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‘Felony bribery’: Ex-Bush ethics czar blasts Trump’s latest impeachment defense as another ‘criminal’ violation

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Prof. Richard Painter was the chief White House ethics lawyer.

Former White House ethics lawyer Richard Painter called out President Donald Trump’s latest scheme to shore up Republican support against impeachment as “felony bribery.”

The Trump re-election campaign sent out a fundraising appeal Wednesday to its massive email list asking for contributions that would be divided between the president and three vulnerable Republican senators — Colorado’s Cory Gardner, Iowa’s Joni Ernst and North Carolina’s Thom Tillis — that was explicitly tied to his impeachment defense.

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“If we don’t post strong fundraising numbers,” the request warned, “we won’t be able to defend the President from this baseless Impeachment WITCH HUNT.”

Painter, a law professor and ethics czar under former President George W. Bush, said the Trump campaign’s request was clearly illegal, and placed the GOP senators in legal jeopardy, as well.

“This is a bribe,” Painter tweeted. “Any other American who offered cash to the jury before a trial would go to prison for felony bribery. But he can get away with it? Criminal.”

Painter said the senators could raise their own campaign funds, and any one of them that accepted the donations from Trump before the impeachment trial was guilty of accepting a bribe.

“If (Trump) doesn’t want to get hit with a bribery charge, during the impeachment process he had better stick to raising money for GOP challengers in senate races, not incumbent senators who will vote guilty or not guilty in his case,” Painter tweeted.

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2020 Election

Trump’s Georgia rally will be a ‘grievance-fest’ and he’ll ignore the GOP’s Senate candidates: Republican insiders

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According to a report from the Independent, Georgia Republicans are nervously eyeing Donald Trump's planned rally in their state late Saturday having no idea whether he will lend them a hand holding onto the two seats in the U.S. Senate or whether he will spend the time ranting about the election he believes was stolen from him.

With both Republican Senators David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler's seats at stake -- as well as control of the U.S. Senate -- Republicans have been working overtime to correct the impression that voter fraud led to the state's 16 Electoral College votes going to former Vice President Joe Biden and cost Trump a second term.

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CNBC’s Rick Santelli ripped as ‘psychopath’ for on-air ‘meltdown’ over COVID-19 restrictions

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CNBC's Andrew Ross Sorkin and Rick Santelli clashed over coronavirus restrictions, setting off another round of discussion on social media.

The conservative Santelli loudly insisted that bars and restaurants, which are shut down in many areas, were no more dangerous than large retailers, which have mostly been allowed to stay open, and Sorkin cut him off.

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Federal judge says Trump pardon of Michael Flynn may have been ‘too broad’: report

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A trial judge has raised the possibility that the federal judge overseeing the case of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn could find that President Trump's pardon of Flynn may be "too broad," according to The National Law Journal.

The comments “came unexpectedly” during a Freedom of Information Act hearing about releasing documents from special counsel Robert Mueller's office, according to BuzzFeed reporter Jason Leopold.

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