Category Archives: Trump

Law is weak when a Crime Boss is elected President

 

When Donald Trump was running for the presidency in the 2016 campaign he came up with a very catchy slogan. He is good at that. He said he would “drain the swamp.” One of the handy things about this slogan was that it could mean different things to different people. The image was graphic. People loved it. Heck, I loved it.

But what actually did it mean? He never did define it. That was smart because people could fill it in as they saw fit. Some of his supporters thought it meant that he would get rid of the Wall Street barons s that ate the lunches of the poor suckers from the working classes in the financial crisis of 2008, when they managed to get the alligator’s share of the federal goodies thrown into the swamp by the government. People lost their houses, while executives from Wall Street got their debts paid because they were too big too fail. It was another case of socialism for the rich and rugged individualism for the suckers. Then Trump, after getting elected, appointed many of the creatures from the Swamp to his cabinet. Obviously that was not what he meant by draining the swamp, he was he was feeding the swamp critters.

Some Trump supporters thought draining the swamp meant that Trump would get rid of the Deep State. Instead Trump tried to turn the government officials into his own private mobsters. He expected them to do his bidding and if they didn’t, like Christopher Wray at the FBI, Trump just fired them. Again he was draining the swamp by tossing out the good guys who were courageously doing their job

Whatever it means to drain the swamp surely it surely means to get rid of the corruption. This was one of Trump’s main promises together with building the big beautiful wall.

In law corruption in politics means essentially a politician using the political office to advance his own personal interests over that of the public he or she is supposed to serve. Sadly, that is precisely what Trump did. That is not surprising except perhaps to his devoted supporters who actually believed him. Fortunately, for Trump these supporters were so devoted to him there is nothing he could do to lose that support. As he himself said, he could kill someone in Times Square and he would not lose support. Similarly, he could be the most corrupt president in recent history and he would not lose support. He had a license to kill and a license to corrupt.

The New York Times editorial board understood this well. They pointed out that Trump was the chief law enforcement officer in the country but the meaning of this all depended on what “law” actually meant. As the board said, about Trump:

“The law is something that applies to his adversaries, not to himself or his friends. He regularly turned to the courts to harass and intimidate employees, critics and contractors. But when it has come to his own perceived advantage — whether he was violating federal fair-housing laws to keep black renters out of his apartment buildings, playing shady games with his tax returns, sexually assaulting women, defrauding students of his “university,” raiding his own charity, buying silence of alleged mistresses on the eve of an election, running his global business empire out of the White House, or thwarting the will of Congress by using foreign aid to advance his re-election — Mr. Trump has always seen the law as just another set of rules to be bent, if not broken.”

In other words, for Trump, the law was his instrument of corruption! It was no check on him, it was his to use as he pleased. He really came to understand this after he escaped impeachment. After that he realized that the law could not stop him. The Senate and House of Representatives could not stop him. They would help him. The vaunted American checks and balances were helpless beside his authority. After all he was the chief law enforcement officer of the country and he was ready for the job.

The law is a mighty weak instrument when the people elect a crime boss to lead it.

 

Rotten to the Core

 

I said many times that “this tops it all” in relation to Donald Trump, only to find one outrageous act after another promptly exceeded by the next But this one really  does take the cake. (Actually they all did)

Yesterday, December 23, 2020 Donald Trump pardoned a bunch of people. That is not unusual as American presidents have done that repeatedly, though I have often thought only a crazy political system would give that much authority to one man.

As political commentator John Avalon said on CNN,

“If you look back at the Mueller investigation, the 4 main players who refused to talk and lied to prosecutors were Manafort, Flynn, Papadopoulos, and Stone. They’ve all now been pardoned. And the 2 significant defendants who did testify they’ve not been pardoned.”

 In case you have forgotten who this “rogues gallery of convicted criminals” are,  as CNN called them, Manafort was Trump’s former campaign manager, Flynn was his National Security advisor and promoter of Qanon conspiracies, Stone was Trump’s long time crony and special political advisor and Papadopoulos was a former Trump campaign aide.

