Patterico's Pontifications


President Trump Today: Potential Charges Or Impeachment “Totally Ridiculous”

Filed under: General — Dana @ 3:08 pm

[guest post by Dana]

After tweeting early this morning that “this is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!,” President Trump said at a press conference this afternoon that he had not asked James Comey to “end his investigation into Russia’s involvement in the 2016 election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign”:

“Well, I respect the move but the entire thing has been a witch hunt,” Trump said when asked about the investigation. “There is no collusion between certainly myself and my campaign. But I can always speak for myself and the Russians, zero. I think it divides the country, I think we have a very divided country because of that and many other things. So I can tell you that we want to bring this great country of ours together.”

Trump called talk of potential criminal charges or impeachment “totally ridiculous.”

He also said he thought that Comey’s firing would be bipartisan.

“I think it is totally ridiculous. Everyone thinks so,” he said when asked whether he ever thought he did something recently that merited criminal charges or impeachment.

“Director Comey was very unpopular with most people,” he said. “I actually thought when I made that decision, and I also got a very, very strong recommendation, as you know, from the Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. When I made that decision I actually thought it would be a bipartisan decision because you look at all of the people on the Democratic side, not only the Republican side, that were saying such terrible thing about Director Comey.”

Meanwhile, there is a video clip making the rounds today of James Comey testifying that he had never been “told to stop” an FBI investigation for political reasons:


106 Responses to “President Trump Today: Potential Charges Or Impeachment “Totally Ridiculous””

  1. Hello.

    Dana (023079)

  2. I’d like to know when our nation’s law enforcement is going to go after the nest of snakes that is leaking classified info daily (all felonies) and unmasking American citizens? They are either coming from/being done by Capitol Hill or the NSA. Where’s the Special Counsel?

    Colonel Haiku (ef3fae)

  3. The uni-party heads told the republican leaders – we will give you Gorsuch, you sacrifice Trump.

    mg (31009b)

  4. @2. Haiku! Gesundheit. Wipe your nose. Gee, maybe the GOP should form a secret group of dedicated patriots to do just that…. here’s a good code name for them: The Plumbers.

    Oh, wait– oops.

    “Obviously crime pays or there’d be no crime.”- G. Gordon Liddy, convicted Watergate “Plumber” and [surprise] former Fox News contributor.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  5. Time for Occupy your congress critters office safe space.

    mg (31009b)

  6. The pattern is pretty well established with our Captain.

    In exasperation, Ol’Dead Fred packed the young Donald off to military school for some discipline.[Likely the source of his fascination w/generals, too.] At middle age, it was a group of exasperated bankers who had to discipline The Donald into living on an allowance and now, an exasperated DOJ is disciplining the aging Donald w/a Special Counsel looking over his shoulder.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  7. He did think the firing of Comey would be taken well by Democrats, but probably not all by himself. That part’s true.

    He did probably did ask for Comey to end the investigation of Flynn with no charges – but that’s not the same thing as the Russian investigation, and as a matter of fact, Comey did, within a day or two.

    Washington (CNN) — The FBI is not expected to pursue any charges against former national security adviser Michael Flynn regarding a phone call with Russia’s ambassador, barring new information that changes what they know, law enforcement officials told CNN Thursday…

    ….Flynn initially told investigators sanctions were not discussed. But FBI agents challenged him, asking if he was certain that was his answer. He said he didn’t remember.

    They apparently give everybody the same chance to retract, though.

    Donald Trump seems to be stivkling to that story that the recommendation had something to do with the firing. Rosenstein was brought to Trump by Sessions on Monday May 8. Sessions had asked him a leading question maybe, and then brought him to Trump, and Trump and Sessions told him to write it up. Trump had probably been disturbed by Comey’s testimony on May 3, and it may have been something he misunderstood.

    The FBI interviewers believed Flynn was cooperative and provided truthful answers. Although Flynn didn’t remember all of what he talked about, they don’t believe he was intentionally misleading them, the officials say.

    Further, then-acting Attorney General Sally Yates delayed notifying the White House until after Flynn was interviewed. At that point, FBI Director James Comey did not object to notifying the White House counsel.

    Sammy Finkelman (6f9f42)

  8. if it’s on youtube there’s no way the corrupt turdboy can take it back

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  9. “I believe that every human has a finite number of heartbeats. I don’t intend to waste any of mine running around doing exercises.”

