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SivaGanesha

for which crimes, if any, should Trump be prosecuted?

should Trump be prosecuted and, if so, for which crimes?  

21 members have voted

  1. 1. for which crimes, if any, should Trump be prosecuted after he leaves office?

    • crimes connected with his official duties as President
      3
    • business crimes related to his private activities in the Trump Organization
      11
    • personal crimes -- i.e. the sexual assault of women
      4
    • in the interests of healing the country, Trump should not be prosecuted
      2
    • Trump should not be prosecuted because I believe he is innocent of wrongdoing
      1


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If Trump were pardoned he would claim it as total exoneration. As he did with the Russian investigation. 

I have a feeling Mueller may have held something back and we may hear more about  That after Trump loses the protection of the presidency. 

 As for the GOP controlled Senate finding him not guilty, that is like the foxes judging and finding no case to answer for the great chicken coop massacre.

McConnell squashed any chance of impeachment even before the hearings began.

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Either:

a) No one is above the law.

b) We have two classes of people in the USA: Those subject to the law, and those who are above it.

The whole idea of a pardon is disgusting. That would be letting the next wannabe-Mussolini know that there is no reason to pay any heed to what is legal, since political office will give him immunity.

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8 hours ago, brenthutch said:

Just what charges are you guys talking about?  You seem to be as confident in Trumps criminality, as you were with his collusion with the Russians.

Michael Cohen was convicted and went to prison for something Trump told him to do, paid him to do, and would also have been indicted for if he hadn't been protected by being President at the time.

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 How did that work out for you?

The Mueller report found things he would have been indicted for if he didn't have the protection of being President at the time. So you tell me how it worked out.

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7 hours ago, RobertMBlevins said:

The main thing is that he GOES from politics and never returns, not as a US President, not even as a dog catcher. 

So how do you make sure that happens? You think it's possible to make a deal with him to quietly go away in exchange for leaving him alone? Get real. He's just as addicted to the spotlight as he ever was and he still has tens of millions of ardent followers.

Consider this - in the UK if you carry out a poll of worst ever Prime Ministers Mrs Thatcher would probably be in the top 2. If you carry out a poll of best ever Prime Ministers then guess what? Top 2 again! If you carry out the same poll in the US towards the end of Biden's Presidency it would not surprise one bit if Trump would be voted both best ever and worst ever. It's completely feasible for him to run again, be nominated again and have a good chance of winning again. 

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Is it better to go after Trump, or better to cast him from office, toss him a pardon, and let the nation move on to healing?

It's better to charge, convict and sentence criminals than it is to create an uber privileged group of elite political leaders who know they are above the law.

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These same things were said regarding Nixon just prior to, and after...he left office. If you open that can of worms, i.e. trying to charge and convict Trump criminally for things he did while he was in office, all you will accomplish is to give fuel and fire to Trump supporters. 

American voters put him in office in the first place. Some of them should have known better. Now we have to live with the results. But if you want to feed his followers and create even more division than we have in this country right now, then by all means go at him on January 21 with both barrels. 

Get real. Do you believe that Trump is the most corrupt US President in history? Maybe he is. But some others were almost as bad. You have to look at whether your personal 'payoff' for seeking revenge does more harm than good. And right now, it would distract from what's best for the country, and give his followers more fodder, and more time on Faux News. We're just lucky he is out of office soon. Settle for that, and let the civil suits do the rest. The payoff isn't worth the trouble it will cause. People have other things on their mind right now. Like how they will pay their mortgages, get a job, two vaccine shots in the arm, and somehow recover our economy. Trump is petty bullshit that is soon going away with his tail between his legs. 

Let Trump be a lesson to us all. When you see and hear bullshit...vote AGAINST it. Don't vote FOR it and then whine later. Save us all a lot of time. If Trump were to actually ACCEPT a pardon, this is mostly considered an admission of guilt. It would be the worst thing to happen to him. He must be seeking it...he's inquired on whether he can pardon HIMSELF. Give it to him and may the White House door hit him in the ass on his way out. This country has things to do, goals to meet, problems to solve. 

