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Thread: Dismantling Justin Amash’s Obstruction Argument

  1. #1

    Exclamation Dismantling Justin Amash’s Obstruction Argument

    Justin Amash has become an albatross upon the liberty movement in the last week. Through his calls to impeach President Trump, Amash has burned much of the goodwill the movement had built up through the actions of Rand Paul and Thomas Massie during the Trump era. Worst of all, he did so base upon logic which is fundamentally anti libertarian.
    Amash has posted several tweet threads supporting a narrative on obstruction not dissimilar from those pushed by networks such as CNN. In his latest thread, among many other things, Amash lays out an argument on obstruction which will strike any libertarian who has read the Mueller report as absurd.
    For the vast majority of Americans who have not read the entire report, I have broken down below exactly why Amash is wrong below. I list Amash’s six reasons in quotes, with my response directly below each one.


    “1. Trump asked the FBI director to stop investigating Michael Flynn, who had been his campaign adviser and national security adviser, and who had already committed a crime by lying to the FBI.”

    First of all, there’s no evidence that this conversation took place beyond the word of James Comey. We have his claim, and a “memo” that he illegally leaked to the press. The same James Comey who submitted a FISA warrant application which claimed Christopher Steele’s dossier was verified, when he months later went on to call it unverified when testifying to Congress. Comey’s word vs Trump’s is what you would base an obstruction charge on if this were your argument. That doesn’t pass the laugh test.

    Even if you can get past both of those things, they did not let the Flynn thing go and the POTUS never pushed them to do so afterwards, therefore no actions resulted from these alleged conversations between the POTUS and the FBI Director. No obstructive act can happen if no act happened.

    “2. After AG Sessions recused himself from the Russian investigation on the advice of DoJ ethics lawyers, Trump directly asked Sessions to reverse his recusal so that he could retain control over the investigation and help the president.”

    Asking the Attorney General to remain in charge of an investigation does not end the investigation, it does not impede the investigation, it does not deprive the investigation of any item required to complete it, and therefore it does not obstruct. Furthermore, the reasoning Amash spells out for why Trump did this is pure speculation. There are competing speculations which are just as valid as his, if not moreso. Some were even in the Mueller report.
    Even if asking someone not to recuse themselves would rise to the level of obstruction in normal circumstances (it wouldn’t), the POTUS has Article II power over his inferior officers. Even if you could get past the fact that there’s no obstructive act, no attempt to end the investigation, no misconduct of any kind, the argument fails because of that. Even if you can get past both of those things, Sessions remained recused, therefore no actions resulted from these conversations between the POTUS and the Attorney General. No obstructive act can happen if no act happened. Next argument.

    “3. Trump directed the White House counsel, Don McGahn, to have Special Counsel Mueller removed on the basis of pretextual conflicts of interest that Trump’s advisers had already told him were “ridiculous” and could not justify removing the special counsel.”


    Like keeping on Sessions as the AG, removing Mueller as head of the special counsel does not end the special counsel. It does not end the investigation, it does not impede the investigation, it does not deprive the investigation of any item required to complete it, and therefore it does not obstruct.
    This makes the reasoning for having done this irrelevant, but the implication that the reasoning matters goes to the notion of corrupt intent, so let’s briefly address that. Donald Trump had what he described as a “nasty business transaction” involving Robert Mueller. Mueller applied to be the FBI director and didn’t get the job. Mueller was a close personal friend of James Comey. For all of these reasons, Trump may very well have thought the conflicts were legitimate and disagreed with McGahn. Therefore, proving intent is also virtually impossible.
    Furthermore, and most importantly, McGahn did not follow through on this alleged request. Not a single action was taken as the result of these discussions between the POTUS and his White House Counsel. Since no act was taken at all, there was no obstructive act. Next argument.

    “4. When that event was publicly reported, Trump asked that McGahn make a public statement and create a false internal record stating that Trump had not asked him to fire the special counsel, and suggested that McGahn would be fired if he did not comply.”

