Former President Donald Trump Is Not Above the Law

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Courtesy of Brett Davis (Flickr CC0)

There is a reason every federal employee, including the president, takes an oath of office which includes a promise to “preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” No one is above the Law of the Land, nor are they above laws deemed to be in line with the Constitution.

GOP politicians and Fox News, along with other right-wing propaganda machines, would like everyone to believe that “executive privilege” includes protection from prosecution for any crimes committed while in office. This is not true. Refusing to indict a sitting president is an archaic policy established by the Department of Justice, not a law or rule.

Trump
Courtesy of Don Irvine (Flickr CC0)

Currently, Donald Trump is desperate to hide the truth about the failed Jan. 6th coup. He ordered his cronies to ignore congressional subpoenas and refuse to testify before the select committee created in the House of Representatives.

Trump’s greatest fear has always been the truth. Before the select committee was assembled, a plethora of circumstantial evidence pointed to collusion between leaders of white supremacist groups, several members of Congress, and Trump, himself.

It was not spontaneous, and definitely not a protest, but a riot. The attack against Democracy was an effort by Trump’s people to halt the certification of the Electoral College vote and overturn the United States government.

Trump
Courtesy of USDA (Flickr CC0)

The insurrection was pure treason and nothing less. The world watched as thugs, criminals, and members of Trump’s fascist army, invaded the Capitol building, vandalizing the interior, and searching for Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Mike Pence with the intent of murdering them.

On Tuesday, Republican Rep. Liz Cheney broke with the Trump Party members on her side of the aisle and vehemently criticized these cowards for continuing to support Trump’s biggest lie of all, that the 2020 election was fraught with voter fraud. She also refused to accept Steve Bannon’s claim that he could ignore the subpoena to testify before the committee based on executive privilege.

Cheney said that she could see “no conceivably applicable privilege” which applied to Bannon and then challenged her party to do the right thing.

Let me add one further thought, principally for my Republican colleagues. All agree that America is the greatest nation on the face of God’s earth, truth, justice, and our constitution have made America great. Almost every one of my colleagues knows in your hearts that what happened on January 6 was profoundly wrong. You all know that there is no evidence of widespread election fraud sufficient to have changed the results of the election. You all know that the dominion voting machines were not corrupted by a foreign power. You know these claims are false, yet, former President Trump repeats them almost daily and he has now urged Republicans not to vote in 2022 and 2024. This is a prescription for national self-destruction. I ask my colleagues to please consider the fundamental questions of right and wrong here. The American people must know what happened. They must know the truth. All of us who are elected officials must do our duty to prevent the dismantling of the rule of law and to ensure that nothing like that dark day in January ever happens again.

There is nothing more to add.

Op-ed by James Turnage

Sources:

Daily KOS: Republican Liz Cheney destroys her Party as she votes to punish Steve Bannon’s refusal to testify; by Egberto Willies
Newsweek: Adam Schiff Says ‘People Like Steve Bannon’ Are Not ‘Above The Law’ Ahead of Contempt Vote; by Mary Ellen Cagnassola
Protect Democracy: Presidents Are Not Above the Law

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Brett Davis’ Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
First Inset Image Courtesy of Don Irvine’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Second Inset Image by Lance Cheung Courtesy of U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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