The Coming Trainwreck

 

A deeply ugly scenario is shaping up. Consider the strong possibility that (a) Donald Trump through sheer petulance and poor judgment, has actually managed to be culpable of obstruction with respect to the May grand jury subpoena and (b) the morally deficient Twitter-slave currently running the Department of Justice under the watchful eye of the malignant buffoon who is currently POTUS is on a desperate course to indict the former president on whatever grounds possible and will do so regardless.  Consider the possibility that Trump is guilty but of crimes for which no Democrat would ever be prosecuted.

The likelihood that there is a great risk to national security from the contents of the documents at Mar-a-Lago strikes me as infinitesimally small. Anything of military or strategic value has likely been vacuumed up by Chinese techno espionage, Eric Swalwell’s pillow talk or everyday leaks, embassy parties, and/or old-fashioned bribery. But the left will tell us that Garland saved us from utter disaster at the hands of our enemies.  And most irritating of all will be that the mentally challenged who still believe the dossier proved Trump’s collusion with Putin will feel vindicated.

Why did Trump hang onto that material?  Even conceding his authority to declassify, the bulk of that stuff is still the property of the archive.  If he wanted evidence of the Russiagate hoax, for example, was it not possible to identify and summarize each relevant document and then insist on some secure handling by the archive to prevent surreptitious destruction or removal by the conspirators?

My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

The sheer ugliness of the national reaction to such a prosecution, the media gloating, the self-righteous pap from the usual suspects, and the seething rage of the right…  It has not happened yet but it already seems tiresome.

I would like to fantasize that in the aftermath of this fiasco, the GOP would respectfully decline to re-nominate a wounded Trump, instead elect a strong replacement with a popular mandate and sizeable congressional majorities and then effect vengeance and even prosecute the swamp creatures to the same measure as those lowlife scum have gone after conservatives in general and Trump affiliates in particular.  Would that it were a time of true, slashing defunding of the left with fun side events like stripping security clearance and barring government employment for the 51 “experts” who declared Hunter Biden’s laptop to be disinformation.

But that will not happen.  There will likely be a GOP President other than Trump and a GOP Congress but the left will recede only slightly, whine continuously, persist in rhetorical attacks, and somehow impose a near-mandatory amnesia about their crimes and atrocities on the grounds that it would be “extreme” or “divisive” or “partisan” even to point out their foul, recent history much less impose accountability.  And Republicans will be too polite and say that they are “looking forward, not backward” and we will limp along until the left launches its next new offensive from their unmolested sanctuaries.

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  1. JoelB Member
    JoelB
    @JoelB

     If he wanted evidence of the Russiagate hoax, for example, was it not possible to identify and summarize each relevant document and then insist on some secure handling by the archive to prevent surreptitious destruction or removal by the conspirators? 

    If the FBI can’t be trusted, can the archive? 

    • #1
  2. DrewInWisconsin, Oik Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oik
    @DrewInWisconsin

    If they had anything on him, they wouldn’t be holding it back until after the election.

    That they are holding it back tells me they got nothin’ and they need to leave the question hanging in order to influence the midterms.

    The Deep State Dems can’t allow their Trump-hating base to be dispirited. They need to keep alive the idea of Trump being prosecuted in order to dispirit the right. The GOPe will play along because they can’t risk actually winning in November.

    The Ruling Class also can’t risk riots should their base be angry that once again the Orange Man wasn’t led away in an Orange Jumpsuit.

    The Mar-a-Lago raid was so blatantly political that only the dumbest of the dumb thinks there’s something legitimate there.

     

    • #2
  3. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    JoelB (View Comment):

    If he wanted evidence of the Russiagate hoax, for example, was it not possible to identify and summarize each relevant document and then insist on some secure handling by the archive to prevent surreptitious destruction or removal by the conspirators?

    If the FBI can’t be trusted, can the archive?

    A very detailed inventory and secure access would make it tough for the bad guys–selective removal would become conspicuous.  Even a latter-day James Bond-type like Sandy Berger (yes, it was a joke) could not pull that sort of thing off (speaking of Democrats with no fear of felony jail time). 

