunately for him he had already told the American public in an interview with Lester Holt that he fired Comey because of the Russia investigation, and demonstrating perfect teamwork this very same week Giuliani said in an interview that Comey had been fired because he would not tell Trump that he’s not a target in the Russia investigation. To make things worse a memo from former Deputy FBI Director McCabe surfaced that shows that Trump had asked Rod Rosenstein to reference Russia in his recommendation to fire Comey, something the Deputy AG refused to do. In Southern Manhattan things got even dicier for Trump when it was revealed that Michael Cohen not only taped conversations with Stormy Daniels’s former lawyer but almost certainly also with Trump. The only remedy for obstruction of justice is impeachment, but the ‘Trump tapes’ can lead to criminal indictments, to be executed as soon as the president leaves the White House. We may end up with a future felon in the Oval Office who only tries to hang on to stay out of jail.
Anticipating convictions of associates and possibly family members Trump practiced some more with issuing pardons, exercising the only presidential power without checks and balances. After pardoning Joe Arpaio and Scooter Libby he now pardoned Dinesh D’Souza, a summa cum laude graduate of the Jozef Goebbels School of Propaganda, who has pled guilty to a campaign finance violation. Other pardons Trump is considering are for Martha Stewart and former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.
More significant than the choice of the individuals Trump is still planning to pardon, both of whom have appeared on his show ‘The Celebrity Apprentice,’ are the crimes all recipients of his pardons, current and future, have been convicted for: perjury, lying to the FBI, wire fraud and bribery, pretty much the spectrum of current and future indictments of members of Trump’s inner circle.
Staying with the celebrity theme Trump received Kim Kardashian in the White House. She came to ask for a pardon for a great-grandmother who has been incarcerated more than 20 years for a non-violent crime, but the White House press office made her a special adviser on prison reform. Some job titles are earned very easily in this administration.
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