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Tired Of The Trump Drama

Even if there's a reasonable explanation for the Mar-A-Lago document stash, why would the ex-president do this?
Screen Shot 2022-08-28 at 2.25.40 AM

As outrageous as the FBI raid on Mar-A-Lago was at first, it was always smart to wait until we knew what the FBI was after, and why, before drawing firm conclusions. Now that we have a better idea, it's clear that the situation was, and is, serious. The former president was believed to have in his possession highly classified documents, some of which disclosed top national security information, that he was not entitled to have. It appears that the government tried repeatedly to get those documents back from him, with no luck.

It seems clear to me, based on what we now know from the redacted affidavit released on Friday, that there were serious and substantive reasons for the raid. From the NYT story:

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The 38-page affidavit, released on Friday, asserted that there was “probable cause to believe that evidence of obstruction will be found at” Mr. Trump’s Mar-a-Lago compound, indicating that prosecutors had evidence suggesting efforts to impede the recovery of government documents.

Since the release of the search warrant, which listed three criminal laws as the foundation of the investigation, one — the Espionage Act — has received the most attention. Discussion has largely focused on the spectacle of the F.B.I. finding documents marked as highly classified and Mr. Trump’s questionable claims that he had declassified everything held at his residence.

But by some measures, the crime of obstruction is as, or even more, serious a threat to Mr. Trump or his close associates. The version investigators are using, known as Section 1519, is part of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, a broad set of reforms enacted in 2002 after financial scandals at companies like Enron, Arthur Andersen and WorldCom.

The heavily redacted affidavit provides new details of the government’s efforts to retrieve and secure the material in Mr. Trump’s possession, highlighting how prosecutors may be pursuing a theory that the former president, his aides or both might have illegally obstructed an effort of well over a year to recover sensitive documents that do not belong to him.

There might be a reasonable defense for Trump. Maybe. I suppose we will see. But at this point, even if Trump is able to avoid legal consequences for this behavior, what I can't figure out is why he got himself into this mess. It sounds like he really did have in his possession highly sensitive documents that did not belong to him, and that he resisted for a year good-faith efforts by the government to recover them. If that's true, then why would he have held on to them? Why the drama? Was there a principled reason, or is this just Trump being Trump: sloppy and reckless and egocentric?

We have ten weeks to go until the fall election. Given the economic situation, and given how far to the Left the Biden Democrats have governed on social issues, Republicans ought to retake the house in a landslide, and ought to have a decent shot at winning the Senate. They're now talking about how the Senate looks increasingly out of reach for the GOP, and that the Democrats may not lose nearly as big in the House as they have feared -- and might even hold on to it.

If conservatives want to stop the Democrats from wrecking the country, and -- stay with me here -- actually do things to turn around America in decline, it is clear that they have to get Trump out of the way. Can conservatives really afford this kind of pointless, destructive drama any longer? I'll say it again: in Ron DeSantis, the party has an accomplished governor who has many of Trump's good qualities, without the moronic self-sabotage.

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Peter Pratt
Peter Pratt
I don't want Trump to run again, but this raid is a corrupt abuse of power. Those opposing Trump in government are acting much like those Communist police you wrote about in Live Not By Lies. The NYT is their Pravda.