    A Donald Trump original?


    It was quipped decades ago by Apollo 11 Astronaut Neil Armstrong, first man on the moon.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  10. So now that they’ve Trumped up a special prosecutor to search for something, what specific laws are they accusing the President of breaking?

    When does trying to overthrow the legally elected President become sedition?

    NJRob (e85a3b)

  11. It is surprising that Trump, as recently as last week, was so trusting in the intellectual honesty of his Democratic Party opponents (enemies, really). Lyin’ Dems!

    ThOR (c9324e)

  12. When one begins to live by habit and by quotation, one has begun to stop living.
    James A Baldwin

    mg (31009b)

  13. Our O’Reilly in exile word for the day is “disavowed”.

    Let see if I can use it in a sentence.

    Ex-director Comey disavowed the anonymous voice reading the imaginary note to the salivating WaPo editor. This gave the media a case of the sad. :(

    papertiger (c8116c)

  14. Is the argument that ‘Ordered’ and ‘asked to cut some slack’ are the same thing?

    There are lots of lawyers in the forum. How hard a time would you have dismissing that one?

    Bob (7373a5)

  15. The Democrats have gone insane (including a couple here) and seem willing to destroy the country to remove Trump. The old expression for this was “Burn down the barn to get rid of the rats.”

    I think part of the really insane Trump hatred is frenzy that Hillary, who everyone knew was the next president and The First Woman President, actually lost and not to a black man with creased pants and no “negro dialect” to quote Harry Reid.

    Trump was a known quantity. His appeal to the “Deplorables” was discounted as something only Oprah could understand.

    His agenda is right out of the “right wing” playbook. Reduce illegal immigration and Muslim immigration, both of which violate “progressive” rules.

    I think it was not Trump’s great qualities that brought about his win.

    It was that he was THE ONLY person who expressed any interest in the depression in the white middle class. Mostly male but not all.

    The other big factor was that, in spite of sarcastic comments, he DID NOT NEED the donor class. He was able to self fund in addition to a real grass roots effort by many.

    He threatens the Deep State and the donor class. Can he survive ? I don’t know.

    He is not going to be impeached. He might be assassinated. I hope he still has his personal security around him.

    Indira Gandhi learned about that too late.

    Mike K (f469ea)

  16. The template seemed to right out of well known spy novelist

    narciso (d1f714)

  17. There are lots of lawyers in the forum. How hard a time would you have dismissing that one?
    The problem is not what was supposedly asked, but who supposedly did the asking.

    If I ask Patterico to go easy on one of his prosecutees, I may be out of line, but in general nothing more. Patterico is free to tell me to go to The Really Hot Place and ignore me.

    If one of his superiors made the same request in the same words, it’s a different story, especially if the superior in question is able to Make Life Difficult for Patterico if the request is not complied with. But even then it may not amount to actual “obstruction of justice”.

    kishnevi (1b8c69)

  18. Almost before the celebration cake was finished trump had to deal with the bogus dhs finding and the dodgy dossier, that can’t have say well with him

    narciso (d1f714)

  19. 16. The point is, Indira Gandhi was killed by her official security. Pakistan was, at that time, making some sikhs into terrorists, and her guards were principally Sikhs, I think. sponsers of terrorism have since concentrated exclusively on Moslems.

    On 31 October 1984, Indira Gandhi, Prime Minister of India, was killed by her Sikh bodyguards. The assassination sparked four days of riots that left more than 8,000 Indian Sikhs dead in revenge attacks.,,

    Memers of her Congress Party did that.

    She wss killed by two bodyguards. One of them was one of her favorite guards. whom she had known for ten years. (anotehr was new) Intelligence had already wanted to remove all her Sikh
    bodyguards, but it is alleged that R. K. Dhawan, Mrs. Gandhi’s secretary, overruled them, and later on he got accused of being part of a conspiracy.

    The assasination was motivated by Operatoon Blue star, in which the Indian army defeated sikh separatists.

    Sikh terrorists are long gone now. Pakistan has gone on to other things.

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)

  20. A superior can tell a subordinate not to be a Javert — an overzealous “hot dog” — whether they’re prosecutors or police. If he can’t, who can?

