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There’s a devastating war in Europe and a bitter battle over a Supreme Court nominee, but Donald Trump always manages to make news.
Even when he doesn’t want to.
As with so many investigations going back to the Mueller probe, the Left keeps getting into a frenzy over the prospect of the legal process taking Trump down. The latest disappointment came when the new Manhattan district attorney slammed the breaks on the inquiry into whether Trump committed business fraud.
So now comes a leak to the New York Times that a lead prosecutor on the case thinks Trump is guilty as hell.
This is grievously unfair. If law enforcement officials believe they have evidence that someone committed a crime, they should charge that person and give him a chance to defend himself. But when a prosecutor is overruled, it is beyond unseemly–it is dangerous–to pop off and call that person a criminal without having to prove it in court.
Yet that’s what Mark Pomerantz, who resigned last month with a second prosecutor after DA Alvin Bragg declined to bring an indictment, just did. Bragg was elected after the previous DA, Cyrus Vance Jr., chose not to run.
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Now, I’m not saying there’s nothing to the allegations that Trump and his team inflated the value of real estate properties to keep the bank loans flowing. But it’s an extremely complicated area, with lots of legal write-offs, and a hard case to make.
Now Pomerantz didn’t unload on Trump publicly, which would be clearly unethical during an ongoing federal investigation. Instead, he put his accusations in his resignation letter, knowing full well that it would leak. Whether he or an associate leaked it is beside the point; the goal was to smear Trump.
In the Times piece, Pomerantz’s letter is quoted as saying that the former president was “guilty of numerous felony violations” and that it was “a grave failure of justice” not to charge him–which isn’t Pomerantz’s decision.
“The team that has been investigating Mr. Trump harbors no doubt about whether he committed crimes — he did.”
That’s just a cheap shot, and if the target had been anyone other than Trump, there would be a media uproar over the propriety of an ex-prosecutor making these accusations.
Trump himself made some unexpected news yesterday by suing Hillary Clinton and other Democrats over the 2016 election.
That would be the election that he, you know, won. So he is now litigating both his first and his second presidential races.
In the lawsuit filed in Florida, Trump alleges that Clinton and the other defendants “maliciously conspired to weave a false narrative” that he “was colluding with a hostile foreign sovereignty,” namely Russia. This is all about Russiagate.
He is charging “racketeering” and a “conspiracy to commit injurious falsehood.”
So all the evidence of Russian interference (without Trumpian collusion) would presumably be introduced.
I’m going to go out on a limb here and say this suit is more about settling scores and sticking it to Hillary than a successful legal strategy.
Trump is also making headlines by withdrawing his endorsement of Alabama Senate candidate Mo Brooks for daring to say it was time to move on from the ex-president’s accusations of a stolen election.
The once and probably future presidential candidate, who demands total loyalty, said that “when I heard his statement, I said, ‘Mo, you just blew the election, and there’s nothing you can do about it.’”
But the real news here goes beyond one Republican primary race. Brooks responded in a statement:
“President Trump asked me to rescind the 2020 elections, immediately remove Joe Biden from the White House, immediately put President Trump back in the White House, and hold a new special election for the presidency. As a lawyer, I’ve repeatedly advised President Trump that January 6 was the final election contest verdict and neither the U.S. Constitution nor the U.S. Code permit(s) what President Trump asks. Period.”
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What did Brooks, who was in political trouble anyway, mean by “rescind” the election and “remove” Biden? How would a congressman even theoretically have that power? You can bet the Jan. 6 committee will have some questions for him.
And in a total throwback, Stormy Daniels is back in the news. Trump is celebrating an appellate court ruling that she must pay him nearly $300,000 in lawyers’ fees and other costs over a failed defamation suit.
Trump, who still denies having had sex with Daniels–and whose then-lawyer Michael Cohen paid her hush money before the 2016 election–called the ruling “a total and complete victory and vindication for, and of me,” and a “purely political stunt” that “the Fake News probably won’t report.”
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The porn star, addressing her statement to “Tiny”, said “I will go to jail before I pay a penny.” She blamed the ruling on bungling by her former lawyer, Michael Avenatti, who was convicted last month of defrauding her of money she was owed from a book deal.
Trump, says Stormy, won on a technicality.
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This is a mere footnote, of course, to a salacious story that once drew enormous media attention. But the flood of headlines makes clear that even while overshadowed by Ukraine, the symbiotic relationship between Trump and the media remains strong.
Footnote: Trump also came up during President Biden’s press conference at the NATO summit in Belgium. Asked by a reporter about the prospect of Trump taking back the job in 2024, Biden said: “I’d be very fortunate if I had that same man running against me.”