    • #3
  4. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    DrewInWisconsin, Oik (View Comment):

    If they had anything on him, they wouldn’t be holding it back until after the election.

    That they are holding it back tells me they got nothin’ and they need to leave the question hanging in order to influence the midterms.

    The Deep State Dems can’t allow their Trump-hating base to be dispirited. They need to keep alive the idea of Trump being prosecuted in order to dispirit the right. The GOPe will play along because they can’t risk actually winning in November.

    The Ruling Class also can’t risk riots should their base be angry that once again the Orange Man wasn’t led away in an Orange Jumpsuit.

    The Mar-a-Lago raid was so blatantly political that only the dumbest of the dumb thinks there’s something legitimate there.

     

    But they haven’t been holding back.  The fact that they gave the matter to a grand jury four months ago after pushing for months says that this is not some sudden stunt but a serious effort.  With any other ex-president, some heavyweight lawyer/former cabinet official would have been brought in to broker some resolution with a formal review of docs as to privilege but a timely return of the rest.  All done quietly and non-newsworthy.  I have the gnawing suspicion that Trump did not follow legal advice as to how to resolve this and has given an opening to his enemies.  

    • #4
  5. 1787Libertarian Member
    1787Libertarian
    @

    I find it more likely than not that the FBI/DOJ has nothing outside of some really serious innuendo that a Grand Jury can be convinced needs further investigation therefore, justifying a GJ indictment that can then be plastered on all of the papers “TRUMP INDICTED!!!” Holding off until after the mid-terms is not aimed at votes this year, but rather aimed at keeping Trump off of the ballot for 24. In our modern climate, presidential elections always start the year before the election year, and waiting until January 23 would be right in line with keeping him off the ballot. That’s my two cents.

    The general government of the United STates has, since January 2016 (at least), been running a counterintelligence operation against a major political party’s presidential candidate and eventually presidential winner. This led to Russiagate, Stay Puffed Army Dude impeachment, stealing the 2020 election (yes Troll, it was stolen), and finally J6. 

    • #5
  6. MWD B612 "Dawg" Member
    MWD B612 "Dawg"
    @danok1

    Old Bathos (View Comment):
    I have the gnawing suspicion that Trump did not follow legal advice as to how to resolve this and has given an opening to his enemies.  

    That would be so out of character for him! (Sarcasm, BTW)

    I fear the same thing. The left has been going after him 24/7 since he came down the escalator in 2015. One would think he’d be a bit cautious now that he doesn’t have the protection of the presidential office. (Not that it made a difference to how hard they went after him.)

    • #6
  7. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    DrewInWisconsin, Oik (View Comment):

    If they had anything on him, they wouldn’t be holding it back until after the election.

    That they are holding it back tells me they got nothin’ and they need to leave the question hanging in order to influence the midterms.

    The Deep State Dems can’t allow their Trump-hating base to be dispirited. They need to keep alive the idea of Trump being prosecuted in order to dispirit the right. The GOPe will play along because they can’t risk actually winning in November.

    The Ruling Class also can’t risk riots should their base be angry that once again the Orange Man wasn’t led away in an Orange Jumpsuit.

    The Mar-a-Lago raid was so blatantly political that only the dumbest of the dumb thinks there’s something legitimate there.

     

    But they haven’t been holding back. The fact that they gave the matter to a grand jury four months ago after pushing for months says that this is not some sudden stunt but a serious effort. With any other ex-president, some heavyweight lawyer/former cabinet official would have been brought in to broker some resolution with a formal review of docs as to privilege but a timely return of the rest. All done quietly and non-newsworthy. I have the gnawing suspicion that Trump did not follow legal advice as to how to resolve this and has given an opening to his enemies.

    The KCBS political commentator said that Trump tried to run everything, including the White House when he was there, the way he ran his private businesses. Negotiate, hold back a few things, re-negotiate. He forgot he is no longer president and is sometimes his own worst enemy. 