    Any impropriety is created by the motives of the superior. To further the interests of justice or to obstruct justice?

    nk (dbc370)

  21. The last two paragraphs at comment 7 are quotations from the CNN article.

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)

  22. Comey’s firing should have been bipartisan. But the Democrat’s full-bore intifada against Trump made that impossible.

    He could announce Middle-East peace, discovery of free, non-polluting energy or African-American reparations and the Democrats would attack him for it.

    Nothing with regard to Trump can be bi-partisan, and any Democrat who makes that mistake will be humbled.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  23. 13…

    Looks like you may have shortened DCSCA’s life there, mg. Either that or he went to the F-ing movies.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  24. I wonder how much of this could have been avoided if Trump had better political instincts?

    AZ Bob (f7a491)

  25. But he wouldn’t have been Trump.

    AZ Bob (f7a491)

  26. Trump has political instinct but no self control.

    AZ Bob (f7a491)

  27. Now on the culture it took till the mid is for the crazy Christics to saturate their conspiracy tj, the t4eories into media everything from Cagney and lacey to Miami vice (lethal weapon hax an odd spin, the t 4 rage has spread rapidly within months homeland was over come, so did Quantico, and designated survivor, which basically pulled a jericho.

    narciso (d1f714)

  28. I’m saying a prayer, narciso… a prayer for the whole world.

    It looks like it’s time to praise the God of all mankind, drink teh root beer, and let the world be the world.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  29. Perhaps Dana or our host would like to post about this… this being what Guy Benson has found…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  30. It was noted in the update

    The press seems to be imitating what happened in Malaysia, directed against opposition candidate Anwar Ibrahim, the translation was the grapevine

    narciso (d1f714)

  31. We don’t get to choose the world we live in.

    You’ve got a full plate.

    That’s usin’ your old noggin, Al. Getcha self some relief. Let the world do it’s own

    papertiger (c8116c)

  32. Lol… I was too busy watching Godzilla, King of the Monsters. And praying.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  33. Was that one of classic 70s films, I saw some of the latter ones in the 90s and even though the effects were better they were no where as good.

    narciso (d1f714)

  34. 34 – “I was too busy watching Godzilla, King of the Monsters. And praying.”

    I recorded the original for my Pop a few weeks ago but nothin’ doin, he wanted Ray Burr.

    We enjoyed it tonight, the film that gave me nightmares when I saw it on LA tv in the early 60s.

    harkin (a49e60)

  35. Take Pacific rim, which was del toro’ s odd tribute to the genre, to new fangled:

    narciso (d1f714)

  36. With a purposeful grimace and a terrible sound, he pulls the spitting high tension wires down.

    [YouTube – the original when MTV was a half hour in the afternoon on Fox version]

    You’re welcome.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  37. We enjoyed it tonight, the film that gave me nightmares when I saw it on LA tv in the early 60s.

    harkin (a49e60) — 5/18/2017 @ 8:35 pm

    Would that have been the Million Dollar Movie that channel 9 (I think) used to run probably 6 times on the weekend or on channel 11’s “Chiller”… “where unspeakable monsters roam… and terror is the order of the day”, harkin?

    No… never watched ’em… lol

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  38. Raymond Burr version, 1956 – I think – narciso.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  39. Now watching replay of VDH on Tucker’s show. Outstanding.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  40. Good viewing for #NeverTrump. They’d be enlightened by Mr. Hanson.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  41. The Herodotus of our time, is that two extravagant?

    narciso (d1f714)

  42. No, I’m a big fan. Have been for over 20 years.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  43. Only knew of him since he have a speech at a bookstore right after sebtember 11th

    narciso (d1f714)

  44. What is different between what the democratic left is doing to Trump and what Maduro had the Venezuelan Supreme Court do to their legislature?

    NJRob (520017)

  45. What is different between what the democratic left is doing to Trump and what Tonya Harding’s ex husband did to Nancy Kerrigan?

    James Comey is the Jeff Gillooly of the democratic party.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  46. @24. Haiku! Gesundheit.

    Double feature! ‘All The President’s Men’ & ‘The Final Days.’

    Spoiler alert- The Republican did it.