I say let Joe Biden handle it for us and move on from one of the biggest mistakes ever made by the voters. It will be a lesson not forgotten for a long time. I didn't vote for Trump, but maybe we won't put our heads up our butts the next time someone like him comes along. Especially when we step into that voting booth. 

Edited by RobertMBlevins

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13 minutes ago, RobertMBlevins said:

These same things were said regarding Nixon just prior to, and after...he left office. If you open that can of worms, i.e. trying to charge and convict Trump criminally for things he did while he was in office, all you will accomplish is to give fuel and fire to Trump supporters.

First, no they weren't. Nixon had been elected twice already, he couldn't be elected again. That argument of yours doesn't apply.

Second, so what? It was just as wrong not to prosecute Nixon as it would be not to prosecute known crimes of Trump. One could easily argue that not prosecuting Nixon helped lead shape the system which allowed Trump to get away with all his shit.

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Get real. Do you believe that Trump is the most corrupt US President in history? Maybe he is. But some others were almost as bad. 

Let's just take a moment to appreciate the absurdity of this line of argument. You contend that plenty of US Presidents are grossly corrupt - and you use that to support your position that US Presidents should be immune to the legal consequences of corruption? Or to put it another way, because many Presidents are corrupt, you want to make sure that all incoming Presidents will know that they too can be as corrupt as they want and get away scot free? Is that seriously how you think a robust system of government should work?:shock:

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You have to look at whether your personal 'payoff' for seeking revenge does more harm than good. 

It's not just a personal payoff, it's the law. It's not just the law, it's imposing some form of standards on those who hold elected or appointed office in the Executive branch. The US claims to be a government of checks and balances. Trump claims that the President has the power to do whatever he wants. Which viewpoint do you think should be proved right?

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People have other things on their mind right now. Like how they will pay their mortgages, get a job, two vaccine shots in the arm, and somehow recover our economy. Trump is petty bullshit that is soon going away with his tail between his legs. 

Irrelevant, the one has nothing to do with the other. Explain how Trump being prosecuted, convicted and not pardoned could possibly have an impact on the timeframe of a vaccine rollout, for example.

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Let Trump be a lesson to us all. When you see and hear bullshit...vote AGAINST it. Don't vote FOR it and then whine later. Save us all a lot of time. If Trump were to actually ACCEPT a pardon, this is mostly considered an admission of guilt. It would be the worst thing to happen to him. He must be seeking it...he's inquired on whether he can pardon HIMSELF.

You're contradicting yourself multiple time within the same post. Trump is obviously not a lesson to us all, you pointed out already that he got 70 million votes. Again, run a poll right now for greatest ever President and he would win. Run it in 4 years time with Trump still walking free holding rallies and he'd win that too.

Then, it is considered an admission of guilt by people who understand the process. How much faith do you have in the comprehension of reality by hardline Trump supporters? 

Finally, since you jst said he wants one, how bad could it be? If a pardon is a demonstration of guilt, a conviction and sentencing is a demonstration of guilt plus an actual punishment. How is guilt alone worse than guilt and consequences?

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8 minutes ago, RobertMBlevins said:

We will have to agree to disagree. I have already given my humble opinions on this issue at length. I'm not going to change them.

To be honest I really would like to know why, given that you think many Presidents are corrupt, that it is a good and useful thing for them to know going in to office that they will be allowed to get away with that corruption free of any punishment.

But if you don't want to answer that, it speaks for itself.

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I want Trump to be subject to the law, just like everyone else. Personally I want him to be prosecuted and punished for non-Presidential business crimes, in part because so few people are, because they can afford great lawyers.

I too don't want him prosecuted for political crimes. Not because he should get a pass, but because if the actual goal is to have my country move beyond this moment, it will be by gathering opponents, not rounding them up. To me, a progression in my country where people of opposing views begin to respect each other again, and are willing to work on common goals again, rather than simply defining what they're for as whatever the other guy is against.

