Overnight The Washington Post published a bombshell report: President Donald Trump, in an effort to ensure his re-election, has been directing aides to break the law to get his border wall built. Trump has ordered White House aides to “fast-track billions of dollars’ worth of construction contracts,” and “aggressively seize private land and disregard environmental rules,” according to the Post, so he can fulfill a campaign promise.
To make matters worse Trump “also has told worried subordinates that he will pardon them of any potential wrongdoing should they have to break laws to get the barriers built quickly.”
Legal experts are weighing in n the news and they agree: Trump’s actions are illegal and impeachable.
The White House, in an effort to minimize the damage, has said the President was only joking when he told aides to break the law so he could cinch re-election.
Joking or not, Trump is “directing them to violate law,” as Georgetown Law Professor Marty Lederman notes:
Allegations by "several" witnesses that Trump directs officials to act unlawfully to increase his electoral prospects & implies he'll pardon them. WH spokesperson response is that the pardon bit was a joke–i.e., he's directing them to violate law *without* a prospect of pardon.
— Marty Lederman (@marty_lederman) August 28, 2019
Don Moynihan, a professor at Georgetown and visiting professor at Oxford notes that “Trump preemptively promising public employees a pardon makes clear that he knows what he asking them to do is illegal.”
Trump preemptively promising public employees a pardon makes clear that he knows what he asking them to do is illegal. Not a consitututional scholar here, but that seems pretty impeachable behavior. https://t.co/Pkp7gbjNHP pic.twitter.com/zIZgpKW60q
— Don Moynihan (@donmoyn) August 28, 2019
Ryan Goodman, a Chaired Professor NYU Law and a former Special Counsel at the Dept.of Defense offers a one-word response: “Impeachable.”
“When aides have suggested that some of his orders are illegal or unworkable, Trump has suggested he would pardon the officials if they would just go ahead….
‘Don’t worry, I’ll pardon you,’ he has told officials in meetings about the wall.”https://t.co/UlYhMVFhVf
— Ryan Goodman (@rgoodlaw) August 28, 2019
Brendan Nyhan, a professor of government at Dartmouth College says this is “How the rule of law dies.”
How the rule of law dies: the President "has told worried subordinates that he will pardon them of any potential wrongdoing should they have to break laws" https://t.co/IYfrq2Pj2N
— Brendan Nyhan (@BrendanNyhan) August 28, 2019
Jonathan H. Adler, a law professor at the Case Western Reserve University School of Law looks back to America’s founding and adds:
This was actually why the pardon power was controversial and opposed by some Anti-Federalists https://t.co/zcPRs9IeN8
— Jonathan H. Adler (@jadler1969) August 28, 2019
Harvard Law professor Laurence Tribe offers a two-word description: “impeachable bribery.”
Trump’s offer to pardon lawbreaking aides who seize property illegally to build his wall by Election Day is impeachable bribery. He says it’s a big joke. The joke’s on him. @SpeakerPelosi @RepJerryNadler @RepRaskin https://t.co/eXqx5tbx0K
— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) August 28, 2019
Former Nixon Nixon White House Counsel John Dean gets very specific: “conspiracy to defraud the government and obstruct justice.”
If Trump’s telling aides to break the law, he will pardon them, it’s a conspiracy to defraud the government and obstruct justice in violation of 18 USC 371 not to mention an impeachable violation of his oath of office. Congress should pass a RES saying NO! https://t.co/2HgknKNOpT
— John Dean (@JohnWDean) August 28, 2019
DC mayor trolls Trump by lighting ‘Black Lives Matter Plaza: ‘We turned on the night light for him’
It’s Donald Trump vs Joe Biden: Associate Press reports former VP has clinched the DNC nomination
The 2020 general election campaign between two top parties has unofficially been set.
"Joe Biden formally clinched the Democratic presidential nomination Friday, setting him up for a bruising challenge to President Donald Trump that will play out against the unprecedented backdrop of a pandemic, economic collapse and civil unrest," the AP reported Friday. "The former vice president has effectively been his party’s leader since his last challenger in the Democratic primary, Bernie Sanders, ended his campaign in April. But Biden pulled together the 1,991 delegates needed to become the nominee after seven states and the District of Columbia held presidential primaries Tuesday."
Trump retweets right-wing video attacking George Floyd’s character — hours after calling it a ‘great day’ for Floyd
On Friday, President Donald Trump retweeted a video from right-wing commentator Glenn Beck, which appeared to question the wisdom of calling George Floyd a "hero" — and concurring with Black GOP commentator Candace Owens, who said it "sickens me" he is being "held up as a martyr."
— David Gura (@davidgura) June 6, 2020