    @34. Watched it, as well. Good flick although a personal favorite, The Giant Behemoth caps the evening. Bad breath in dinosaurs…

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  47. @34- Postscript. Gene Evans was vastly underrated.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  48. QUOTATION, n. The act of repeating erroneously the words of another. The words erroneously repeated.
    Ambrose Bierce, The devils dictionary.

    mg (31009b)

  49. The devil can quote scripture for his purpose.
    William Shakespeare

    mg (31009b)

  50. Thanks, Haiku, for that link that has Comey, of all people, completely exonerating Trump. (If anything, Comey’s statement, combined with what his pal at the Bureau phoned in to the NYT, makes me even more deeply suspicious of Comey – I’m hoping Mueller cast a wide net).

    Squirrel, after squirrel, after squirrel, when will this crowd ever learn: Never trust content from the WaPo, NYT, AP, etc., etc., etc. . . . At what point will the #NeverTrumpers realize – I presume never – that hysteria is no substitute for reason and that hate is a very ugly thing.

    There is a ratcheting up process that Trump critics go through that is extraordinary. Every failed criticism is followed by another, new criticism that is more shrill and less rational than the previous. Over and over and over again this happens and the fury mounts with every pathetic iteration. I see no end in sight. It is a grossly destructive dynamic. The final resort, I fear, will be assassination.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  51. Republicans are cultural destroyers that contribute zero. Their only power is to train-wreck, never to make things better.

    mg (31009b)

  52. Which one of you invented the word blogisphere? I forget his name, but I’ve read his stuff.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  53. This is the results of speech codes and copyrights.

    Jean-Michel Basquiat painting sells for $110 million, breaks record

    papertiger (c8116c)

  54. And government enforced politeness.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  55. 51.The devil can quote scripture for his purpose.
    William Shakespeare

    And mg can quote William Shakespeare for his.

    Rev.Hoagie® (630eca)

  56. And James said ‘even the demons believe’ so where in the worlc is this memo,

    narciso (d1f714)

  57. 51.The devil can quote scripture for his purpose.
    William Shakespeare

    58.And mg can quote William Shakespeare for his.
    Rev.Hoagie® (630eca) — 5/19/2017 @ 5:46 am

    And felipe gets in on the action! Red rover, red rover.

    felipe (b5e0f4)

  58. Ex-director Comey disavowed the anonymous voice reading the imaginary note to the salivating WaPo editor. This gave the media a case of the sad.

    Posting dreams from your afternoon nap now, papertiger? You did succeed in making me look for it, but it’s not April 1.

    nk (dbc370)

  59. send DOSCA right over.

    mg (31009b)

  60. Bill Quick claims he named the “blogosphere,” mg, but I think it was actually Brad L Graham.

    DRJ (15874d)

  61. Wait, sorry. That was for papertiger, not mg.

    DRJ (15874d)

  62. Colonel Haiku 31, that video was part of Dana’s original even-handed post. Remember that the next time you claim Trump critics are being unfair.

    DRJ (15874d)

  63. And that video does undercut claiming Trump was obstructing justice for political reasons, but what if his reason for interfering was to avoid criminal investigations?

    DRJ (15874d)

  64. Even Bill Quick is a plagiarist?

    Is nothing sacred?” [jpg]

    It offends me more because now I’ll have to try and remember it.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  65. @#67

    Come on.

    To this day nobody has even seen a Comey’s memo. All we’ve had so far was a third person account from a professional liar.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  66. 39.

    the Million Dollar Movie that channel 9 (I think) used to run

    Channel 9 in New York – WOR – now WWOR (WOR is used now only for the radio station) used to run a Million Dollar movie.

    I think every movie is a million dollar movie, or became so after a time.

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)

  67. DRJ… yes, I noted that I’d missed seeing it, a pleasant surprise. Please note that the next time you feel the need.

    Colonel Haiku (ef3fae)

  68. 43. narciso (d1f714) — 5/18/2017 @ 9:06 pm

    The Herodotus of our time

    Herodotus was a liar, and he sought to write the Jews out of history, probably at the instigation of Egyptian priests, but that wasn’t the only thing he did, just the biggest.

    He did a lot of inside jokes though, so you can tell what he knew.

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)

  69. 70… channel 9 in SoCal was KHJ-TV, I believe. It was the one us kids watched to see the latest Japanes sci-to flicks and, later, for Sam Riddle and “Boss City” music/dancin’/prancin’/mincin’…

    Colonel Haiku (ef3fae)

  70. “HMM: Senate Demands White House Tapes, Comey Memos On Just About Everyone. “Interesting that they also demand all the ‘Hillary’ related memos too… If Comey ‘memorialized’ all his interactions – like he said he did for the Trump memo – then he must have the ones discussed with Obama, Lynch, Yates etc… regarding the Clinton case?”