    Let’s say that this was true, and Donald Trump intentionally told Don McGahn to lie to the public about Trump asking him to fire Mueller. Lying to the media and the American people is not lying to the special counsel, and therefore cannot possibly be considered obstruction of justice. Since the special counsel never asked him this question directly, it could not have possibly been necessary to their investigation, so the idea that this statement to the press deprived them of something necessary to their investigation is refuted by the record.

    Furthermore, Mueller actually laid out a fairly strong argument that Trump genuinely disputed McGahn’s characterization that he told McGahn to fire Mueller. Finally, McGahn refused the alleged request and never called Rod Rosenstein to make this case. So, even if you threw the entire above paragraph away, no action resulted from these discussions between the POTUS and his White House Counsel. That fact alone makes any obstruction argument absurd.

    “5. Trump asked Corey Lewandowski, his former campaign manager, to tell AG Sessions to limit the special counsel’s investigation only to future election interference. Trump said Lewandowski should tell Sessions he was fired if he would not meet with him.”

    Similarly to the above, Trump disputes this characterization, and Lewandowski says he refused the alleged order and never told Sessions to do this. The only evidence you have that it took place is the word of a former campaign manager, and even if you could prove it happened there wasn’t a single action which resulted from these alleged discussions. So, you have the problem of it being one mans word against another, and then the problem of no action having resulted from the alleged discussion. That makes the case that an obstructive act occurred untenable.

    “6. Trump used his pardon power to influence his associates, including Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen, not to fully cooperate with the investigation.”

    That is just plainly false. Let’s break down what Amash is claiming that Mueller laid out as evidence of Trump ‘using his pardon power’ in these cases:
    What Mueller claimed that Trump and Trump aides said to Cohen consisted of support lines such as “the POTUS wants to check in and see if you’re okay”, “hang in there”, “stay strong”, “the POTUS says he loves you and not to worry” and “You are loved, stay well tonight, you have friends in high places”. This was all in the aftermath of Cohen’s office being raided by the feds. None of these messages mention a pardon or hint at anything transactional. The notion that these messages amounted to dangling his pardon power over Cohen is absurd.
    The only thing Mueller says in relation to pardons is that Cohen claims he discussed one with the POTUS’s personal counsel, and that he understood the counsel’s responses to these questions that “(Cohen) would be fine” to mean that he would get a pardon as long as he stayed on message. A convicted perjurer saying that he understood this as an implication. Not exactly ironclad credibility or a bombshell allegation.
    The evidence in regards to Manafort is even flimsier. It consists of two pieces of evidence: Trump saying Manafort was treated unfairly in public and Guiliani suggesting in TV interviews that nonspecific people may be pardoned, but only once the investigation ends.
    In the case of both, Mueller brought up the instances of Trump saying that neither Cohen nor Manafort would “flip”. At every point where Trump says this he makes clear that he believes this is a witch hunt investigation, and that “flipping” means they will tell the investigators a falsehood at his expense in exchange for a reduced sentence. These lines are no evidence of obstruction, they are evidence that Trump knew he was dealing with dirty cops.
    To review, not only did Amash not manage to point out an obstructive act in his analysis of the Mueller report, his impotent attempt exposes the inherent weakness of the argument for obstruction. 5 of the 6 things he brings up involve conversations (some of which are disputed by Trump himself) between Trump and various campaign and White House officials, where in each case the White House or campaign official in question did not act upon what was supposedly discussed.
    In each of these cases, since there was no act taken at all, there can be no obstructive act.
    In the final case, the notion of dangling pardons for Cohen and Manafort, Amash relies on generic well wishing and Guiliani stating the President’s pardon powers as a basis for the notion that there was an implication that President Trump would pardon these people. No quid pro quo was established, no offer was ever made, and no pardon was ever granted.
    Make no mistake, ladies and gentlemen, you should be very angry at Justin Amash for the position his anti liberty stance has put every Liberty Conservative in with the GOP base. His pro FBI crusade, if it is allowed to be seen as the libertarian position, may have severe negative repercussions upon our movement which last for a very long time.


    https://libertyconservativenews.com/...tion-argument/
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment



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  3. #2
    The left knows Trump was willing to do everything they accuse him of but the problem is he didn't.

