The Political Report — August 3, 2023

It’s Trump arraignment day and I guess TV news is gonna follow the former President’s travel to DC like it did OJ’s odyssey on the LA freeway. Turn that off. Go see Oppenheimer (or if you are me, I am going to try to see the last episode of Better Call Saul that is left — amazing series).

The NYTimes published what might be the best editorial on Trump’s indictment and what it means for us as a country. Ryan Goodman and Andrew Weissman tell us why these charges matter and how these charges clarify the Trump project of undermining our democracy for his own gain.

The New Jack Smith Indictment Is Where Whataboutism Goes to Die (Gift article)
“In this case, the Trump stratagem is unmasked. Given the record of robust prosecutions of Jan. 6 foot soldiers and Mr. Trump’s responsibility for their actions, he has had to resort to saying the Capitol attack was good, and he and his enablers have lauded convicted felons as heroes and “political prisoners.” Mr. Trump’s continued statements in favor of the Jan. 6 defendants can and likely will be used against him in any trial.

As the narrative of the indictment lays out, Mr. Trump’s schemes — to sell the big lie and promote election fraud even when he privately conceded to advisers the claims were “unsupported” and “crazy” — are what contributed to the attack of Jan. 6. And it is a relief that the indictment includes Mr. Trump’s role and responsibility in that violence. Many Americans would not understand the Justice Department focusing only on bureaucratic and procedural efforts to affect the congressional certification.

As Senator Mitch McConnell said at the close of Mr. Trump’s second impeachment trial, “There is no question — none — that President Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day.””

As they say, go read the whole thing.

“I want to own you, officially,” the former mayor is quoted in a March 3, 2019 conversation with Dunphy. “Legally, with a document.”
That bit might be only part of the article I can post here. And oddly may provide a narrative link to DeSantis’ idiotic defense of slavery as an apprenticeship program. But can we agree that the always eye-rolling America’s Mayor thing is dead?

Pittsburgh synagogue gunman will be sentenced to death for the nation’s deadliest antisemitic attack

“The gunman who stormed a synagogue in the heart of Pittsburgh’s Jewish community and killed 11 worshippers will be sentenced to death for perpetrating the deadliest antisemitic attack in U.S. history, a jury decided Wednesday.

Robert Bowers spewed hatred of Jews and espoused white supremacist beliefs online before methodically planning and carrying out the 2018 massacre at the Tree of Life synagogue, where members of three congregations had gathered for Sabbath worship and study. Bowers, a truck driver from suburban Baldwin, also wounded two worshippers and five responding police officers.”

Pence on Trump’s indictment: ‘Anyone who puts himself over the Constitution should never be President’

“In his statement, Pence came out hard against Trump, saying that although the former president is “entitled to the presumption of innocence,” our country “ is more important than one man.””

I mean, it took this guy more than 3 years to say anything this definitive re: 1/6 and Trump’s effort to stage a coup. According to Jack Smith’s indictment, they were able to rely on contemporaneous notes that Pence made. So Pence took notes on these meetings, but warned nobody that this was coming. Still a coward, and still unfit for office.

What’s on your mind today?

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