    Colonel Haiku (ef3fae)

  71. Posting dreams from your afternoon nap now, papertiger?

    You don’t read the post either?

    The video nk. Look at the video. You don’t even really have to watch it. The title link gives all the relevant info.

    If you need hand holding between the dots, in this mysterious memo, this nebulous memo, claimed by a faceless disembodied voice on an untracible burner phone, as relayed by a professional liar, IF [bold should be accompanied by double sized lettering just to convey the proper effect] IF such a memo exists, and IF Comey was the author, and IF it says President Trump tried to coerce Comey to drop an investigation, then Comey has perjured himself to congress, and violated his office by not reporting a crime to the DoJ.

    Course it’s small potatoes compared to the crimes he committed on CSPAN for Hillary, but for the sake of argument let us pretend for a minute the sob wasn’t a bought out [edit] who would sell out his office, God, and countrymen, for a half can of bacon grease.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  72. @ Col. Haiku,

    Perhaps Dana or our host would like to post about this… this being what Guy Benson has found…

    I included this video in the original post. I do not have PTD (or whatever the current slight is for those not fans of this president) nor am I making any concerted efforts to purposely smear him without making an effort to look at both sides of this or any other issue when posting about it. However, if I had not included the video in the original post, as much as you should not assume that its non-inclusion was intentional (to not show another important piece of the puzzle that may or may not help the president), would not mean that it was done to hide said info. It just might mean that I had not yet seen it. In which case, to your comment quoted above, I would watch the video, post it and say “thank you” for pointing it out.

    Dana (023079)

  73. Caught up on rest of thread, see your comment at 71 now. I too missed your clarification at 34(?)… wasn’t in the convo, so it wasn’t too clear. But 76 still stands as a sort of personal rule of thumb.

    Dana (023079)

  74. 75. papertiger (c8116c) — 5/19/2017 @ 7:12 am

    this nebulous memo, claimed by a faceless disembodied voice on an untracible burner phone, as relayed by a professional liar,

    The memo probably exists, because if it doesn’t the whole thing will probably implode before it can do any harm to Trump (although it maybe did help get a special prosecutor named) but the problem is this: Whatever was read, was read out of context, and important parts of it that might shed light on exactly what Trump meant omitted, and, most important, spin offered based on the part that was disclosed – spin that would not work if the people being spun had the entire memo.

    I’m virtually certain of the last point.

    By the way, it isn’t necessarily true at all that Comey had anything to with this massive campaign to get out selected parts of this memo. This memo would have bene left behind at the FBI, and he wouldn’t even have access to it.

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)

  75. Where da disavowal?

    denial of any responsibility or support for something; repudiation.
    “his disavowal of his previous writings”

    I can fantasize that Trump renounced the Presidency. It doesn’t mean there’s a renunciation.

    nk (dbc370)

  76. One of the horse whisperers who didnt understand the purpose and history of military tribunals

    narciso (d1f714)

  77. Victor Davis Hanson interviewed by Tucker Carlson last night…

    Colonel Haiku (ef3fae)

  78. addendum to # 75

    Seth (To Stapleton): Next murder you do on an errand, gotta take off the [edit]in’ badge.

    Stapleton: Not certain I take your inference. And if I do, I’m not sure I like it.

    (Seth takes badge off Stapleton’s lapel and throws it in the mud)

    Nuttall: Leave it there you bought out sonofa[edit].

    papertiger (c8116c)

  79. When Ted Kennedy was penpals with andropov, later on he was working a back channel to the mullahs

    narciso (d1f714)

  80. nk

    You’re way too confuzzled for me to sort out. Hit the showers. Use a sponge.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  81. What seems clear to eme is that Trump was not talking about all possible investigations of Mike Flynn, but only something that was known to him.

    And the thing that was known to him, lying to the FBI, was actually a manufactured case.

    And what’s more, the FBI did indeed let everyone know that Mike Flynn would not be charged with anything a day or two later. (See my link at #7)

    The news media missed this – that the FBI actually did let the case go, as Trump had said he hoped – because they didn’t get the whole memo, and the spin they got is such as to get them to misinterpret the excerpts that were read to them, so nobody is seeing this for what this is.