  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Justin Amash has become an albatross upon the liberty movement in the last week. Through his calls to impeach President Trump, Amash has burned much of the goodwill the movement had built up through the actions of Rand Paul and Thomas Massie during the Trump era. Worst of all, he did so base upon logic which is fundamentally anti libertarian.
    Amash has posted several tweet threads supporting a narrative on obstruction not dissimilar from those pushed by networks such as CNN. In his latest thread, among many other things, Amash lays out an argument on obstruction which will strike any libertarian who has read the Mueller report as absurd.
    For the vast majority of Americans who have not read the entire report, I have broken down below exactly why Amash is wrong below. I list Amash’s six reasons in quotes, with my response directly below each one.


    “1. Trump asked the FBI director to stop investigating Michael Flynn, who had been his campaign adviser and national security adviser, and who had already committed a crime by lying to the FBI.”

    First of all, there’s no evidence that this conversation took place beyond the word of James Comey. We have his claim, and a “memo” that he illegally leaked to the press. The same James Comey who submitted a FISA warrant application which claimed Christopher Steele’s dossier was verified, when he months later went on to call it unverified when testifying to Congress. Comey’s word vs Trump’s is what you would base an obstruction charge on if this were your argument. That doesn’t pass the laugh test.

    Even if you can get past both of those things, they did not let the Flynn thing go and the POTUS never pushed them to do so afterwards, therefore no actions resulted from these alleged conversations between the POTUS and the FBI Director. No obstructive act can happen if no act happened.

    “2. After AG Sessions recused himself from the Russian investigation on the advice of DoJ ethics lawyers, Trump directly asked Sessions to reverse his recusal so that he could retain control over the investigation and help the president.”

    Asking the Attorney General to remain in charge of an investigation does not end the investigation, it does not impede the investigation, it does not deprive the investigation of any item required to complete it, and therefore it does not obstruct. Furthermore, the reasoning Amash spells out for why Trump did this is pure speculation. There are competing speculations which are just as valid as his, if not moreso. Some were even in the Mueller report.
    Even if asking someone not to recuse themselves would rise to the level of obstruction in normal circumstances (it wouldn’t), the POTUS has Article II power over his inferior officers. Even if you could get past the fact that there’s no obstructive act, no attempt to end the investigation, no misconduct of any kind, the argument fails because of that. Even if you can get past both of those things, Sessions remained recused, therefore no actions resulted from these conversations between the POTUS and the Attorney General. No obstructive act can happen if no act happened. Next argument.

    “3. Trump directed the White House counsel, Don McGahn, to have Special Counsel Mueller removed on the basis of pretextual conflicts of interest that Trump’s advisers had already told him were “ridiculous” and could not justify removing the special counsel.”


    Like keeping on Sessions as the AG, removing Mueller as head of the special counsel does not end the special counsel. It does not end the investigation, it does not impede the investigation, it does not deprive the investigation of any item required to complete it, and therefore it does not obstruct.
    This makes the reasoning for having done this irrelevant, but the implication that the reasoning matters goes to the notion of corrupt intent, so let’s briefly address that. Donald Trump had what he described as a “nasty business transaction” involving Robert Mueller. Mueller applied to be the FBI director and didn’t get the job. Mueller was a close personal friend of James Comey. For all of these reasons, Trump may very well have thought the conflicts were legitimate and disagreed with McGahn. Therefore, proving intent is also virtually impossible.
    Furthermore, and most importantly, McGahn did not follow through on this alleged request. Not a single action was taken as the result of these discussions between the POTUS and his White House Counsel. Since no act was taken at all, there was no obstructive act. Next argument.

    “4. When that event was publicly reported, Trump asked that McGahn make a public statement and create a false internal record stating that Trump had not asked him to fire the special counsel, and suggested that McGahn would be fired if he did not comply.”

