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Why Criminal Referrals Against Trump Seem Pointless, Unlikely to Prevent Him From Running in 2024

By Ekaterina Blinova – Samizdat – 21.12.2022

On December 19, the House Select Committee on the January 6 attack voted on criminal referrals against ex-President Donald Trump to the Department of Justice. The charges include inciting an insurrection, conspiracy to defraud the US, conspiracy to make false statement to the federal government, and obstructing a government proceeding.

“The US congressional inquiry into the last Capitol riots concerning ex-President Donald Trump is as credible as Russiagate concerning the alleged collusion of the Russian government with Donald Trump ahead of the 2016 US presidential election. (…) These charges serve the same purpose,” Adriel Kasonta, a London-based foreign affairs analyst, founder of AK Consultancy, and former chairman of the International Affairs Committee at the Bow Group, told Sputnik.

The Democratic-led panel on the January 6 attack was formed on July 1, 2021. The endeavor was kicked off after the Dems’ attempt to impeach Trump on the charge of “inciting insurrection” for his role in the January 6 riots spectacularly failed after the Senate acquitted him in February 2021.

The protests erupted in Washington, DC on January 6, 2021, as Trump supporters sought to prevent the US Congress from certifying the election results which, according to demonstrators, were rigged and thus illegal.

The committee’s initial goal was to hold former President Trump accountable for what the panelists described as a multipart conspiratorial enterprise against the duly elected president, Joe Biden. Since its inception, the committee has come under fierce criticism from the GOP over apparent partisanship. House Democrats enlisted just two Republicans on their panel’s board, both of whom are famously anti-Trump and anti-MAGA.

The panel investigated the January 6 protests in Washington, DC in parallel with the Justice Department, which has arrested at least 964 people over the last two years.

After the months-long probe, the Democratic panelists presented their case to the DoJ calling on the federal government to indict the ex-president on four charges, including inciting insurrection. The question is whether the Justice Department will act on the committee’s recommendations.

“The criminal referral being handed down by the sham J6 Committee is on its face a national embarrassment to any objective lawyer,” Marc Little, a California-based attorney and political commentator, told Sputnik. “To find probable cause that a crime has been committed, the prosecutor must prove intent to commit the crime.”

“The evidence in the public record is that President Trump offered the National Guard to protect the Capitol and his words to his supporters to proceed peacefully, directly destroying the committee’s findings. (One would think not one of them had a legal background.) Moreover, before this committee was established, the FBI found the former president had no connection to the lawless activity that occurred on January 6, 2021. That was ignored by the sham committee,” Little pointed out.

Four Reasons Why the Panel’s Charges May Not Work

A number of US conservative legal experts have already shared their views with regard to the case, and suggested that no reasonable prosecutor would bring Trump’s case.

First, the J6 failed to make a compelling criminal case against Trump, according to conservative lawyers. The Democratic panelists have not presented any substantial new evidence of criminal conduct by Trump, but actually repeated the same arguments that they previously put forward. While repetition is called the mother of study, it is “not the mother of proof,” legal observers noted.

Second, the committee failed to establish that Trump had masterminded an “insurrection.” While there indeed was a riot in Washington, DC, there is no “criminally actionable nexus” between the former president and violence, legal observers argue. Furthermore, none of the arrested January Sixers have been charged with the federal offense of “insurrection” by the DoJ so far, according to lawyers.

In addition to that, over the past two years the DoJ has fallen short of accusing Trump of any crime related to the January 6 protests and has not even referred to the former president as an indicted co-conspirator. Therefore, it’s almost impossible to convict Trump of instigating insurrection or inciting violence, especially given that it is well documented that the former president called on his supporters to protest “peacefully” on January 6, 2021.

While Trump could have been a “pretext” for the Capitol protests, he wasn’t a “catalyst,” according to conservative lawyers. If there is no direct linkage between Trump and the protesters, who disrupted the congressional session on January 6, it would be hard to convict the ex-president of “obstructing” the official proceedings of the United States government on that day.