    Now it’s important that the FBI probably lets most cases like this go, where at the end of the interview, the person being interviewed, told that what he says contradicts other things the FBI thinks it knows, does not re-affirm what he said.

    There was a link somewhere in one of the recent threads here to a case against New York State Senator John Sampson, where the FBI also gave someone the opportunity to retract, except that he didn’t take it. Flynn, on the other hand, said he was unsure afer being informed he contradicted a recording.

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)

  82. There has been nothing to this sammeh, like I say this memo was like the one Jason Leopold promised Krugman, that would prove Tom white had been the architect of the power spikes in California or something.

    narciso (d1f714)

  83. IF it says President Trump tried to coerce Comey to drop an investigation

    It doesn’t say that. Nobody says that it says that (they do imply maybe, that it is inherently co-ercive.)

    Overlooked entirely is that in fact the FBI (which may have already determined this case was going nowhere) decided to leak that fact to the press a day or so affter Trump’s converaation with Comey.

    Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn may skate on some serious legal trouble.

    Flynn misled the FBI about discussing sanctions with a Russian diplomat ahead of President Trump’s inauguration, according to new reports Thursday.

    The denial could have meant criminal charges — lying to FBI agents is a felony — but investigators don’t believe Flynn intentionally lied, according to The Washington Post and CNN…

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)

  84. @ # 78

    Same argument George Noory uses to prove flying saucers, sasquatch, and the chupacabra.

    I’ll be needing to see more than a plaster of a footprint.
    In fact you better bring me the skin, the bones, the whole carcass. E ven then it better be notarized with a complete signed chain of custody.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  85. 77… yes, you seem to have found this Benson thing much earlier than the other sites I frequent, Dana. Good show!

    Colonel Haiku (c230be)

  86. And available for scientific analysis by experts of my choosing.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  87. narciso @86.

    like I say this memo was like the one Jason Leopold promised Krugman, that would prove Tom white had been the architect of the power spikes in California or something.

    What’s that?

    I found this: (the names leopold, White and Krugman are highlighted)

    This concerned an e-mail supposedly sent by White to other Enron insiders ordering them to hide losses (you may remember, the Enron story somehow morphed from being about the way Enron gamed the California electricity market to make money to how Enron was losing a lot of money.)

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)

  88. And ain’t it a [edit]in’ miracle, how the California legislature is doing it’s worst to outlaw coal power, just like Enron wanted to do.

    Who buys these shmucks?

    papertiger (c8116c)

  89. It’s probably worse in New York (in terms of driving up the cost of electricity, and going for what looks good to ignorant environmentalists) although it is almost entirely the doing of the Governor, andrew Cuomo.

    Theer was an editorial about that today in the Wall Street Journal (aprked by a claim that Cuomo actually flouted a law to do what he did)

    He’ shutting down the Indian Point nuclear reactor, preventing fracking, and preventing natural gas pipelines from being built, and meanwhile being widly optimistic in promoting alternative energy sources and a power transmission line for Canadian hydropower, risking therefore blackouts and a price increase in electricity of 1 to 2 cents a kilowatt hour and it’s already well over 20 cents a kilowatt hour.

    In the meantime he arranges for electrricity rate payers to subsidize two nuclear power plants upstate (the alleged problem with Indian Point is the impossibility of evacuating people should something go wrong)

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)

  90. They could be bought by some rich and foolish environmentalists, and maybe theer;s some way to make money off of this.. Short selling? Subsidies for something else?

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)

  91. @70/73- Back in the day it was WOR Ch. 9 in NYC as Sammy likely recalls which piped out The Million Dollar movie– same film five nights in a row– usually, one of the sci-fi monster classics.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  92. Did Putin just release his notes of the meeting Trump held with Lavrov & Kislyak in the Oval Office:

    “I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut job,” Mr. Trump said, according to the document, which was read to The New York Times by an American official. “I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off.”

    Mr. Trump added, “I’m not under investigation.”