    • #7
  8. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    Old Bathos:

    Why did Trump hang onto that material?  Even conceding his authority to declassify, the bulk of that stuff is still the property of the archive.  If he wanted evidence of the Russiagate hoax, for example, was it not possible to identify and summarize each relevant document and then insist on some secure handling by the archive to prevent surreptitious destruction or removal by the conspirators? 

    My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

    I think it’s just that he had to pack up in a hurry. 

    • #8
  9. 1787Libertarian Member
    1787Libertarian
    @

    Told you so:

    https://www.cnn.com/2022/08/31/politics/trump-delaying-2024-decision/index.html

    • #9
  10. JoelB Member
    JoelB
    @JoelB

    1787Libertarian (View Comment):
    Holding off until after the mid-terms is not aimed at votes this year, but rather aimed at keeping Trump off of the ballot for 24.

    That could actually turn out to be advantageous for conservative-populist Republicans like DeSantis. It could allow the MAGA forces  to unify without the baggage (deserved or not) that Trump brings with him. With no orange man, what excuse would the NTers have for not electing conservatives? They had better be careful about what they wish for.

    • #10
  11. 1787Libertarian Member
    1787Libertarian
    @

    JoelB (View Comment):

    1787Libertarian (View Comment):
    Holding off until after the mid-terms is not aimed at votes this year, but rather aimed at keeping Trump off of the ballot for 24.

    That could actually turn out to be advantageous for conservative-populist Republicans like DeSantis. It could allow the MAGA forces to unify without the baggage (deserved or not) that Trump brings with him. With no orange man, what excuse would the NTers have for not electing conservatives? They had better be careful about what they wish for.

    Trust me they will find a reason. Why are they opposing any of the MAGA Republicans this year? Hell let’s ask Troll for the answer. Something about being unfit for office because we have serious questions about the security of the 2020 elections? I am sure Rob Long can tell us.

    Look at the treatment DeSantis is getting from some “on the Right.”

    EDIT: added the line about DeSantis.

    • #11
  12. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    MarciN (View Comment):

    Old Bathos:

    Why did Trump hang onto that material? Even conceding his authority to declassify, the bulk of that stuff is still the property of the archive. If he wanted evidence of the Russiagate hoax, for example, was it not possible to identify and summarize each relevant document and then insist on some secure handling by the archive to prevent surreptitious destruction or removal by the conspirators?

    My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

    I think it’s just that he had to pack up in a hurry.

    But that does not explain the failure to process and return whatever docs are required.  That would be an excuse if this raid happened a week after the inauguration but not anymore.

    • #12
  13. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    JoelB (View Comment):

    1787Libertarian (View Comment):
    Holding off until after the mid-terms is not aimed at votes this year, but rather aimed at keeping Trump off of the ballot for 24.

    That could actually turn out to be advantageous for conservative-populist Republicans like DeSantis. It could allow the MAGA forces to unify without the baggage (deserved or not) that Trump brings with him. With no orange man, what excuse would the NTers have for not electing conservatives? They had better be careful about what they wish for.

    Good points.  GOP:  “OK, you took out Trump but now we get to exercise power under your rules.  You won’t like it.” 

    • #13
  14. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    This is all procedural BS. Obama has how many documents he took that he refuses to return? 

    And I am sorry, the President can declassify anything. He is the sole well of executive power. There is no other. I can read Article II very well. No laws, no rules, can override that. None. Taking a form out of the system declassifies it. LBJ declassified the existence of the SR-71 in a press conference. He did not say ahead of time “I declassify this” he just made the announcement. 

    I am all for decreasing the administrative state and the executive legislating. However, the person of the President has sole executive power. 

    Period. 

    To give them any credence is to ignore the plain text of the Constitution. 

    • #14
  15. DrewInWisconsin, Oik Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oik
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    JoelB (View Comment):

    1787Libertarian (View Comment):
    Holding off until after the mid-terms is not aimed at votes this year, but rather aimed at keeping Trump off of the ballot for 24.

