Tuesday, September 17, 2019
Miles from the Mainstream
D. R. ZUKERMAN, proprietor

Will We Ever Know What Russiagate Was All About?

May 19, 2019 --

Well, whatever it was about, The Mueller Report, appearing in different editions, has made The New York Times best seller list. The Washington Post edition lists at $15 but sells at Walmart for $9. Another edition with commentary from Alan Dershowitz is available at Barnes & Noble for $6.94. LPR is more interested in the forthcoming report from Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz, and from the report that Attorney General William Barr is said to be working on. The latter is said to be concerned with the origins of Russiagate and the IG report may shed light on former FBI Director James Comey's role in the affair. ( Comey, you will recall, originally was sharply criticized by Democrats for his handling of the Hillary Clinton server matter, and again for reopening the Clinton case briefly in the weeks before the November 8, 2016 election. He subsequently gained plaudits from the left when he expressed his distaste for President Trump.)

LPR is eager to learn what set off Russiagate which, it is generally agreed (with the exception of hardcore anti-Trump zealots), did not involve "coordination," quoting the guidelines issued for the special counsel May 17, 2017, "between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump." Democrats have focused their attention to the second volume of the report which is said to leave open some ten possible instances of obstruction of justice by the president. It should be apparent that for members of the resistance, including House Democrat committee chairman, the very presence of Mr. Trump in the White House constitutes a political obstruction that must be removed -- an obstruction to the goals of Democrat hegemonyh in Washington.

 

One alleged instance of obstruction is said to be the president's desire to remove Robert S Mueller III as special counsel. If Mr. Mueller had been removed for cause, arguably he could have been replaced. If so, where is the obstruction. Mr. Mueller was not replaced. Again where is the obstruction. As others have also pointed out, however, if there was no coordination between the Russian government and the Trump campaign, what wrongful conduct was there to obstruct -- or cover up? And as Andrew McCarthy has pointed out on the John Batchelor Show, to require that Mr. Mueller have exonerated the president is beyond the responsibility of a prosecutor because it would imply that the burden of proof had shifted to Mr. Trump -- that is to say, he would be presumed guilty unless he could prove otherwise, which is contrary to our jurisprudence.

It remains unclear to LPR how the Russians meddled in the 2016 election. It is further unclear to LPR what form the alleged meddling took and what impact said alleged meddling had on Hillary Clinton's Electoral College defeat. It is, however, quite clear that the Trump resistance, ipso facto, undermines our democratic tradition and it is apparent that the resistance can only be encouraged to oppose the Constitution's process for electing a President when Speaker Pelosi can say, as she said recently, "We cannot accept a second term for Donald Trump." What does that mean if not continued refusal to accept the will of the voters and what is such refusal of not an attempt to undermine representative, republican government.