    Let’s say that this was true, and Donald Trump intentionally told Don McGahn to lie to the public about Trump asking him to fire Mueller. Lying to the media and the American people is not lying to the special counsel, and therefore cannot possibly be considered obstruction of justice. Since the special counsel never asked him this question directly, it could not have possibly been necessary to their investigation, so the idea that this statement to the press deprived them of something necessary to their investigation is refuted by the record.

    Furthermore, Mueller actually laid out a fairly strong argument that Trump genuinely disputed McGahn’s characterization that he told McGahn to fire Mueller. Finally, McGahn refused the alleged request and never called Rod Rosenstein to make this case. So, even if you threw the entire above paragraph away, no action resulted from these discussions between the POTUS and his White House Counsel. That fact alone makes any obstruction argument absurd.

    “5. Trump asked Corey Lewandowski, his former campaign manager, to tell AG Sessions to limit the special counsel’s investigation only to future election interference. Trump said Lewandowski should tell Sessions he was fired if he would not meet with him.”

    Similarly to the above, Trump disputes this characterization, and Lewandowski says he refused the alleged order and never told Sessions to do this. The only evidence you have that it took place is the word of a former campaign manager, and even if you could prove it happened there wasn’t a single action which resulted from these alleged discussions. So, you have the problem of it being one mans word against another, and then the problem of no action having resulted from the alleged discussion. That makes the case that an obstructive act occurred untenable.

    “6. Trump used his pardon power to influence his associates, including Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen, not to fully cooperate with the investigation.”

    That is just plainly false. Let’s break down what Amash is claiming that Mueller laid out as evidence of Trump ‘using his pardon power’ in these cases:
    What Mueller claimed that Trump and Trump aides said to Cohen consisted of support lines such as “the POTUS wants to check in and see if you’re okay”, “hang in there”, “stay strong”, “the POTUS says he loves you and not to worry” and “You are loved, stay well tonight, you have friends in high places”. This was all in the aftermath of Cohen’s office being raided by the feds. None of these messages mention a pardon or hint at anything transactional. The notion that these messages amounted to dangling his pardon power over Cohen is absurd.
    The only thing Mueller says in relation to pardons is that Cohen claims he discussed one with the POTUS’s personal counsel, and that he understood the counsel’s responses to these questions that “(Cohen) would be fine” to mean that he would get a pardon as long as he stayed on message. A convicted perjurer saying that he understood this as an implication. Not exactly ironclad credibility or a bombshell allegation.
    The evidence in regards to Manafort is even flimsier. It consists of two pieces of evidence: Trump saying Manafort was treated unfairly in public and Guiliani suggesting in TV interviews that nonspecific people may be pardoned, but only once the investigation ends.
    In the case of both, Mueller brought up the instances of Trump saying that neither Cohen nor Manafort would “flip”. At every point where Trump says this he makes clear that he believes this is a witch hunt investigation, and that “flipping” means they will tell the investigators a falsehood at his expense in exchange for a reduced sentence. These lines are no evidence of obstruction, they are evidence that Trump knew he was dealing with dirty cops.
    To review, not only did Amash not manage to point out an obstructive act in his analysis of the Mueller report, his impotent attempt exposes the inherent weakness of the argument for obstruction. 5 of the 6 things he brings up involve conversations (some of which are disputed by Trump himself) between Trump and various campaign and White House officials, where in each case the White House or campaign official in question did not act upon what was supposedly discussed.
    In each of these cases, since there was no act taken at all, there can be no obstructive act.
    In the final case, the notion of dangling pardons for Cohen and Manafort, Amash relies on generic well wishing and Guiliani stating the President’s pardon powers as a basis for the notion that there was an implication that President Trump would pardon these people. No quid pro quo was established, no offer was ever made, and no pardon was ever granted.
    Make no mistake, ladies and gentlemen, you should be very angry at Justin Amash for the position his anti liberty stance has put every Liberty Conservative in with the GOP base. His pro FBI crusade, if it is allowed to be seen as the libertarian position, may have severe negative repercussions upon our movement which last for a very long time.