Instead of giving any credence to our very corrupt DOJ/FBI, start with the assumption they are lying. You would be better off.
schedule 3 months ago
    JON FRAZIER
    JON FRAZIER
    Exactly what is so abusive about the raid? By all accounts the agents conducted themselves professionally and with proper courtesy, not behaving like proverbial jack-booted thugs. They didn't help themselves to Melania's jewelry, didn't strip-search Trump (who I think wasn't even there), didn't beat up the butler or tup the maid, and didn't break anything. Again, you're acting like Trump and all he owns is some sort of holy space beyond the reach of mere mortals no matter what the situation.
    schedule 3 months ago
      Michael Cole
      Michael Cole
      Absolutely. For that matter everyone should stop calling the event a “raid” which conjures up images of a swat team or something. It was an execution of a search warrant.
      schedule 3 months ago
      Peter Kurilecz
      Peter Kurilecz
      there was no need for a search warrant when they already had a subpoena and materials had already been turned over in the past. this was overly broad. for example if they found a single classified document in a box they could seize that box as well as anyothers that were proximate to that box without even examining the boxes
      schedule 3 months ago
        JON FRAZIER
        JON FRAZIER
        This sounds like pettifoggery par excellence. And no, Trump and his people had not been cooperating with demands to return the documents-- they had had well over a year to do so. And indeed, why the frack did Trump take that stuff in the first place? In white collar jobs I've held it's standard practice that you do NOT take firm documents with you when you leave-- in fact, if you're dumb enough to put personal files on firm systems, then they're no longer yours and you can't take them with you.
        I'm am beyond sick and tired of his fan boys treating him like he's some godlike being beyond the rules that govern us mere mortals!
        schedule 3 months ago
          Rob G
          Rob G
          That'll happen about the same time that the left stops portraying him as a cross between Chuck Norris and Mussolini, i.e., a complete knucklehead who is nevertheless impervious to attack and fully capable of taking over the U.S. and forcibly instituting fascism. The MAGA fan-boys aren't the only ones with Trump on the brain.
          schedule 3 months ago
      Kim Van Marter
      Kim Van Marter
      You are clueless of what's really going on here Watch something besides CCN and wake up. Listen to Steve bannon on on real American voice. Why didn't they go after Obama and Hilary the real bad one? You are probably one of the clueless that think the election wasn't stolen from the American people.
      schedule 3 months ago
    Rob G
    Rob G
    I don't trust DT or the DOJ/FBI, and I take anything that comes out of either D.C. or NYC with a huge hunk of salt. As the liberal columnist I quoted the other day said, "taking Trump down" is one thing, how you take him down is quite another. Having said that, I do believe that if there is actually any meat on this story, it presents a possible opportunity for the GOP to distance itself from Trump. They will lose some MAGA voters of course, but they will gain credibility on the non-MAGA right which might help them in November. And there would be less concern about DT trying to run again in 2024.

    My chief concern for this year is that the GOP gains/maintains control of at least one of the houses of Congress. Full control of the Federal government by the Dems would be a nightmare; those woke clowns could do a hell of a lot of damage, even if the regime only lasted two years. Ditto the GOP by the way, although the damage would likely be of a different sort. But obviously there's no chance of that happening this year, so the Dems are the bigger concern.
    schedule 3 months ago
      JON FRAZIER
      JON FRAZIER
      The Democrats have had control of Congress and the White House for the last year and a half.
      schedule 3 months ago
        Rob G
        Rob G
        The Senate is 50/50. That prevents them from having complete control.
        schedule 3 months ago
          JON FRAZIER
          JON FRAZIER
          But they have passed some legislation. Anything particularly radical in that mix (a different question, please note, from "Is this stuff good legislation?"). I have yet to see anything come anywhere near enactment that would be over the top. And of course: the filibuster.
          schedule 3 months ago
Mark W Kimpel
Mark W Kimpel
Based on how we know Trump and the FBI operate, here's my theory: Trump was in a hurry and sloppy about getting his stuff out of the Oval because he was not planning on leaving. He yelled at movers and told them to just stuff things in boxes, which they did. Once the Archives requested documents back, Trump threw a tantrum about giving up "his stuff". Now he's just dug in and perhaps enjoying the attention. OTOH, I don't trust the FBI affidavit. If you read the unredacted portions, they say things like Trump "may have....". Reminds me a lot of the FISA warrant application in 2016. It is possible that Trump AND the FBI are acting in bad faith, which depresses me to no end.
schedule 3 months ago
Peter Kurilecz
Peter Kurilecz
NARA and GSA pack up the boxes. which NARA/GSA staffer said it was okay to ship the boxes to Florida. Find out the names of those staffers. FOIA the procedures manual
schedule 3 months ago
Chris Karr
Chris Karr
Why does Trump do anything?

Because he wants to, he's entitled to, and he believes he'll get away with it.

And because there's never been enough adults in the room willing to swat the septuagenarian toddler's hand and deliver a firm "NO".
schedule 3 months ago