In other words the Trump cronies who were loyal to Trump are out of jail, thanks to Trump and those who were loyal to the country remain in jail. One of the lead prosecutors in the Mueller investigation, Andrew Weissmann said this: “The pardons from this president are what you would expect if you gave the pardon power to a mob boss.” Weissmann knows what he is talking about. Before the Mueller investigation he prosecuted cases involving members of the Genovese, Colombo, and Gambino crime families in New York. That is what the US has elected as a president—a Crime Boss.

The Mueller report had said how Trump would signal to the 4 pardoned men while they were being investigated that they could look for a pardon. And yesterday Trump delivered with spectacular results.

Former FBI Deputy Director Any McCabe, also severely criticized the pardons as sending a message that people who did not cooperate with investigators can get rewarded while those who did can suck socks. McCabe called the move by Trump a ‘culmination’ of acts of ‘obstruction of justice.’

As McCabe said on CNN, those who play ball with Trump will be lucky because ‘He will pay you off with a pardon and give you a get out of jail free card. The Mueller report explored whether Trump and allies dangled a pardon to Manafort to discourage him from cooperating with prosecutors.

“ ‘What was seen and referred to in the Mueller report has now been completed. Pardons were dangled. And now they’ve delivered in return for protection for the president. I don’t even know how to describe it, it’s so obviously corrupt,’ he said.”

Laura Coates another former prosecutor with the Department of Justice (‘DOJ”) described it this way;

“On the eve of the eve of Christmas, the ghosts of criminals past have slates wiped clean with presidential pardons, but the smell you smell wafting is not holiday cheer and evergreen boughs, it’s the stench of the swamp and rotten to the core.”

The words “rotten to the core” actually came from Republican Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska. Laura Coates the guest host on the show also said this,

“I am a lawyer who has studied the constitution and I know the president is given the authority to pardon and there are absolutely times when it should be used to right a wrong. But not for executing revenge or rewarding your cronies. That’s rotten to the core.”

Not satisfied with pleasing only those who protected him during the Mueller investigation, Trump gave  an early Christmas gift to his son-in-law Jared Kushners by pardoning his father Charles Kushner for tax evasion and retaliation against a federal witness, and lying to the election commission.

John Avalon was right when he said, “This president who will be considered the most corrupt in American history.” Avalon also reminded us that of the 65 people Trump has pardoned so far, 60 have a personal connection to Trump. He also pointed out that the phrase “quid pro quo,” that played such a prominent role in the impeachment trial of Trump in the Senate was again very appropriate here. Corruption is simple in  criminal cases involving politicians. It means a politician is prohibited from using his or her office for personal game. This is an abuse of power. Exactly what Trump was charged with in the Senate hearing. And exactly what he did here. The use of the pardon power for personal game, such as keeping unflattering witnesses quiet is a simple quid pro quo. This completes the Mueller report where Trump tried from the beginning to obstruct the course of justice.

Who will have faith in American justice after this? Who will think it is rotten to the core? What do the millions of Trump supporters think about him now?

Did you know Tump won 3 or 4 Noble Peace Prizes?

 

For quite some time, significant portions of modern society have demonstrated an impressive devotion to ignorance. They wear their ignorance on their sleeve, suggesting they are proud of it. As a result it is hardly surprising that ignorance seems so often to be on the march.

Just yesterday I posted about Baldwin’s profound  idea that “Ignorance, allied with power, is the most ferocious enemy justice can have.” Then later the same day I listened to a stellar example. A television interviewer on one of the Comedy News shows interviewed a Trump supporter. The interviewer wondered why the supporter continued to support Trump after he was soundly defeated in the 2020 election and his claims of voter fraud had been repeatedly rejected  by the courts. The woman gave an amazing answer. She said, “I support Trump because he won 3 or 4 Noble Peace prizes.” Then when the interviewer mockingly said, “You are very knowledgeable,” to which the woman responded “Thank you.” She had no idea she was being mocked.

Such stunning ignorance dos not happen by accident. It is the product of decades of disdain for knowledge, education, and reasoning. That’s what we get for glorifying ignorance.