My preference would include the public release of the actual collusion report, as well as a well-sourced book. Well-sourced as in largely unimpeachable sources -- if liberals look for a source to build the case, rather than a source that comes because they're following the trail (there's a difference), they lose people who can be convinced by the trail. Famously in the Nixon era is was 'follow the money' -- it wasn't "roast Nixon." That's a key difference, and it will keep a lot more people with intellectual integrity.

I couldn't care less about some people's wish for a huge public trial -- that's for their own satisfaction, not for the country. It's as useful as people wanting to "fry" some killer or another.

Wendy P.

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1 hour ago, RobertMBlevins said:

We will have to agree to disagree. I have already given my humble opinions on this issue at length. I'm not going to change them.

That's pretty much the definition of a closed mind. It's not that the Presidency must be protected, it's that he personally must be emasculated. The only hope of doing that is with a felony conviction. Take his money and his cult will send him more and subscribe to his new reality show for good measure. Think of it as step one in bending the arc of world history away from right wing authoritarianism. He must be pulled down and kept down. It's the courts or nothing. 

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27 minutes ago, wmw999 said:

I too don't want him prosecuted for political crimes. Not because he should get a pass, but because if the actual goal is to have my country move beyond this moment, it will be by gathering opponents, not rounding them up.

That's an easy goal. The country will move on from this moment regardless. That's how time works. If the goal is to protect the integrity of the political system, and show future incumbents that they actually do have an obligation to follow the laws that govern their office then political crimes absolutely should be prosecuted. 

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To me, a progression in my country where people of opposing views begin to respect each other again, and are willing to work on common goals again, rather than simply defining what they're for as whatever the other guy is against.

It's been 46 years since Nixon's pardon - how's that approach been working for you?

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My preference would include the public release of the actual collusion report, as well as a well-sourced book. Well-sourced as in largely unimpeachable sources -- if liberals look for a source to build the case, rather than a source that comes because they're following the trail (there's a difference), they lose people who can be convinced by the trail.

Sorry, but 'unimpeachable sources' is a pie in the sky, fantasy land pipedream. The Mueller investigation was run by a Republican who was put in place by a Republican who was appointed by Trump, and pretty much everyone on the right still thinks it was a Democrat party hatchet job. 

And take the impeachment - what better source could you possibly have than Lt Col Vindman, who pretty much everyone on the right now thinks is a traitor whose true loyalty lies with Ukraine? 

Seriously - you tell me who the liberals could ever talk to who wouldn't instantly be dismissed as some form of biased liar simply because they talked to the liberals?

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I couldn't care less about some people's wish for a huge public trial -- that's for their own satisfaction, not for the country. It's as useful as people wanting to "fry" some killer or another.

That's irrelevant to the question of whether he should go on trial.

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12 hours ago, brenthutch said:

Just what charges are you guys talking about?  You seem to be as confident in Trumps criminality, as you were with his collusion with the Russians.  How did that work out for you?  Being a mindless, egomaniacal, douchebag while being reprehensible is not illegal.

Well at least you're finally admitting the true nature of trump's character. Thats progress!

The protections that the American legal system affords the president. Immunity from prosecution while in office. Not having to testify under oath, etc. will soon be gone.

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1 hour ago, jakee said:

That's an easy goal. The country will move on from this moment regardless. That's how time works. If the goal is to protect the integrity of the political system, and show future incumbents that they actually do have an obligation to follow the laws that govern their office then political crimes absolutely should be prosecuted. 

It's been 46 years since Nixon's pardon - how's that approach been working for you?

Sorry, but 'unimpeachable sources' is a pie in the sky, fantasy land pipedream. The Mueller investigation was run by a Republican who was put in place by a Republican who was appointed by Trump, and pretty much everyone on the right still thinks it was a Democrat party hatchet job. 

And take the impeachment - what better source could you possibly have than Lt Col Vindman, who pretty much everyone on the right now thinks is a traitor whose true loyalty lies with Ukraine? 