    https://libertyconservativenews.com/...tion-argument/
    Time for me to take another RPF vacation. $#@! off, you asshoat trolling GOP piece of $#@!.
    *******

    I didn't start out thinking that anti-vax people were fools or impervious to reason, it's from my experience here that I now think that.
    - AmyPi 2014 (RIP)

    Anti-vaxxers, responsible for a 30 percent uptick in totally preventable diseases in the world, have blood on their hands. They shouldn't be considered civilized members of society. If they refuse to listen to a century of scientific studies confirming time and time again that vaccination is an unquestionable good for humanity, then it's time for us to start treating anti-vaxxers as what they are: dangerous and worthy of shame and condemnation. If we can't convince anti-vaxxers to change their minds, we must attach enough social stigma to the delusion that agnostics cease to join them.

  5. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by angelatc View Post
    Time for me to take another RPF vacation. $#@! off, you asshoat trolling GOP piece of $#@!.
    I'll be missing you baby. Please come back soon.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MeTAGlBa1sA

  6. #5

    Lightbulb Amash is right

    Justin Amash Is Right About Impeachable Conduct

    The fact that Trump's frequently clumsy efforts to impede federal investigations were mostly unsuccessful (mainly because of resistance by his underlings) does not get him off the hook, since attempted obstruction is also a crime. Nor does it matter that Mueller ultimately found no evidence that anyone in the Trump campaign illegally conspired with Russian agents. Trump himself did not know the answer to that question in advance, and in any case he may have been motivated by a desire to prevent revelations that could prove embarrassing and politically damaging.

    More to the point, as Amash noted, the "high crimes and misdemeanors" that justify impeachment extend beyond provable statutory violations to abuses of power that betray the public trust. Trump's own lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, last year conceded that it "would just be unthinkable" for Trump to pardon himself, which "would lead to probably an immediate impeachment," even though the Constitution imposes no limits on the pardon power.

    https://reason.com/2019/05/22/justin...hable-conduct/
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    You only show up to attack Trump when he is wrong
    DACA S**thole Dreamers - Make America Great Again?

  7. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by angelatc View Post
    Time for me to take another RPF vacation. $#@! off, you asshoat trolling GOP piece of $#@!.
    Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

    Try refuting the argument if you can.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  8. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by RonZeplin View Post
    Justin Amash Is Right About Impeachable Conduct

    The fact that Trump's frequently clumsy efforts to impede federal investigations were mostly unsuccessful (mainly because of resistance by his underlings) does not get him off the hook, since attempted obstruction is also a crime. Nor does it matter that Mueller ultimately found no evidence that anyone in the Trump campaign illegally conspired with Russian agents. Trump himself did not know the answer to that question in advance, and in any case he may have been motivated by a desire to prevent revelations that could prove embarrassing and politically damaging.

    More to the point, as Amash noted, the "high crimes and misdemeanors" that justify impeachment extend beyond provable statutory violations to abuses of power that betray the public trust. Trump's own lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, last year conceded that it "would just be unthinkable" for Trump to pardon himself, which "would lead to probably an immediate impeachment," even though the Constitution imposes no limits on the pardon power.

    https://reason.com/2019/05/22/justin...hable-conduct/
    LOL

    You can't refute the argument so you link to propaganda from [T]Reason?
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  9. #8
    Let's make it clear. Amash has no proof of anything he could potentially have a standing in, short of Mueller's instructions. Does he also support getting Trump's taxes from the IRS?



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  11. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by angelatc View Post
    $#@! off, you asshoat trolling GOP piece of $#@!.
    Great comment, I'd +rep you if I could.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    You only show up to attack Trump when he is wrong
    DACA S**thole Dreamers - Make America Great Again?

  12. #10
    Let's see if ANY of the TDS crowd even tries to debate the facts in the article.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  13. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Let's see if ANY of the TDS crowd even tries to debate the facts in the article.
    How can you not see it?!