I know that there are plenty of ignorant supporters of the left and the right. Ignorance is not unique to Trump supporters. There is plenty of ignorance to go around. But we must always remember, such ignorance is dangerous.

 

Ignorance Allied with power is a ferocious enemy of justice

If a person gives up on evidence, he or she gives up on truth. If, for example, faith is the foundation of belief one can only convince another of the truth of that belief if that other person shares the same faith. A Muslim cannot convince a Christian of a statement of faith. Similarly a Christian cannot convince the Muslim of a statement of faith either. A Muslim could persuade a Christian that the book in her bag is red by opening the bag and showing it to the Christian. In other words by showing the evidence to the Christian, the Christian can be convinced that the book is in fact red. If we give up basing beliefs on evidence we will relegate a lot of claims to realm of faith where agreement will not be possible.

The same goes for hunches. For example, when Trump said he had a hunch that the coronavirus would soon disappear that would not convince anyone, other than a person who had faith in Trump. Many of them had that faith so he could persuade them. They would believe him no matter how likely it was that he was right. That is why evidence is better than faith, or hunches, or feelings, or gut reactions. Faith is all right in our personal lives. In social lives where we live and interact with each other we need evidence.

Without evidence then the world of shared facts shrinks dramatically. The only shared facts then are those between members of the same faith, or between people who have the same feeling, or the same hunch. As result of the world of shared facts having shrunk many more people are ignorant than otherwise should be the case. That is an unfortunate consequence of abandoning evidence. And there is another consequence of that.

When people in power are ignorant, the rest of us had better look out. As James Baldwin said, in his 1972 book No Name in the Street: “Ignorance, allied with power, is the most ferocious enemy justice can have.”

 In the summer of 2020 we saw a good example of this when Black Lives Matter and their supporters took to the streets to protest police brutality against black lives and the long history of black oppression.

 

As Peter Baker, chief White House correspondent for The New York Times, recently pointed out: Not in generations has a sitting president so overtly declared himself the candidate of white America.”

Trump allied himself with right wing groups who wanted to maintain confederate flags and monuments so that racial bigotry and hatred could be legitimized. By doing so Trump tried to hide the roots of racism. In other words he allied himself with ignorance, as he has so often done. As a result the streets of America were made much more dangerous that summer than they ought to have been. He did that after all to emphasize to his base of white supremacists and their conscious and unconscious supporters that he was on their side. It is hardly surprising that he would do this in the midst of a tight election campaign. As Henry Giroux said, “After all, his white supremacist ideology is the cornerstone of his appeal to the reactionary and bigoted elements of his base.”

For exactly the same reason Trump got angry with NASCAR for banning the Confederate flag. It was what Giroux called “organized forgetting”. And when that is aligned with the most powerful office in the world, the American Presidency, that is, as Baldwin said, the most ferocious enemy justice can have.

Trump also proudly tweeted that critical race theory should be banned from all federal agencies because “this is a sickness that cannot be allowed to continue . Please report any sightings so we can quickly extinguish! ” People should be ignorant instead. That was more congenial with Trump’s ideology–white supremacy.

He also tweeted “How to be anti-white 101 permanently cancelled.” Really what he wanted to do is erase history. He wanted to show just the good parts. The parts that exalted whiteness. I am not saying whites are all bad. I am just saying they were not all good, and to suggest otherwise is a lie and an attempt to bury the truth. It is an attempt to entrench ignorance.

Giroux described it this way:

“Trump’s ignorance floods the Twitter landscape daily. He denies climate change along with the dangers that it poses to humanity, discredits scientific evidence in the face of a massive pandemic, claims that systemic racism doesn’t exist in the United States and mangles history with his ignorance of the past.”

Implicit in Baldwin’s warning is that the greatest threat to democratic societies is a collective ignorance that legitimizes forms of organized forgetting, social amnesia and the death of civic literacy.

Under the Trump regime, historical amnesia is used as a weapon of miseducation, politics and power. Trump wants to erase the struggles of those who fought for justice in the past because they offer dangerous memories and lessons to the protesters marching in the streets today.

