Strangelove wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 23, 2019 3:05 pm
Per wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 23, 2019 2:31 am
... and the walls are closing in ....
That's what you said about the Russian collusion "investigation"!
Well.... They did
conclude that there was
Russian interference in the election that benefitted Trump and that there was intense contact between the Russians and several members of the Trump campaign. They couldn't find the smoking gun to tie the criminal actions to Trump personally though.
The investigation "identified numerous links between the Russian government and the Trump campaign", and determined that the Trump campaign "expected it would benefit electorally" from Russian hacking efforts. However, ultimately "the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities". The evidence was not necessarily complete due to encrypted, deleted, or unsaved communications as well as false, incomplete, or declined testimony. Mueller later said that the investigation's conclusion on Russian interference "deserves the attention of every American".
Mueller also refrained from bringing charges against Trump for obstruction of justice, abiding by a DOJ Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) opinion that a sitting president cannot stand trial. He did however account for ten infractions that could be considered obstruction, but left it to congress to decide if these were to be considered offences. Pelosi obviously felt that these infractions were not blatant enough to result in a successful impeachment, and abstained from pursuing it.
That doesn't mean there was no wrongdoing. Members of Trump's campaign staff did collude with the Russians and Trump himself did obstruct justice. Just as Bill Clinton did have sex with Monica Lewinsky. Those things happened. The question though is whether congress feels this is sufficient reason to remove the president from office.
Yet even though Trump was not brought down by the investigation several of his minions and henchmen got caught:
¤ Lieutenant General Michael Flynn, who had been appointed as National Security Advisor by the incoming Trump administration, was convicted of making false statements to FBI investigators about his conversations with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the presidential transition, and he was dismissed from his position.
¤ Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort was found guilty on eight felony counts of tax evasion and bank fraud, pursuant to his earlier lobbying activities for the Party of Regions of former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich. He later pled guilty to conspiracy to defraud and obstruction of justice; in total, he was sentenced to over seven years in jail.
¤ In February 2018, Mueller's team indicted thirteen Russian citizens and three Russian entities, including the Internet Research Agency (IRA), for conducting social media campaigns about the U.S. elections, and twelve members of the Russian GRU cyber espionage group known as Fancy Bear, for hacking and leaking DNC emails.
¤ In June 2018 Konstantin Kilimnik, Manafort's business partner in Ukraine, was indicted for witness tampering at the behest of Manafort; Kilimnik is suspected of working for Russian intelligence.
¤ Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen pled guilty to making hush payments to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal in violation of campaign finance laws, and was convicted for several unrelated counts of bank and tax fraud.
¤ Campaign adviser George Papadopoulos was convicted for making false statements to the FBI.
¤ Russian gun activist Maria Butina was interviewed by Special Counsel investigators, then prosecuted by the National Security Law Unit and imprisoned for spying.
¤ Longtime Trump advisor Roger Stone, who had met with a Russian person offering to sell derogatory financial information about Hillary Clinton, was indicted on seven charges and has pled not guilty.
In all, the investigation garnered 199 criminal charges, 37 indictments or guilty pleas, and 5 prison sentences.
As the investigation was brought to an end, they also handed over evidence of dozens of other cases of wrongdoing uncovered in the process to several district and state prosecutors that may result in further convictions.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special_C ... 80%932019)
So if this was a witch hunt, it must be considered a uniquely successful one in that it actually found solid evidence leading to the arrest and conviction of several of the witches!