    Spartacvs (2db708)

  93. Sammy, at 93: the “we can’t evacuate in a crisis” problem is, IMO, quite real. The reactor is less than thirty miles from New York City, and it’s simply impossible to evacuate NYC in the time you’d have if something went wrong and you needed to evacuate.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  94. Re the latest WaPo leaks about there being a “person of interest” in the White House:

    “Person of interest” doesn’t have a specific defined legal meaning, but it does have a slot in the risk hierarchy, which roughly runs:

    Uninvolved –> Witness –> Person of Interest –> Subject –> Target –> Defendant

    Or as this CLE paper summarizes:

    Using the FBI as a source of reference (it could easily be interchanged with the Internal Revenue Service, Secret Service or Postal In-spection Service), there are generally five reasons an agent will reach out to you. These reasons include that you may be a: (1) witness, (2) “person of interest,” (3) “subject,” (4) “target” or (5) the FBI has a warrant for your arrest.

    This paper cross-references the U.S. Attorneys’ handbook in pointing out that under DoJ rules, “subjects” and “targets” must be explicitly warned that they have been so classified before they’re subpoenaed to testify to a grand jury.

    It’s entirely possible that AG Jeff Sessions, for example, might be a potential witness, and as a witness whose prior public statements (re his contacts with the Russians) are at least arguably inconsistent, that would automatically, I speculate, promote him to the level of “person of interest.” Whether the facts and prosecutorial discretion would support making him a “subject” of a criminal investigation, much less the “target” of one, seems to me vastly less likely.

    But at this point, I’m assessing this newest revelation as “probably smoke and mirrors,” built on speculation and nothing else.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  95. “But at this point, I’m assessing this newest revelation as “probably smoke and mirrors,” built on speculation and nothing else.”

    Beldar (fa637a) — 5/19/2017 @ 12:43 pm

    Sort of describes this whole GD, drip-drip, death by a thousand flea bites circus of a soft coup.

    Colonel Haiku (c230be)

  96. @ # 96

    Do you have a reliable source?

    This is the type of stuff you get from an unreliable source.
    Comey Memo Says Trump Asked Him to End Flynn Investigation

    For example.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  97. Because they’ve been so honest in their coverage, Sparkycuss? Really?!?!

    Colonel Haiku (c230be)

  98. @ NJRob (#11), who asked:

    When does trying to overthrow the legally elected President become sedition?

    As a practical matter, the First Amendment very tightly straight-jackets what can be prosecuted in this arena. Here’s the statute that’s probably most relevant to your question:

    If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both.

    The common element of all these sorts of conspiracies is the agreement to use force to topple the government.

    I think the chances of any kind of successful prosecution of anyone under this statute, for anything related to the current attacks on Trump, are nil. Sedition is, and should be, prosecuted only very, very rarely and only according to its strictest terms. It’s a crime which is used as a means of persecution in many countries with less fidelity to the rule of law, a favorite of dictators, and a source of controversy in the U.S. going back to the founding days of our Republic and the feuding between Jeffersonian Democrats and Adams/Hamilton Federalists.

    It’s not criminal to oppose a president, thank goodness. I don’t want to see “our side” try to change that.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  99. aphrael – US Nuke designs are contained reactors. There is no “something” that could go wrong short of a Nuke bomb striking the reactor that would breach the containment. Fukushima had an earthquake and Tsunami – and 30 miles away is still safe.

    Good primer

    Steven Malynn (4c1400)

  100. @ papertiger: I’m chuckling and occasionally smiling very broadly at your exchanges today with nk, whom I’ve never met but whom I nevertheless greatly respect for his courtroom and criminal justice system experience at the bar. His regular comments are one of the reasons I return to this blog regularly.

    nk is also commendably concise, a virtue of which I’ve rarely been accused. But I’ll nevertheless share my reaction to this May 3 video and the argument by you, papertiger, and others that this is somehow absolutely dispositive of everything, a silver bullet that drops the vampire Trump-haters with a single shot.

    Hypothetically — for purposes of argument — let’s imagine a future trial in which freshly-impeached and unpardoned Donald J. Trump is charged with criminal obstruction of justice. (I’m trying to set to one side, for purposes of argument, all the differences between the a Senate prosecution under articles of impeachment and a federal criminal prosecution.) The key issue in dispute is, of course, Trump’s subjective intent in taking the actions which the prosecution identifies as the various means of the obstruction.