Efforts to erase the progress of the past, including emancipation, is a centrepiece of authoritarian societies. These efforts cause public memory to wither and the threads of authoritarianism to take root and become normalized. They’re often accompanied by a broader attack on critical education, civic literacy, investigative journalists and the critical media.

When people stop looking at the evidence, they stop looking for the truth and they allow ignorance to rule. And that helps injustice to flourish. And that is an ugly thing.

Is it time to give up on America?

 

I love the United States of America. I have gone there many times. I have met many Americans that I like and respect. So it is very hard for me to say this. Is it time to give up on America?

What has shaken me is the realization that after 4 years of seeing Trump in the media every single day, no one in America can say they did not know him. No one can say Trump fooled them. Not after 4 years of hearing and seeing him on the television every single  day. He is probably the most famous person in the history of the world!

 

In 2020, no one can say that they voted for Trump because they could not abide voting for that corrupt Hillary Clinton. This time a majority of Americans chose Biden over Trump, but just by a relative sliver. In fact, I strongly suspect that had it not been for the coronavirus more people would have voted for Trump than Biden. In fact more white people  voted for Trump than Biden. That is also something very difficult for me to comprehend. More on that later.

Today I just want to talk about corruption. I do this listening to the news and hearing that multiple people have been asking Trump for pardons. Most of these are his cronies! I have never heard of that before. I have always thought the American system of granting pardons was itself open to corruption, but Trump seems to be taking it to an entirely new level. We will have to see before we judge.

But consider what he has already done. He has pardoned his former Cabinet Minister Michael Flynn even though he pled guilty. And remember Flynn was charged with lying to the FBI to protect Donald Trump!

But, even worse, was the case of Trump’s old crony Roger Stone who kept his mouth shut and did not rat out Donald Trump. In July of 2020 Trump  commuted the sentence of Mr. Roger Stone who had  been convicted of obstructing a federal investigation into Donald Trump! At the time Stone was convicted Trump praised him for not talking, comparing him favourably to his former lawyer Michael Cohen,  hinting that Stone would eventually get some help.  At the time Trump sounded just like a Mafia Don.

And Trump eventually helped his close friend. Stone was not pardoned, but his sentence was commuted. That meant Stone was released from jail or prison, for no reason other than the fact that Donald Trump was grateful. This caused Republican Senator Mitt Romney to say, the commutation was an act of “unprecedented, historic corruption.”

Now there appears to be a caravan of people looking for pardons. I have never heard of a president pardoning friends, relatives, or associates. Is this not absolutely corrupt?

The real point of course is not that Trump is corrupt. That surprises no. The real point is that more than 73 million people voted for Trump over Biden after he did that. Millions of Americans don’t care how corrupt their President is. I find that shocking. I guess I am just a Pollyanna.

God Save America

 

Some people think I have been ranting about Trump. I have been ranting about America. I know many Americans and like most of them. But I just cannot understand how Trump can have such widespread support.

In 2016 many people said he won because Hillary Clinton was even worse. First of all that claim mystifies me. I think comparing Hillary Clinton to Donald Trump is like comparing a trickle to a tsunami. I see nothing resembling equivalence there. The far right has hated her since the first time her husband Bill Clinton ran for governor of Arkansas. I know many people hate her, but I really don’t know why. If any of my readers do please let me know.

But more importantly, in 2020 the Americans had a pretty decent alternative. Biden may not have been very exciting, but it’s hard to argue that he was not a decent man. Who can say that about Trump? Yet in 2020 more than 73 million Americans picked Trump over Biden. Thankfully 4 or 5 million more voted for Biden, but that is still a lot of support for Trump.

According to the editorial board of the New York Times,

“Mr. Trump’s ruinous tenure already has gravely damaged the United States at home and around the world. He has abused the power of his office and denied the legitimacy of his political opponents, shattering the norms that have bound the nation together for generations. He has subsumed the public interest to the profitability of his business and political interests. He has shown a breathtaking disregard for the lives and liberties of Americans. He is a man unworthy of the office he holds.”

