This past weekend, the media and Congressional Democrats are doing the job that attractive women in scanty Spandex do for bad magicians. They’re flashing their Flynn plea at Americans to distract them so they don’t notice what’s really going on, like the unconscionable acquittal of Kate Steinle’s sanctuary city-protected, repeat felon killer or the hard-fought Senate passage of the GOP tax reform bill.
They’re hysterically excited over the idea that Flynn, having been hounded into bankruptcy and the loss of his house by notoriously unethical prosecutors with an unlimited budget of our money ($5 million and counting) is now so desperate that he’s agreed to plead guilty to one count of making a false statement to the FBI about a matter that has nothing to do with Russian collusion to affect the election – you remember, that thing Mueller is supposed to be investigating?
Trump’s critics desperately hope this means Flynn will now testify against Trump and his family and send them all to federal prison for the unpardonable crime of beating Hillary Clinton (to date, still the only major presidential candidate who is known to have exposed classified information to Russia, taken money from Russian companies, and paid shady Russian sources for dirt designed to affect the election.)
In fact, they’re so excited about that prospect that Brian Ross, ABC’s Chief Investigative Correspondent (sorry, I had to take a second to stop laughing after typing that), claimed that Flynn was going to testify that Trump, as a candidate, ordered him to make contact with the Russians. That bombshell was spread far and wide by gleeful “objective journalists,” and the reading of it on “The View” sent Joy Behar into paroxysms of joy as the studio audience cheered.
One problem with that…well, a lot actually, but one big one. It wasn’t true. At all. ABC was forced to issue a “clarification,” which is a four-dollar word for “Oops!” (Reporters whose delicate feelings are too bruised to attend a White House Christmas party because Trump keeps accusing them of airing “fake news” might want to consider that there’s an easy way to stop it: QUIT AIRING FAKE NEWS!)
The Flynn plea actually involved him lying to the FBI about how he was allegedly told by someone in President-elect Trump’s Administration (likely Jared Kushner), shortly before the Inaugural, to contact the Russian ambassador for discussions on sanctions and an upcoming UN vote on Israel. None of that is illegal. In fact, as National Security Adviser, it was his job. It’s SOP: Obama also spoke to foreign officials before taking office about what his policies would be.
Here’s another news flash: even if it had happened when Trump was a candidate, it still wouldn’t be illegal. Private citizens have a First Amendment right to talk to Russians. Try it yourself, if you like. Although be aware that if you do it by phone or the Internet, the NSA will probably intercept it; and if there are any lingering Obama appointees who have a grudge against you, it will likely be illegally leaked to the media to destroy your career and reputation while the felon who leaked it gets off scot-free. Or as that’s known in certain dark corners of the Justice Department: “justice.”
I’m not a legal expert, but Andrew McCarthy of National Review is, and here’s his take on Flynn’s plea: READ MORE
Another legal expert, David French, also thinks that like such previous trophies of out-of-control prosecutors as Scooter Libby and Martha Stewart, Flynn was badgered, frightened and confused into lying about something that wasn’t illegal. And it had nothing to do with collusion or the election.
The Lawfare blog takes a darker view, but in all their long and ominous analysis, they somehow never mention any law that Trump or his top people allegedly violated.
One legal expert from the Watergate days told Fox News that the only thing he can imagine Mueller using as grounds for indictment is the Logan Act, a constitutionally suspect law that nobody has ever been prosecuted under. There have been only two indictments under it, the last one in 1852. He said if Mueller cites the Logan Act, Trump should just fire him.
Gen. Flynn learned a very hard lesson about dealing with overzealous special counsels. He should have just refused to talk to them. Or if he was going to lie to the FBI, he should have told them his name was Hillary Clinton. That way, he could have destroyed any evidence and been declared innocent before they ever even questioned him.
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