    Such a trial could, hypothetically, be based upon a single action by Trump. Suppose a memo in Trump’s handwriting shows up in which he wrote:

    Today I’m going to fire Jim Comey, and the reason is not anything to do with his handling of the Clinton email controversy, his reckless interpretation of the “extraordinary circumstances” exception to FBI silence on pending investigations, or anything else to do with his general performance as FBI Director. I’m firing him because the FBI is getting too close to something I want kept covered up, and by firing the Director I’ll send a clear message to everyone downstream that they need to back off and this isn’t supposed to be a real investigation (just like when Lynch assigned the Clinton email investigation to the E.D.N.Y. rather than the S.D.N.Y., where the potential defendant had a Sixth Amendment right to be tried and where the crimes were committed). That may not stop the investigation, but it will damn sure slow it down, which is exactly what I want and need.

    That would essentially be a confession of the required corrupt intent. The special counsel wouldn’t need a whole pattern of circumstantial evidence and a timeline to prove intent inferentially. And likewise, he wouldn’t need a series of other similar or consistent actions and statements as circumstantial evidence of intent.

    Without something almost that ridiculously improbable to short-circuit the question of subjective criminal intent, though, I don’t think any prosecutor could get an obstruction of justice conviction based just on the Comey firing, considered by itself.

    However, even if Trump’s comments on the Flynn investigation aren’t sufficient to prove obstruction of justice on their own, they’re still very important — and from Trump’s defense’s standpoint, very problematic! — when considered as part of a pattern of other actions and statements. And every time Trump contradicts himself and strays from what should be the rigorously enforced position of “we welcome the investigation because we’re innocent and we have absolutely no further comment at this time,” he’s giving some future hypothetical prosecutor another data point for the pattern he’s trying to establish.

    Now: Suppose Jim Comey is called as a prosecution witness, to testify about this Feb 14 meeting at which Trump made the “let this go” and “see your way” statements which are purportedly documented contemporaneously in Comey’s memo.

    papertiger, Esq., as counsel for Defendant Donald Trump, attempts to cross-examine Comey by using the video of his testimony from May 3. “Aha!” snorts papertiger, “I’ve caught you in a contradiction, haven’t I?”

    “No,” says Comey calmly, “because when I said that on May 3, I didn’t know anything at all about data points 2-373 in Government Demonstrative Exhibit No. 4 (where the prosecutors have laid out a bunch of much more recent acts and statements as part of the pattern). Most importantly, when I said that on May 3, I didn’t yet know that Trump was going to go beyond just this inappropriate jawboning to the point of actually firing me. That’s when he went beyond being inappropriate and became actively and openly obstructive. And that, of course, makes me reevaluate the benefit of the doubt I gave to the POTUS before then, whether we’re talking about the Feb 14 meeting or the May 3 testimony.”

    At which point the trial is interrupted — Trump himself leaps to his feet and asks for a short recess so he can replace papertiger, Esq., with someone who’s actually tried to cross-examine a clever, hostile, experienced witness who’s been laying a paper trail for years and knows how to do it to best personal advantage.

    A witness like Comey, in other words, can take your straightforward “disavowed” argument and ram it sideways back down your throat.

    This video, in other words, is no more fatal to a hypothetical future obstruction of justice prosecution than the conceded fact that immediately after the Feb 14 meeting, Comey merely wrote a file memo rather than ringing every alarm bell in Washington. Amateurs view this kind of fact as a “silver bullet” that ends all discussion. An experienced advocate like nk, however, finds that amusingly naive and almost certain to backfire.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  101. Defendant? Pish posh. Comey served at the pleasure of the President. Mr Trump can fire him with or without reason at his own discretion.

    And we have quite a trail of paper defining the character of James Comey built up already. No need to invent imaginary memos or resort to false statements, conjured to sell newspapers, purporting to be from my client.

    My list of witnesses will include John Ashcroft, and Alberto Gonzales to tell a story of a certain conniving shyster with a pattern of colluding with high level democrats, lying about events while hiding in the shadow to circumvent the will of the people, and his confederates bragging about it later to newsmen.

    Also on my list will be the prosecutors who brought charges against Kristian Saucier of Arlington, Vermont, to give some choice opinions about intent and how it weighs against bringing home and the free distribution of classified documents on and by your home brewed computer.

    I’m liking this case except for using me as the lawyer.

    papertiger (c8116c)


    The Donald’s gonna have one sweet ride to Saudi Arabia. The plane’s not bad either.

    Orange hair; orange leather.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

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