  14. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by RonZeplin View Post
    Great comment, I'd +rep you if I could.
    You can't debate the facts so you resort to insults.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  15. #13
    Here are the facts separated from any opinions you might object to:

    “1. Trump asked the FBI director to stop investigating Michael Flynn, who had been his campaign adviser and national security adviser, and who had already committed a crime by lying to the FBI.”

    First of all, there’s no evidence that this conversation took place beyond the word of James Comey. We have his claim, and a “memo” that he illegally leaked to the press. The same James Comey who submitted a FISA warrant application which claimed Christopher Steele’s dossier was verified, when he months later went on to call it unverified when testifying to Congress. Comey’s word vs Trump’s is what you would base an obstruction charge on if this were your argument. That doesn’t pass the laugh test.

    Even if you can get past both of those things, they did not let the Flynn thing go and the POTUS never pushed them to do so afterwards, therefore no actions resulted from these alleged conversations between the POTUS and the FBI Director. No obstructive act can happen if no act happened.

    “2. After AG Sessions recused himself from the Russian investigation on the advice of DoJ ethics lawyers, Trump directly asked Sessions to reverse his recusal so that he could retain control over the investigation and help the president.”

    Asking the Attorney General to remain in charge of an investigation does not end the investigation, it does not impede the investigation, it does not deprive the investigation of any item required to complete it, and therefore it does not obstruct. Furthermore, the reasoning Amash spells out for why Trump did this is pure speculation. There are competing speculations which are just as valid as his, if not moreso. Some were even in the Mueller report.
    Even if asking someone not to recuse themselves would rise to the level of obstruction in normal circumstances (it wouldn’t), the POTUS has Article II power over his inferior officers. Even if you could get past the fact that there’s no obstructive act, no attempt to end the investigation, no misconduct of any kind, the argument fails because of that. Even if you can get past both of those things, Sessions remained recused, therefore no actions resulted from these conversations between the POTUS and the Attorney General. No obstructive act can happen if no act happened. Next argument.

    “3. Trump directed the White House counsel, Don McGahn, to have Special Counsel Mueller removed on the basis of pretextual conflicts of interest that Trump’s advisers had already told him were “ridiculous” and could not justify removing the special counsel.”


    Like keeping on Sessions as the AG, removing Mueller as head of the special counsel does not end the special counsel. It does not end the investigation, it does not impede the investigation, it does not deprive the investigation of any item required to complete it, and therefore it does not obstruct.
    This makes the reasoning for having done this irrelevant, but the implication that the reasoning matters goes to the notion of corrupt intent, so let’s briefly address that. Donald Trump had what he described as a “nasty business transaction” involving Robert Mueller. Mueller applied to be the FBI director and didn’t get the job. Mueller was a close personal friend of James Comey. For all of these reasons, Trump may very well have thought the conflicts were legitimate and disagreed with McGahn. Therefore, proving intent is also virtually impossible.
    Furthermore, and most importantly, McGahn did not follow through on this alleged request. Not a single action was taken as the result of these discussions between the POTUS and his White House Counsel. Since no act was taken at all, there was no obstructive act. Next argument.

    “4. When that event was publicly reported, Trump asked that McGahn make a public statement and create a false internal record stating that Trump had not asked him to fire the special counsel, and suggested that McGahn would be fired if he did not comply.”

    Let’s say that this was true, and Donald Trump intentionally told Don McGahn to lie to the public about Trump asking him to fire Mueller. Lying to the media and the American people is not lying to the special counsel, and therefore cannot possibly be considered obstruction of justice. Since the special counsel never asked him this question directly, it could not have possibly been necessary to their investigation, so the idea that this statement to the press deprived them of something necessary to their investigation is refuted by the record.