Seriously - you tell me who the liberals could ever talk to who wouldn't instantly be dismissed as some form of biased liar simply because they talked to the liberals?

That's irrelevant to the question of whether he should go on trial.

The 46 years since Nixon's pardon have been quite free of Nixon, and of apologists. Kind of nice.

Yes, the country will move on regardless. Right now there are a lot of forces that want as much confrontation as possible -- some people like confrontation, some people think that forcing compliance is an effective way to get what you want. As soon as you're not physically superior, you lose that compliance if whoever you subjugated doesn't admit they were wrong, or if they are not isolated to a degree where they become irrelevant. That second is what happened to Nixon.

There's a reason I qualified the word unimpeachable. There are people who wouldn't believe Trump was guilty of anything if he called them up and told them personally. In a country of 330 million, and a world of nearly 7 billion, those people are only relevant if they're either strong enough, rich enough, or attractive enough.

I have a friend who is, in fact, quite right wing, and has developed a loathing of Trump that he's willing to share with anyone on his FB feed (not an authoritative source, but it's where his friends go). And they listen -- while none of them are firm Democrats now (which he isn't either), they're all posting a whole lot less "we was robbed" stuff. And I'm fine with that -- the more people who are exposed to a source they trust that disagrees with them, that person becomes the exception they might trust. It's a shame, but that's how tribal humans work -- "I don't like (whatever), but Bubba there is an exception -- he's a good guy."

Wendy P.

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1 hour ago, wmw999 said:

The 46 years since Nixon's pardon have been quite free of Nixon, and of apologists. Kind of nice.

That's a goal post shift. You'd have been free of him regardless. But has the country made any move towards respecting opposing views or working together in bipartisan cooperation? So why insist that doing the same thing again is how to make it happen?

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Yes, the country will move on regardless. Right now there are a lot of forces that want as much confrontation as possible -- some people like confrontation, some people think that forcing compliance is an effective way to get what you want. As soon as you're not physically superior, you lose that compliance if whoever you subjugated doesn't admit they were wrong, or if they are not isolated to a degree where they become irrelevant. That second is what happened to Nixon.

That's what you have when you insist that the President can't be prosecuted. Seriously, think about it for a moment. If you insist that the President is not subject to prosecution by the independent judiciary, the only way to hold the President accountable is through a partisan political body. Please, please make a genuine attempt to explain to me why relying on the political dog and pony show as the only possible way to sanction a President who acts illegally is a better method of making both sides feel like they can work together than if you let federal investigators and the court system do the same job they do for everyone else?

Come on, it makes no sense. You know it makes no sense. The actions you advocate will not help bring two opposing sides together and they will leave the system weaker. Honestly what you are planning is to do absolutely nothing to fix the damage done or weaknesses exposed in the system by Trump, and instead cross your fingers and hope that no one else so feckless is elected again to take those actions even further.

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I have a friend who is, in fact, quite right wing, and has developed a loathing of Trump that he's willing to share with anyone on his FB feed (not an authoritative source, but it's where his friends go). And they listen -- while none of them are firm Democrats now (which he isn't either), they're all posting a whole lot less "we was robbed" stuff.

Right - but your friend who posts on Facebook won't be in that book, will he? And people who don't already personally know and trust Bubba wouldn't be convinced even if he was in the book, would they? So despite the reaction of your FB friends, Bubba is still almost entirely impeachable as a source.

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There is a huge difference between Nixon and Trump. The potential crimes that Nixon may have been guilty of were conspiracies related to the political acts of covering up campaign related efforts to get re-elected. If and when Trump is prosecuted it will be for crimes that were not committed during his presidency. It will be for some kind of thieving and or lying involving his business or more likely his taxes.

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4 hours ago, ryoder said:

A let us remember that even after resigning in disgrace, and being pardoned, that asshole Nixon still would not admit he ever did anything wrong:

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Hi Robert,

I have always considered that about the dumbest thing Nixon every said; second only to, "I am not a crook.'

I am for prosecuting Trump for any crimes that he committed while Pres.  We can prosecute Congress Critters & members of the SCOTUS for any crimes they commit.  Why would the worst Pres in my lifetime be exempt?

