Thursday, November 2, 2017

Lowry: No Pardons. No Firing.

At National Review, Rich Lowry argues President Trump should "do what’s hardest for him — nothing ... his instinct to lash out is his worst enemy" something that puts him "at more peril" than "any of the facts that have been uncovered by Mueller, congressional investigators or the press to this point."

Lowry argues firing Muleller would "endanger" Trump's presidency even though "the proverbial net, as far as we know, isn’t closing in." There is "no suggestion" in  Manafort's indictment of "any" of his "alleged wrongdoing, which dates back to 2006, had anything to do with the campaign." His failure to register as a foreign lobbyist "for his work for Ukrainian political players, a fairly common offense among lobbyists" is "usually remedied by an amended filing."

The accusation of laundering millions of dollars (for which "we have no evidence of yet") need not "directly affect Trump."

As for George Papadopoulos, Lowry notes that his plea for lying to the FBI "actually involves his work for the campaign."
He misled investigators about the timing and nature of his contacts with Russians who wanted to set up a Vladimir Putin-Donald Trump meeting and spoke of dirt on Hillary Clinton. This is suggestive, but Papadopoulos was a bit player, and it’s not clear the talk went anywhere. 
Finally, Lowry argues "the option of pre-emptively pardoning everyone targeted by Mueller also is foolhardy." It would "associate the president with the lobbyist’s alleged malfeasance when the point should be to establish distance, and would convince everyone that Trump has something explosive to hide." See full editorial here

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