 

 

The Times makes mistakes. Every media does. It is far from perfect, but it is not,  as Trump alleges Fake News. It is a serious newspaper with serious journalists and is internationally respected as among the best of the United States media. And yet they came out so strongly in favour of Biden over Trump it is as if the two candidates were in different universes.

The Times did not stop there in their critique. Here is how they continued:

Mr. Trump stands without any real rivals as the worst American president in modern history. In 2016, his bitter account of the nation’s ailments struck a chord with many voters. But the lesson of the last four years is that he cannot solve the nation’s pressing problems because he is the nation’s most pressing problem.

He is a racist demagogue presiding over an increasingly diverse country; an isolationist in an interconnected world; a showman forever boasting about things he has never done, and promising to do things he never will.”

 

How could so many Americans pick this man as their leader, rather than Joe Biden?

In my opinion, most egregious of all was Trump lying to the American people about the dangers of the Covid-19 pandemic leading many Americans, and even others around the globe in doubt about whether or not they should bother taking measures to protect themselves and their loved ones. As the New York Times editorial board said,

“Mr. Trump’s inadequacies as a leader have been on particularly painful display during the coronavirus pandemic. Instead of working to save lives, Mr. Trump has treated the pandemic as a public relations problem. He lied about the danger, challenged the expertise of public health officials and resisted the implementation of necessary precautions; he is still trying to force the resumption of economic activity without bringing the virus under control.

As the economy pancaked, he signed an initial round of aid for Americans who lost their jobs. Then the stock market rebounded and, even though millions remained out of work, Mr. Trump lost interest in their plight.

In September, he declared that the virus “affects virtually nobody” the day before the death toll from the disease in the United States topped 200,000.

Nine days later, Mr. Trump fell ill.”

 

How could so many Americans pick this man to represent them rather than Joe Biden? Here is what the New York Times editorial board said,

“The foundations of American civil society were crumbling before Mr. Trump rode down the escalator of Trump Tower in June 2015 to announce his presidential campaign. But he has intensified the worst tendencies in American politics: Under his leadership, the nation has grown more polarized, more paranoid and meaner.

He has pitted Americans against each other, mastering new broadcast media like Twitter and Facebook to rally his supporters around a virtual bonfire of grievances and to flood the public square with lies, disinformation and propaganda. He is relentless in his denigration of opponents and reluctant to condemn violence by those he regards as allies. At the first presidential debate in September, Mr. Trump was asked to condemn white supremacists. He responded by instructing one violent gang, the Proud Boys, to “stand back and stand by.”

 

And this is the man millions chose to lead them rather than a much simpler, ordinary, and decent man—Joe Biden. Does this not tell us a lot about America?

Of course , Trump did much more than that. He polluted the American democracy. He spread vicious conspiracy theories. He mocked handicapped people. He treated soldiers like suckers and losers. He bragged about sexually assaulting women.

Yes this is the man who millions of American voted for. He did not get a majority of the votes, thank goodness. But a lot of Americans preferred him to the much more plain and modest Joe Biden.

God save America. I don’t know who else can.

 

73 Million Americans voted for a Bully

 

Americans voted for a man with clear authoritarian if not fascist tendencies. As Conservative commentator and former speech writer for George Bush, David Frum, said, “we don’t realize how ready people are to enjoy the sight of cruelty. The Romans had a Colosseum for 50,000 to 60,000 people and it was filled several times a week for 350 years!”

According to Frum, when Trump ran for the Republican nomination for President in 2015 he was not a hypocrite. He did not pretend to be a good husband, or good father or even a good man. As Frum said, “He was frankly who he was—a bully. He was cruel and he was not ashamed of it. He invited you to enjoy it and a lot of people did.” It is not by accident that many authoritarian dictators are bullies. It almost goes with the territory.

Essentially, Fascism is the philosophy of the bully. Good examples were Hitler and Mussolini. They liked to pick on the weak and vulnerable to show how strong they were. Pick on Jews, or Slavs, or Homosexuals. People who couldn’t fight back.