    That could actually turn out to be advantageous for conservative-populist Republicans like DeSantis. It could allow the MAGA forces to unify without the baggage (deserved or not) that Trump brings with him. With no orange man, what excuse would the NTers have for not electing conservatives? They had better be careful about what they wish for.

    Good points. GOP: “OK, you took out Trump but now we get to exercise power under your rules. You won’t like it.”

    LOL! The idea of the GOP exercising power is hilarious.

    • #15
  16. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Old Bathos: My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

    This concerns me, too. In fact, I could just see him looking at the boxes and saying, Yeah, just pack it all up. We’ll figure out what we have later. The problem, too, is that he doesn’t like to admit he’s made mistakes.

    • #16
  17. Justin Other Lawyer Coolidge
    Justin Other Lawyer
    @DouglasMyers

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    JoelB (View Comment):

    If he wanted evidence of the Russiagate hoax, for example, was it not possible to identify and summarize each relevant document and then insist on some secure handling by the archive to prevent surreptitious destruction or removal by the conspirators?

    If the FBI can’t be trusted, can the archive?

    A very detailed inventory and secure access would make it tough for the bad guys–selective removal would become conspicuous. Even a latter-day James Bond-type like Sandy Berger (yes, it was a joke) could not pull that sort of thing off (speaking of Democrats with no fear of felony jail time).

    Agreed.  I can’t help but to think that Trump’s insistence on keeping the documents is best explained by passive-aggressiveness.  They’re his documents (in his mind), and he doesn’t want to return them.  And no one can make him.  Until he takes it too far.  It’s actually pretty sad to watch.

    • #17
  18. Justin Other Lawyer Coolidge
    Justin Other Lawyer
    @DouglasMyers

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    I have the gnawing suspicion that Trump did not follow legal advice as to how to resolve this and has given an opening to his enemies.

    I find this hard to believe.  /sarcasm/

     

    **Edit:  Sorry–repeated @danok1‘s comment above.

    • #18
  19. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Old Bathos: But that will not happen.  There will likely be a GOP President other than Trump and a GOP Congress but the left will recede only slightly, whine continuously, persist in rhetorical attacks, and somehow impose a near-mandatory amnesia about their crimes and atrocities on the grounds that it would be “extreme” or “divisive” or “partisan” even to point out their foul, recent history much less impose accountability.  And Republicans will be too polite and say that they are “looking forward, not backward” and we will limp along until the left launches its next new offensive from their unmolested sanctuaries.

    Also, day and night will alternate in sequence. 

    • #19
  20. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Old Bathos: My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

    This concerns me, too. In fact, I could just see him looking at the boxes and saying, Yeah, just pack it all up. We’ll figure out what we have later. The problem, too, is that he doesn’t like to admit he’s made mistakes.

    But that does not matter.

    Y’all are playing their game. 

    He was President of the United States of America. He was the unitary executive. If he ordered the documents packed up and taken, he did not violate security rules, because as President he cannot violate security rules. They do not apply to him.  There is no mistake here. 

     

    • #20
  21. Justin Other Lawyer Coolidge
    Justin Other Lawyer
    @DouglasMyers

    MarciN (View Comment):

    Old Bathos:

    Why did Trump hang onto that material? Even conceding his authority to declassify, the bulk of that stuff is still the property of the archive. If he wanted evidence of the Russiagate hoax, for example, was it not possible to identify and summarize each relevant document and then insist on some secure handling by the archive to prevent surreptitious destruction or removal by the conspirators?

    My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

    I think it’s just that he had to pack up in a hurry.

    I don’t think this is a good excuse at this point.  I realize there are facts still to be determined, but it seems very likely that Trump has been unwilling to go through the documents and turn over any particularly sensitive material.  He’s been (very much like HRC) stonewalling and delaying for more than a year.  I have a hunch he has taken it too far.

    • #21
  22. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    Good points.  GOP:  “OK, you took out Trump but now we get to exercise power under your rules.  You won’t like it.” 

    GOPe: “Cool! Who should we take out next!”

    • #22
  23. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Old Bathos: My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

    This concerns me, too. In fact, I could just see him looking at the boxes and saying, Yeah, just pack it all up. We’ll figure out what we have later. The problem, too, is that he doesn’t like to admit he’s made mistakes.