    Furthermore, Mueller actually laid out a fairly strong argument that Trump genuinely disputed McGahn’s characterization that he told McGahn to fire Mueller. Finally, McGahn refused the alleged request and never called Rod Rosenstein to make this case. So, even if you threw the entire above paragraph away, no action resulted from these discussions between the POTUS and his White House Counsel. That fact alone makes any obstruction argument absurd.

    “5. Trump asked Corey Lewandowski, his former campaign manager, to tell AG Sessions to limit the special counsel’s investigation only to future election interference. Trump said Lewandowski should tell Sessions he was fired if he would not meet with him.”

    Similarly to the above, Trump disputes this characterization, and Lewandowski says he refused the alleged order and never told Sessions to do this. The only evidence you have that it took place is the word of a former campaign manager, and even if you could prove it happened there wasn’t a single action which resulted from these alleged discussions. So, you have the problem of it being one mans word against another, and then the problem of no action having resulted from the alleged discussion. That makes the case that an obstructive act occurred untenable.

    “6. Trump used his pardon power to influence his associates, including Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen, not to fully cooperate with the investigation.”

    That is just plainly false. Let’s break down what Amash is claiming that Mueller laid out as evidence of Trump ‘using his pardon power’ in these cases:
    What Mueller claimed that Trump and Trump aides said to Cohen consisted of support lines such as “the POTUS wants to check in and see if you’re okay”, “hang in there”, “stay strong”, “the POTUS says he loves you and not to worry” and “You are loved, stay well tonight, you have friends in high places”. This was all in the aftermath of Cohen’s office being raided by the feds. None of these messages mention a pardon or hint at anything transactional. The notion that these messages amounted to dangling his pardon power over Cohen is absurd.
    The only thing Mueller says in relation to pardons is that Cohen claims he discussed one with the POTUS’s personal counsel, and that he understood the counsel’s responses to these questions that “(Cohen) would be fine” to mean that he would get a pardon as long as he stayed on message. A convicted perjurer saying that he understood this as an implication. Not exactly ironclad credibility or a bombshell allegation.
    The evidence in regards to Manafort is even flimsier. It consists of two pieces of evidence: Trump saying Manafort was treated unfairly in public and Guiliani suggesting in TV interviews that nonspecific people may be pardoned, but only once the investigation ends.
    In the case of both, Mueller brought up the instances of Trump saying that neither Cohen nor Manafort would “flip”. At every point where Trump says this he makes clear that he believes this is a witch hunt investigation, and that “flipping” means they will tell the investigators a falsehood at his expense in exchange for a reduced sentence. These lines are no evidence of obstruction, they are evidence that Trump knew he was dealing with dirty cops.
    To review, not only did Amash not manage to point out an obstructive act in his analysis of the Mueller report, his impotent attempt exposes the inherent weakness of the argument for obstruction. 5 of the 6 things he brings up involve conversations (some of which are disputed by Trump himself) between Trump and various campaign and White House officials, where in each case the White House or campaign official in question did not act upon what was supposedly discussed.
    In each of these cases, since there was no act taken at all, there can be no obstructive act.
    In the final case, the notion of dangling pardons for Cohen and Manafort, Amash relies on generic well wishing and Guiliani stating the President’s pardon powers as a basis for the notion that there was an implication that President Trump would pardon these people. No quid pro quo was established, no offer was ever made, and no pardon was ever granted.


    Try debating them, I'm waiting........................................... ..............................
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  16. #14

  17. #15

  18. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by angelatc View Post
    Time for me to take another RPF vacation. $#@! off, you asshoat trolling GOP piece of $#@!.
    LOL!!

    Not an argument!!

    That was an extremely well written piece, proved Justin is completely wrong on this. I love his voting record, I still support him, but he is VERY WRONG on this issue from a completely logical standpoint and you need to get your emotions in check on this one.
    "He's talkin' to his gut like it's a person!!" -me
    "dumpster diving isn't professional." - angelatc


    "Each of us must choose which course of action we should take: education, conventional political action, or even peaceful civil disobedience to bring about necessary changes. But let it not be said that we did nothing." - Ron Paul

    "Paul said "the wave of the future" is a coalition of anti-authoritarian progressive Democrats and libertarian Republicans in Congress opposed to domestic surveillance, opposed to starting new wars and in favor of ending the so-called War on Drugs."



