Former Watergate prosecutor Jill Wine-Banks told MSNBC on Friday that she had “always believed” a sitting president could be indicted — and that the new BuzzFeed allegations that President Donald Trump suborned perjury from his former fixer Michael Cohen may be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.
“The Justice Department’s long standing view is no, you cannot prosecute a president, for a variety of reasons,” said NBC reporter Pete Williams. “I’ll just boil it down to simply: the president can’t run the country from jail, at least not while he’s in office you can’t charge him.” Williams added that unless special counsel Robert Mueller isn’t bound by that legal opinion, Trump’s removal remained “a political issue for Congress.”
“I have always said that I believe that the president, even when sitting, can be indicted,” said Wine-Banks. “And if the facts justify it, and they are starting to look ominously like they do, justify indicting the president.” She added, however, that “impeachment is a very fine alternative”.
Host Hallie Jackson noted that both Presidents Nixon and Clinton were impeached in part for witness tampering and asked if that would spur Democrats to move “more aggressively toward impeachment.” Surprisingly, Wine-Banks replied that even Republicans might turn on Trump.
“I think this is the kind of evidence that could influence Republicans as well as Democrats to act faster, because they are the ones who got lied to, and the public got lied to,” she said. “There [was] also evidence of Nixon lying to the public as grounds for impeachment.”
Watch the video below.
Betsy DeVos, Ben Carson send anti-trans signals to Trump’s evangelical base
While Trump grabs headlines, his Cabinet members quietly use transphobia to shore up white evangelical support
The white evangelical vote is almost certainly a lock for Donald Trump in 2020, but it appears the president is taking no chances of losing this critical voting block. One major part of that strategy appears to be quietly deploying his Cabinet members, especially those associated with the Christian right, to generate stories highlighting the Trump administration's overt bigotry toward trans people, and its eagerness to deprive trans Americans of basic rights.
Just this week, both Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson snagged coverage by making community visits that were ostensibly for noble purposes, but were clearly meant to signal to Christian right voters their hostility to trans rights.
Intelligence official directly contradicts Trump administration’s excuses for suppressing whistleblower
A top official in the intelligence community has disputed the factual basis for the Trump administration’s suppression of a whistleblower complaint believed to regard the potential misconduct of the president himself, a new letter released Thursday revealed.
The letter was made public by House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA). He is locked into a fierce and potentially explosive dispute with an array of forces within the administration to obtain the complaint, which was made through proper channels by an intelligence official last month to the community’s inspector general. Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson determined that the complaint was “credible” and “urgent,” and subsequent reporting from the Washington Post found that it concerns a “promise” made by Trump in communication with a foreign leader.
Longtime GOP strategist explains why his party is getting crushed in the war of ideas
Republican strategist Stuart Stevens on Wednesday warned the GOP that Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) might not be a pushover candidate against President Donald Trump in 2020.
Writing on Twitter, Stevens admitted that he had "no idea" if Warren would beat Trump next year, but he did say that "Trump and supporters are destroying [the] credibility of any center-right argument" thanks to Trump's "corrupt and unstable" governance.
When one of Stevens' followers said that Warren would not be able to fulfill her promises just by taxing the wealthy, he countered that this idea is still more popular than anything Republicans are championing.