Third, when it comes to Trump’s alleged defrauding of the US, legal observers suggest that it would be similarly hard to prove. The charge is related to Trump’s reliance on a memo written by American attorney John Eastman, who suggested days before January 6, 2021 that then-Vice President Mike Pence had the authority to refuse to count state-certified electoral votes that had been cast for Joe Biden.

According to US legal observers, Eastman’s memo is likely to be treated by the DoJ as a “fanciful legal theory,” but not as “fraud.” It’s not actually a crime to suggest a legal theory in a system where the constitution guarantees free expression of ideas, they argue.

Fourth, the January 6 committee also recommended that the former president be prosecuted for “making or abetting false statements” with regard to “alternative electors” picked by Trump supporters in some swing states won by Biden. According to lawyers, the Trump electors “plausibly” called themselves “contingent,” not fake.

The alternative electors were not officially certified in their respective states. Therefore, they were not seen as legitimate electors and, subsequently, nobody in the US Congress planned to count their votes. Given that, it would pose a serious challenge for prosecutors to prove that the Trump supporters’ attempt to pick “contingent electors” resulted in “actionable false statements,” according to legal observers.

On top of that, any attempt by the DoJ to tighten the screws on Trump would be seen by everyone as efforts by the Biden administration to get rid of a contender ahead of the 2024 race, especially given that Trump has already tossed his hat in the ring.

The panel’s attempt to indict the former president is most likely doomed, according to conservative lawyers. So why are the Dems pushing ahead with these charges nevertheless?

Dems’ Effort to Disrupt Trump’s Election Bid Likely to Fail

“People were involved in prosecuting Donald Trump, the same as with the Russiagate and the alleged collusion with Russia, which was a total farce,” said Kasonta. “Doing what they can in order to discredit Donald Trump, because they know that they can’t win with Donald Trump, because he’s on the low side. He knows that he’s not guilty. And the people who are charging him also know that he’s not guilty. But the purpose of this is the same as with theatrical performance. So they need to have this performance to seed a doubt in the hearts and minds of a certain level of American citizens. And with certain people who are weak-minded or people who don’t care that much about truth, it will succeed.”

According to Kasonta, the crux of the matter is that Donald Trump is “fighting with not only the elites and the blob in the United States,” but with “international global liberal elites in other countries, who want to see a continuation of this liberal international order.”

Trump has been in the so-called “international blob’s” crosshairs since day one of his presidency, according to Sputnik’s interlocutors.

Earlier, US Attorney General Merrick Garland named Jack Smith, a former war crimes prosecutor, special counsel in two cases involving Trump: the first examines the US president’s role in the lead up to January 6; the second concerns the ex-president’s decision to retain sensitive government documents at his home in Florida.

“It would not be fair to any discussion about the special prosecutor and his scope of work without taking the unprecedented and documented illegal spying on then-candidate and President Trump, lying to the FISA court to spy on Trump’s campaign, the two impeachment hearings that failed in their goal to remove the president, along with the Mueller Probe that came up ‘light’ and with no criminal charges. Because of the legacy media here, most people are simply unaware of the travesty of this behavior,” argued Little.

“When you review the totality of the partisan attacks against President Trump, you must view the unprecedented raid of his home over his alleged unlawful retention of some presidential records in the same category of rabid Trump haters that seem to have a very serious reason to prevent him from returning to the presidency or simply have nothing better to do,” the lawyer continued.

However, these attempts are unlikely to prevent Trump from running for president in 2024, presumed Little: “Even if convicted (and not in jail), there is no bar to Mr. Trump being elected president again,” he said.

As for Trump’s base, it’s highly unlikely that his supporters will stop backing him even if the Biden administration, the Dems, and Republicans in Name Only (RINOs) further increase the pressure on the former president, the observers concluded.

December 23, 2022 - Posted by | Civil Liberties | ,

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