Jonathan Turley: If Trump Meeting is Illegal, then Clinton Dossier is Criminal Too … Actually Much More Criminal
SO WHY DOES THE MSM ONLY SEE THAT TRUMP’S ACTION WERE CRIMINAL AND NOT HILLARY?
From Jonathan Turley of The Hill comes the following logic when trying to figure out why the liberal media would call one action by Donald Trump Jr. a crime, but completely dismissing the actions of Hillary Clinton and the Russian dossier. The liberal media in their efforts of “gotcha” of President Trump at any and all cost have basically described a crime, that of which Hillary Clinton did, not Donald Trump.
CNN, co-host Alisyn Camerota claims claimed that it is an “open and shut case” that taking dirt on Hillary from the Russians was a crime by the Trump campaign. Really? The CNN host does realize that no dirt was gained and the meeting was ended soon after, correct? Now compare that with what Hillary Clinton did. Dear Ms. Camerota, then what would you call it when Hillary Clinton bought and paid for the so called Russian Dossier from former British spy Christopher Steele (a foreign national) who dealt with the Russians to get info? As lawyer and legal scholar, Jonathan Turley clearly points out in a fair and unbiased manner, fi the LEFT thinks what the Trump campaign did was a crime, then the Clinton campaign was times 100! One was a meeting, end of story, the other was a bought and paid for Russian dossier by Hillary.
Take the crime being proclaimed as “open and shut.” Before Camerota came to this conclusion, the CNN anchors discussed federal election laws that make it a “crime for any person to solicit, accept, or receive, anything of value from a foreign person or U.S. political campaign for the purpose of influencing any elections for federal office.” Thus, if Trump Jr. was willing to review evidence of criminal conduct by Clinton, it must be a type of foreign campaign contribution and, therefore, a federal crime.
Such logic is so inescapable that Camerota responded, “I mean, what more really is there to talk about after that one?” The answer is “a lot more.” The Russians setting up the meeting said their government had evidence of criminal conduct connected to the Clinton Foundation soliciting illegal donations. According to witnesses, Trump Jr. asked for the promised evidence but Russian attorney Natalia Veselnitskaya said she did not have it and only wanted to talk about Magnitsky Act limitations on Russian adoptions. The meeting ended shortly thereafter.
Consider the implications of what the critics are suggesting. It would mean treating information as a form of political contribution as no different from money, for purposes of a criminal charge, even information about criminal acts by an election candidate. That would mean administrations could prosecute political opponents for merely attending meetings with foreign individuals to discuss the criminal conduct of a sitting American president. Democratic politicians could be charged if they reviewed evidence of alleged bribes or quid pro quos by Trump.
Indeed, it could be any foreign source, since the law is ambiguous. Does that not include foreign organizations like environmental and other public interest groups? How about journalists or lawyers sharing evidence of crimes by powerful politicians? Fortunately, courts likely would reject such an interpretation as a major threat to First Amendment freedoms of speech and even the press. So why are so many journalists and activists blind to implications of such an expansion? The answer is rage. We live in the age of rage, from Trump tweets to cable news crusades.
The latest media frenzy is part of the Newtonian principles that now guide both politics and journalism: “To every action there is always opposed an equal reaction.” However, journalists and lawyers are trained to avoid immediate involuntary reactions, particularly when the potential costs are so prohibitive. Responding to a sweeping political tweet with a sweeping legal interpretation is neither equal nor wise. In the end, the Trump Tower controversy is not based on “fake news” as claimed by the president, but the federal crime alleged by the media is based on fake law.