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Not Everything Is a Witch Hunt, Donald Trump

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | August 9, 2022 |

By Dustin Rowles | Politics | August 9, 2022 |


The thing about Attorney General Merrick Garland and FBI Director Christopher Wray — often to the consternation of the “do something” folks — is that they are not political people. Christopher Wray was appointed by Trump, although I think it was at the behest of the then Republican establishment, and the reason why President Obama nominated Garland to the Supreme Court in the first place is that he thought he might be able to persuade a Republican or two to agree to a vote on him (Obama was wrong). Garland is a moderate former federal prosecutor, and he and Wray are sober, meticulous men who are not likely to cause a political ruckus unless it is absolutely called for.

That’s what essentially makes the execution of a search warrant on Donald Trump’s Mar A Lago estate so striking. There’s no way either man would step into a pile of sh*t without wearing very thick boots, so there must have been well-considered probable cause to justify a search warrant for a former President who is expected to run again in 2024.

We don’t know the exact details of the search, although it appeared to be focused on boxes of classified documents — some so sensitive they couldn’t be described — that Trump took from the White House when he left. The National Archives had been requesting the 15 boxes for months, and Trump only returned them when they threatened legal action. I suspect he didn’t return everything and kept some of the more highly classified documents. What information is in these documents? No clue. But I seriously doubt that Wray and Garland would pull the trigger on a search warrant, break into Trump’s safe, and spend much of the day searching his residence if it was because Trump had kept a few love letters from Kim Jong Un.

The search, meanwhile, is running parallel to the House Oversight Committee’s investigation into “serious violations” of the Presidential Records Act. Trump has been known to destroy documents and even flush them down the toilet. Is it the worst thing that Trump has ever done? Hardly. But the law is the law, and former President or future Presidential candidate aside, Trump is not above it.

Republicans, obviously, are in a tizzy (Marjorie Taylor Green was out there tweeting “defund the FBI”), screeching about overreach when many of these same Republicans insisted on multiple investigations into Hillary Clinton when she was also running for President. “We’re 100 days away from midterm elections. President Trump is likely going to run again in 2024,” Senator Lindsey Graham said. “Launching such an investigation of a former President this close to an election is beyond problematic.”

Do you know what’s “beyond problematic”? Remember when the FBI reopened an investigation into Hillary Clinton two weeks before the election and basically cost her the Presidency? Clinton was cleared two days before the election, but by then, the damage was done.

President Biden, meanwhile, found out about the search like everyone else: On Twitter.

As for whether destroying, hiding, stealing, or holding onto documents in violation of the Presidential Records Act will affect Trump’s ability to run in 2024 … you know what? I’d be a lot more worried about the half-dozen other ongoing criminal investigations into Donald Trump’s actions than a few missing papers. Not everything is a “witch hunt.” Sometimes, authorities go after you because you broke the f**king law.