It sure would send a message to future Presidents.

Personally, I do not think Biden will go after Trump; so that ends any federal charges.  It will be up to the states to give him lodging in prison.  I think an orange jumpsuit will go nicely with his orange hair.

Jerry Baumchen

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5 minutes ago, JerryBaumchen said:

Personally, I do not think Biden will go after Trump; so that ends any federal charges. 

Biden shouldn't have any involvement in who the various Federal law enforcement agencies investigate or who Federal prosecutors decide to charge.

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1 hour ago, JerryBaumchen said:

...Personally, I do not think Biden will go after Trump; so that ends any federal charges.  It will be up to the states to give him lodging in prison.  I think an orange jumpsuit will go nicely with his orange hair.

Jerry Baumchen

Hi Jerry,

Biden shouldn't have to 'go after' (or 'not go after') Trump.
See below.

54 minutes ago, jakee said:

Biden shouldn't have any involvement in who the various Federal law enforcement agencies investigate or who Federal prosecutors decide to charge.

Bingo.

The federal prosecutors are the ones who decide to investigate or indict anyone. In fact, they are already investigating "Trump Inc", and have a variety of subpoenas that have been filed, that Trump was trying to avoid. 

The general idea is (or was) that the Attorney General and Justice Department should be as independent as possible. Appointed by the President, but (in theory) not subject to the whims of the Chief Executive. 
That's why Barr's attempt to subvert justice by interfering in Flynn's guilty plea was so abhorrent to many 'court watchers'.

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I never said I thought Trump wasn't eligible to be prosecuted for civilian stuff related to his business practices. I said that going after a former President for possible political crimes after he leaves office will cause nothing but more discord. Nixon had a lot of supporters, even after he left office. But by Ford pardoning him, two things were accomplished. First, it relegated Nixon to a watch-from-the-sidelines role in the Republican party for the remainder of his life. And it brought a final end to the disaster of Watergate. It wasn't perfect justice, but it was better for the country as a whole. 

If you keep ripping open the wounds with Trump, he will simply continue to HAVE a voice in the Republican party. Those 70 million people who DID vote for him will continue to look up to Trump as Their Voice. Trump himself can use that for political gain, claiming 'they're just trying to stop me'. It could go round and round in the courts for years. Meanwhile, he could even try running for President again...and he might win. A scary thought. Raking him over the coals and trying to convict him of an office-related felony is just pointless. Think of the bigger picture here. 

Historians have argued for more than a century on 'Who was the worst US President ever?' The same names always come up, but often ranked in different order. James Buchanan, Andrew Johnson, etc. Well, I would say that argument is OVER and Trump gets the Numero Uno spot. But in the end, we must do what is best for ALL of America, and making Trump into a martyr who will continue to have influence on American politics for years to come is NOT the way to handle this. 

You want the barking dog to leave the neighborhood, not to keep feeding he and his friends. 

Edited by RobertMBlevins
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If Trump ends up being an underdog, there are people who will sympathize him simply because he's an underdog. It's stupid, but it's reality. Nixon was never an underdog.

No, the US isn't perfect, but I don't think that Nixon's pardon (much as I hated it at the time) led to the "Reagan Revolution," Newt Gingrich's Republican power consolidation strategy, the repeal of the Fairness Doctrine, the rise of Fox News and other single-target channels, Citizens United and all the rest of what's come to split America. It's no more that simple than "socialism bad, capitalism good."

We can agree to disagree on what's important and what isn't, especially if only one side is expected to capitulate, because, after all, the other side is "right." I want common goals, and fuck the differences. Work through them, understand them, but my nature will remain conciliatory rather than antagonistic, and needling won't change my nature, any more than I would expect me to change someone else's nature.

But a death-by-a-thousand-needles approach to changing ideas can work. I've seen it work. I've rarely seen browbeating work -- people want to come to conclusions by themselves, from the information (even if they're led to it).

Wendy P.

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