Now we have a modern fascist—Donald Trump. He wanted to build a fence to keep out the Mexicans from America. Then he promised to make them pay for it. Then he had the idea to keep all Muslims out of America. In 21st century America Muslims are the new Jews. There is no easier target. They constitute only about 1% of the population of America, or less. So naturally that is who Donald Trump the Presidential candidate attacked. He is too cowardly to go after stronger groups.

At first I thought Trump was just a clown. I mocked his increasingly outrageous and increasingly inane comments. Now I know he is much worse than that, he is a fascist–i.e. he is a bully.

And that is what approximately 73 million people voted for in the U.S. in 2020—a bully. I think you can tell a lot about people by who they vote for.

 

Americans voted for a Slow Moving Coup

 

Bill Maher was the first person I heard say that Trump would not leave the Presidency if he was voted out of office. Others later echoed those fears. For good reason. Trump provided ample evidence that he might do that. As I write, about 3 weeks after the election of 2020, it appears, though it is not certain, that the American democracy has held and the erosive powers have lost. Yet that is still not clear. President Trump and his minions including a vast array of lawyers, each one appearing more comical than the last, has lost about 34 consecutive court cases challenging the election without a victory. Though I heard someone say he won 2 minor victories. So as far as I know the status is not clear. Not yet. I must admit that I have started to stop paying attention already so there may have been changes.

 

Many are calling Trump’s actions an “attempted coup”. Perhaps his most egregious post election action (so far) was the blatant attempt to persuade Republican politicians from Michigan to overturn the substantial Biden majority of votes he obtained on flimsy grounds of voter fraud. So far it looks like the coup will fail. But if it does fail, it has come close. Frighteningly close actually.

And what really bothers me as I keep repeating is that about 73 million of Americans voted for him after it was clear to one and all that this is what he is like. They knew him and liked him enough to vote for him.

Here is what Bill Maher said, way back in 2017 (his list would be a lot longer if it was made in 2020) :

“This is a slow moving coup. Here is a list of things that Donald Trump does that sounds like a 3rd world dictator: You put your name on buildings; you appoint your family members to positions of power; your rallies are scary; you hate the press, and threaten to lock some of them up; you want military parades, you use the office for financial gain; you love other dictators; you lie so freely people can’t tell the difference any more between lies and truth; you crave the constant ridiculous over-the-top flattery that political leaders need. For example, Kim Jong-un of North Korea. They say that he learned to drive at the age of 3, he trained his body so that he never needs to urinate or defecate, he invented the hamburger, when he was born a new star was created and winter turned to spring, the first time he golfed he had 11 holes in one. This is us now. This is America. This is what’s so scary. I see where he is going. When his sycophants lavish praise on him to his face in absurd amounts he stands there soaking it all in as if it is natural and totally de. He served. He nods his head. It’s creepy.”

 

Yes it is creepy. Stephen Colbert used the word fascism to describe this. What is really creepy is Americans voted for this in huge numbers. That tells us a lot about America.  That is creepy too.

Not happy with American Election

 

People asked me if I was happy about the elections results of 2020, The answer is obvious—of course I was. But am I satisfied? Not by a long shot!

In the 2020 presidential election of 2020 approximately 73 million Americans voted for Donald Trump after seeing him on television and reading about him every single day. No person in the history of the world has become more famous or well known. Trump can bask in that thought. That is what narcissists  and demagogues do.

No American can say they were deceived about who Trump was. Trump cannot hold back because he always thinks he can sell us on his narrative. That is what he did his whole life as a real estate developer. Every American knew exactly who they were voting for. And who did they vote for? This is not a pretty picture.

 

Approximately 73 million Americans voted for a president they knew had lied to them about the severity of Covid-19 pandemic because he did not want to alarm them. So he lied instead, thus lulling them into a false sense of security so they failed to take precautions to protect themselves, their loved ones, and the communities in which they lived.