    As opposed to Biden? Hillary? Obama? This separates him from the rest how?

    • #23
  24. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Old Bathos: My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

    This concerns me, too. In fact, I could just see him looking at the boxes and saying, Yeah, just pack it all up. We’ll figure out what we have later. The problem, too, is that he doesn’t like to admit he’s made mistakes.

    But that does not matter.

    Y’all are playing their game.

    He was President of the United States of America. He was the unitary executive. If he ordered the documents packed up and taken, he did not violate security rules, because as President he cannot violate security rules. They do not apply to him. There is no mistake here.

    By not dealing with this in some orderly way, Trump gave them an opening to go before a grand jury to get a subpoena for the docs.  Even if the courts ultimately decide that Trump was not (and could not have been) in violation of laws governing classified material, defiance or an untruthful response to a subpoena is still breaking the law.  That is how they are trying to get him–obstruction.  Those laws do apply to him. That is what is going on here.

    • #24
  25. Justin Other Lawyer Coolidge
    Justin Other Lawyer
    @DouglasMyers

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Old Bathos: My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

    This concerns me, too. In fact, I could just see him looking at the boxes and saying, Yeah, just pack it all up. We’ll figure out what we have later. The problem, too, is that he doesn’t like to admit he’s made mistakes.

    But that does not matter.

    Y’all are playing their game.

    He was President of the United States of America. He was the unitary executive. If he ordered the documents packed up and taken, he did not violate security rules, because as President he cannot violate security rules. They do not apply to him. There is no mistake here.

     

    I don’t think this is necessarily correct.  Let’s play out a scenario, for the sake of argument:

    1. Let’s assume that on Jan. 15, 2021, Trump was given a list of spies working for the US within China.
    2. Trump on purpose or inadvertently (doesn’t matter for our purposes) keeps the document with his files.
    3. Trump declares all the files “declassified”.
    4. This does not change the fact that the information on that paper is highly sensitive and should not be made public.
    5. The current administration knows Trump has the document and wants it back.  
    6. As the current administration, it at least arguably has the authority to demand the document back.
    7. The fact that Trump (in this hypo) did not do something unconstitutional does not mean he hasn’t done something culpable or reckless.
    8. Further, his ongoing intransigence could turn into actual obstruction of justice.

    If you don’t buy this, just imagine it’s Jan. 2025 and insert Biden for Trump and imagine a new DeSantis administration.  It proves too little to argue the unitary executive.  Trump may well have walked himself into a heap of trouble that he could have avoided (I don’t know this yet, but it is looking that way).

    • #25
  26. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    Justin Other Lawyer (View Comment):

    MarciN (View Comment):

    Old Bathos:

    Why did Trump hang onto that material? Even conceding his authority to declassify, the bulk of that stuff is still the property of the archive. If he wanted evidence of the Russiagate hoax, for example, was it not possible to identify and summarize each relevant document and then insist on some secure handling by the archive to prevent surreptitious destruction or removal by the conspirators?

    My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

    I think it’s just that he had to pack up in a hurry.

    I don’t think this is a good excuse at this point. I realize there are facts still to be determined, but it seems very likely that Trump has been unwilling to go through the documents and turn over any particularly sensitive material. He’s been (very much like HRC) stonewalling and delaying for more than a year. I have a hunch he has taken it too far.

    Legal stuff takes an enormous amount of time. Neither he nor his lawyers know what will be or won’t be important yet. I’m sure Trump has outstanding lawyers, and they will want everything he can put his hands on.

    All he has to work with are those papers. These types of cases can go on for years. Look at what the state of New York has been doing to him. It’s insane.

    And if I were his lawyers, I’d be really concerned about giving the documents to anyone because they could alter them somehow or claim they never existed.

    • #26
  27. DrewInWisconsin, Oik Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oik
    @DrewInWisconsin

    They gonna go break down Obama’s door (wherever he’s hiding these days) and scoop up all the documents he took or nah?

