Trump's 'comically mistaken grasp' of the law deflated after he whines about newly appointed special counsel
Donald Trump (Photo by Saul Loeb for AFP)

In a column for Intelligencer, longtime political observer Jonathan Chait ridiculed Donald Trump over his protest late Friday after he learned that the DOJ is enlisting a special counsel to take over the current investigations into his inciting the Jan. 6 riot, and his squirreling away top secret government documents at his Mar-a-Lago resort, which could lead to espionage charges.

During Trump's harangue he complained, "We are innocent, they are not innocent by any stretch of the imagination. They're criminals, I've done nothing wrong, they've participated in massive criminal activity with many nations."

He then added, "It's not a fair situation what's going on."

As Chait pointed out the former president suggested a legal maneuver that would get thrown out immediately in court, calling the former president's assertion, "comically mistaken."

According to Trump, "They tried it, and we went through the whole process, and we won. We went through the whole process. So wouldn’t this sort of be, a – then you take a look at the other. We went through two of them. Isn’t this sort of like double jeopardy? In the old days we used to call it 'double jeopardy.'"

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Assuming Trump was referencing his two impeachments, Chait stated they were irrelevant.

'Trump’s first defense is that, because he was previously impeached twice by Congress but not removed from office, prosecuting him for stealing documents would be, double jeopardy,'" he wrote before explaining.

"There is some popular misunderstanding of the double jeopardy principle. The 1999 movie 'Double Jeopardy' starred Ashley Judd as a woman whose husband faked his own death and framed her for the murder. In prison, a fellow inmate advises her that once she gets out, she can find and kill her husband and avoid prosecution because she can’t be charged for the same crime twice. (Hence the title of the film,)" he wrote. "This advice is wrong — killing her husband years later would be a different crime, for which she could absolutely be charged — and in general you should not commit felonies on the basis of free legal advice you heard from a fellow inmate."

He then added, "Even so, this comically mistaken grasp of double jeopardy is less ridiculous than Trump’s notion that it means that, having beaten the rap for one crime (or in his case, many crimes), you are free to commit more crimes without prosecution," before joking, "That would be a gigantic loophole in the legal system."

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