 

Approximately 73 million Americans voted for a president they knew was a white nationalist who refused to renounce white supremacy and instead asked the Proud boys to ‘Stand back and stand by” a call that they accepted as an endorsement.

Approximately 73 million Americans voted for a president they knew voted for president who mocked handicapped people.

Approximately 73 million Americans voted for a president they who they knew thought that because he was a star he could freely grope any woman he met.

Approximately 73 million Americans voted for a president they knew  tried to pressure a foreign country (the Ukraine) to do him a personal favor of investing one of his political opponents by withholding funds that had been approved by Congress and which the Ukraine needed to protect itself from Russia.

Approximately 74 million Americans voted for a president they knew claimed that as president he could do whatever he wanted fo nothing he did was illegal.

Approximately 73 million Americans voted for a president they knew abandoned long time American allies (the Kurds) who were under attack by the Turks, thus forcing them to turn to Russia for protection, proving that “these colors run” contrary to American propaganda.

What does this say about America?   That is the real question.

 

Thank goodness for the Courts

I don’t always say this, but thank goodness for the courts. They are not perfect. Far from it in fact. They don’t always find the truth. Especially when they become slaves to precedents. They make mistakes. Sometimes big ones. But at least they tend to follow the evidence. Not weak speculation or windy lawyers. Lawyers must present evidence and rational argument. Not speculation or disinformation. The public might, but courts won’t buy that.

This is exactly what the United States needs now in this time of deep peril brought on by a shameful aspiring autocrat who can’t bear the thought of losing and is willing to defile the most sacred of their institutions.

As we all know by now, the Trump administration is trying to hold on to power with remarkable tenacity and a phalanx of lawyers. Maybe you want to contribute to their cause. They are accepting donations.

Since months before the election Trump was readying his supporters in case he lost the election, by claiming entirely without evidence that the election would be the most corrupt and fraudulent in history. As soon as the counting was nearing completion the Trump campaign sent those lawyers out to challenge the votes in states where they claimed the Democrats had “stolen the election.”

One interesting case occurred in Pennsylvania a state that is critically important to the Trump campaign. They alleged massive voter fraud. At least that is what they said in public. The Trump campaign has already been caught saying that in public, but then making much milder claims in court. The problem with milder claims is that they won’t be enough to overturn the election even if they are proven in court.

This was at the time the 29th lawsuit filed by the Trump campaign that was recently dismissed or withdrawn. Since then 5 more have been dismissed and none has succeeded as far as I can tell. The only good thing about those lawsuits is that a lot of lawyers got gainful employment.

That  particular lawsuit tried to invalidate millions of Pennsylvania mail-in votes. The federal court judge, U.S. District Judge Matthew W. Brann, a registered Republican, threw the case out of court because the argument of the Trump campaign just did not hold up water. This was the case in which 2 prior law firms withdrew from the case causing former Mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani to take over at the last minute. He tried to argue that Pennsylvania should be prevented from certifying the election because some municipalities allowed some mail-in ballots to be cured because they had technical errors or glitches which they argued meant all the ballots in Pennsylvania should be thrown out.

The judge made very clear what he thought of the legal argument of the Trump team of lawyers:

 

“One might expect that when seeking such a startling outcome plaintiff’s lawyers would come to court formidably armed with compelling legal arguments and factual proof of rampant corruption. That has not happened. Instead this court has been presented with strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations.”

 

The Washington Post described the judge’s opinion this way:

“Trump’s attorneys had haphazardly stitched this allegation together ‘like Frankenstein’s Monster’ in an attempt to avoid unfavorable legal precedent.”

The arguments were not nearly enough for the judge to disenfranchise nearly 7 million voters in the State of Pennsylvania. 34 Trump campaign lawsuits have now been dismissed in various U.S. courts.

It has been very difficult for people to get at the truth amid the blizzard of claims of corruption and fraud by the Trump campaign and it is nice to see a court not swayed by empty rhetoric.

There is still hope for American democracy when the courts seek the truth. It’s enough to make an old recovering lawyer proud. Sometimes the law is an ass as Charles Dickens said, but sometimes it does good.