Trump’s Best Defense Is No Defense at All
Plus: The Republicans Who Know This Indictment Is Devastating
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LINDA CHAVEZ: Trump’s Best Defense Is No Defense at All.
THE GRAVAMEN OF THE CASE against Donald Trump is that he is a threat to the national security of the United States. The indictment against him alleges he retained some of the nation’s nuclear and national defense secrets after he left office, stored them carelessly at a resort where thousands of individuals could access them, showed at least two classified documents to individuals who had no security clearance, refused to return the documents even after receiving a federal subpoena, directed others to hide them from his own lawyers who might feel compelled to honor the subpoena, and even hinted to one of those lawyers that it might be best if the lawyer made the most damaging documents disappear altogether. So, what does the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee believe is the best defense against these charges?
AS THE UKRAINIAN COUNTEROFFENSIVE gets underway, the collapse of the dam at the Kakhovka Hydroelectric Power Plant, the human and environmental toll of which is still unclear, continues to generate both harrowing images and heated polemics. While much of the reaction from the world has harshly condemned Russia, the anti-anti-Kremlin contingent—such as blogger and Quincy Institute fellow Kelley Vlahos and author Robert Wright—have deplored the rush to judgment, arguing that Russia’s guilt is far from established and that there are facts pointing to the Ukrainians as the perpetrators. The Russian propaganda machine, of course, has been tirelessly promoting the “Ukraine did it” narrative—but with some revealing lapses and stumbles among the way.
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What will Republican voters make of Trump’s federal indictment? There have already been polls and much speculation among pundits about whether, at this stage of the long-running Trump show, a portion of the GOP electorate will find the weight of his “baggage” (aka crimes) too much.
Voters’ reactions will be influenced by Republican leaders and media personalities. The pattern we’ve all witnessed over the past eight years is that those “influencers” have rallied around Trump, minimized and “whatabouted” every outrage, and offered no permission for the rank and file to consider that there might just be something more than politics in the accusations against Trump. The base has accordingly dismissed every allegation as politically motivated and the politicians, in turn, have pointed to the opinions of “the people” as justification for sticking with Trump themselves. Rinse and repeat. That minuet continued after the indictment was announced, but this time there were some interesting dissenters.
KIMBERLY WEHLE: Six Defenses Trump’s Lawyers Might Try.
AS FORMER PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP has made clear in speeches and social media posts over the last few days, he does not think much of the federal indictment against him, in response to which he will appear in federal court today.
But whether any of the gripes Trump has been airing could possibly translate into a legal defense in the case is a valid question. (After the indictment was unsealed, his lawyers, Jim Trusty and John Rowley, resigned. Todd Blanche—who represented Paul Manafort, chair of Trump’s 2016 campaign—is picking it up as lead counsel.) The government must prove its allegations beyond a reasonable doubt before a Florida jury in order to convict Trump of anything, and until then, Trump is legally innocent until proven guilty.
Happy Arraignment Tuesday! Did you enjoy the hours of footage of three SUVs? The thumbs up from the limo? The typical circus of strange folks and losers like Kari Lake? Just remember what MLK said: “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”
It’s Internet Outage Day! Seemingly once a year, something big and bad happens to the Internet. CloudFlare acts up, or AmazonWebServices, and today a large portion of the Internet wasn’t functioning because of it. If something seems awry today, that’s probably it.
But not at Twitter… Whose lawyers are having a bad week of self-inflicted wounds.
New Ad! From our friends at the Republican Accountability Project. It’s time to hold Trump to Trump’s own standard.
Congrats to reader Judy Schultze! Longtime Bulwark+ member Judy and her husband Jim’s winery, Windy Oaks, was featured today in the New York Times. I can confirm their product is delicious, so if you’re into wine, give it a try and know you’re supporting a fellow Bulwark reader!
“All ears” no more… The very end of Radio Disney, which ceased airing in 2021.
“He’s a child…” Finally, a CNN town hall that pays off. Watch Christie’s opening.
Inside the implosion… of Trump’s legal team. On the eve of the indictment, no less!
Remembering Cormac McCarthy… Who died today at 89. Bill Ryan had a review of his final work here last month and it’s worth revisiting.
An American goes to Germany… And did not expect that the Germans might not like her!
An inspiring graduation speech… From an Afghan teen now living in Virginia, Rasa Jami: “Every day when I walk into our school and sit in this chair, I remember the girls back in Afghanistan who have been imprisoned in their homes for 16 months just because of being girls.”
Senator Cassidy’s faceplant… A word to the wise: leave the impromptu #hottake videos to Turning Point USA fame seekers, lest you come across as uninformed as they are.
The Guardians’ Epic Comeback… Against the Astros is one of the best games you’ll watch all year.
Rubidium Fountain Clocks… How the U.S. Navy tells time.
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