    • #27
  28. 1787Libertarian Member
    1787Libertarian
    @

    Justin Other Lawyer (View Comment) him. There is no mistake here.

    I don’t think this is necessarily correct. Let’s play out a scenario, for the sake of argument:

    1. Let’s assume that on Jan. 15, 2021, Trump was given a list of spies working for the US within China.
    2. Trump on purpose or inadvertently (doesn’t matter for our purposes) keeps the document with his files.
    3. Trump declares all the files “declassified”.
    4. This does not change the fact that the information on that paper is highly sensitive and should not be made public.
    5. The current administration knows Trump has the document and wants it back.
    6. As the current administration, it at least arguably has the authority to demand the document back.
    7. The fact that Trump (in this hypo) did not do something unconstitutional does not mean he hasn’t done something culpable or reckless.
    8. Further, his ongoing intransigence could turn into actual obstruction of justice.

    If you don’t buy this, just imagine it’s Jan. 2025 and insert Biden for Trump and imagine a new DeSantis administration. It proves too little to argue the unitary executive. Trump may well have walked himself into a heap of trouble that he could have avoided (I don’t know this yet, but it is looking that way).

    I held a Top Secret clearance through the Department of Defense from 2005 to 2019, first as a cryptologic technician in the US Navy and then as an intelligence analyst/defense contractor. What your scenario points to is what is known as “sources and methods” of intelligence. In many respects this is what gets classified and not the substance of what is reported by field operatives. Generally speaking, the “sources and methods” of intelligence gathering is NOT really mentioned in intelligence assessments that make it to policy makers other than when providing a confidence score of the information on which the assessment is based. So in reality, Trump would likely never get a list of agents inside a targeted foreign country unless he was given the raw intelligence reports–which is very unlikely.

    Edit: changed “system” to “sources” due my memory having been refreshed.

    • #28
  29. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    Justin Other Lawyer (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Old Bathos: My concern is that Trump’s reasons for hanging onto that material may turn out to be not very cogent, much less exculpatory and it will have needlessly opened him up to his enemies.

    This concerns me, too. In fact, I could just see him looking at the boxes and saying, Yeah, just pack it all up. We’ll figure out what we have later. The problem, too, is that he doesn’t like to admit he’s made mistakes.

    But that does not matter.

    Y’all are playing their game.

    He was President of the United States of America. He was the unitary executive. If he ordered the documents packed up and taken, he did not violate security rules, because as President he cannot violate security rules. They do not apply to him. There is no mistake here.

     

    I don’t think this is necessarily correct. Let’s play out a scenario, for the sake of argument:

    1. Let’s assume that on Jan. 15, 2021, Trump was given a list of spies working for the US within China.
    2. Trump on purpose or inadvertently (doesn’t matter for our purposes) keeps the document with his files.
    3. Trump declares all the files “declassified”.
    4. This does not change the fact that the information on that paper is highly sensitive and should not be made public.
    5. The current administration knows Trump has the document and wants it back.
    6. As the current administration, it at least arguably has the authority to demand the document back.
    7. The fact that Trump (in this hypo) did not do something unconstitutional does not mean he hasn’t done something culpable or reckless.
    8. Further, his ongoing intransigence could turn into actual obstruction of justice.

    If you don’t buy this, just imagine it’s Jan. 2025 and insert Biden for Trump and imagine a new DeSantis administration. It proves too little to argue the unitary executive. Trump may well have walked himself into a heap of trouble that he could have avoided (I don’t know this yet, but it is looking that way).

    Yes. As I mentioned in another thread, check out the Aldrich Ames case from the early 1990s. 

    • #29
  30. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    DrewInWisconsin, Oik (View Comment):

    They gonna go break down Obama’s door (wherever he’s hiding these days) and scoop up all the documents he took or nah?

    Hillary put the name of a covert asset in an unclassified e-mail. To be fair about it, the repubs left the name in plain view when they pointed that out. I don’t like to think about what probably happened to that “asset”. And what happened to Hillary? Not a [redacted] thing. 

    • #30
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