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  20. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by RonZeplin View Post
    Justin Amash Is Right About Impeachable Conduct

    The fact that Trump's frequently clumsy efforts to impede federal investigations were mostly unsuccessful (mainly because of resistance by his underlings) does not get him off the hook, since attempted obstruction is also a crime. Nor does it matter that Mueller ultimately found no evidence that anyone in the Trump campaign illegally conspired with Russian agents. Trump himself did not know the answer to that question in advance, and in any case he may have been motivated by a desire to prevent revelations that could prove embarrassing and politically damaging.

    More to the point, as Amash noted, the "high crimes and misdemeanors" that justify impeachment extend beyond provable statutory violations to abuses of power that betray the public trust. Trump's own lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, last year conceded that it "would just be unthinkable" for Trump to pardon himself, which "would lead to probably an immediate impeachment," even though the Constitution imposes no limits on the pardon power.

    https://reason.com/2019/05/22/justin...hable-conduct/
    You can't have "intent to obstruct justice" if Trump believes it was a witch hunt, because "justice" would mean he is innocent. The intent to obstruct justice would be if he knew he was guilty and he was trying to hide evidence or obstruct investigation into that evidence. There is no proof it wasn't a witch hunt, per the conclusions of the Mueller report which found no evidence of collusion or conspiracy with Russia, and you can't read Trump's mind and know he thought he was guilty, so that article is total BS. In fact, Trump knew it was a witch hunt, he always said that, and so did Ron Paul. But hey, as you know, Ron Paul and "Reason" often disagree.

    Read the article in the OP and try to refute that.
    Last edited by dannno; 06-01-2019 at 12:38 AM.
    "He's talkin' to his gut like it's a person!!" -me
    "dumpster diving isn't professional." - angelatc


    "Each of us must choose which course of action we should take: education, conventional political action, or even peaceful civil disobedience to bring about necessary changes. But let it not be said that we did nothing." - Ron Paul

    "Paul said "the wave of the future" is a coalition of anti-authoritarian progressive Democrats and libertarian Republicans in Congress opposed to domestic surveillance, opposed to starting new wars and in favor of ending the so-called War on Drugs."

  21. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by RonZeplin View Post
    Justin Amash Is Right About Impeachable Conduct

    The fact that Trump's frequently clumsy efforts to impede federal investigations were mostly unsuccessful (mainly because of resistance by his underlings) does not get him off the hook, since attempted obstruction is also a crime. Nor does it matter that Mueller ultimately found no evidence that anyone in the Trump campaign illegally conspired with Russian agents. Trump himself did not know the answer to that question in advance, and in any case he may have been motivated by a desire to prevent revelations that could prove embarrassing and politically damaging.

    More to the point, as Amash noted, the "high crimes and misdemeanors" that justify impeachment extend beyond provable statutory violations to abuses of power that betray the public trust. Trump's own lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, last year conceded that it "would just be unthinkable" for Trump to pardon himself, which "would lead to probably an immediate impeachment," even though the Constitution imposes no limits on the pardon power.

    https://reason.com/2019/05/22/justin...hable-conduct/

    Trump is guilty of thought crimes.

  22. #19

  23. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by angelatc View Post
    Time for me to take another RPF vacation. $#@! off, you asshoat trolling GOP piece of $#@!.
    Angela, Rand doesn't agree with what Justin did, either.
    ================
    Open Borders: A Libertarian Reappraisal or why only dumbasses and cultural marxists are for it.

    Cultural Marxism: The Corruption of America

    The Property Basis of Rights

  24. #21
    Is there any actual argument against what the article claims? I haven't seen any in this thread, that's for sure.
    NeoReactionary. American High Tory.

    The counter-revolution will not be televised.

  25. #22

    Arrow DOJ conspiracy to obstruct justice - GHW Bushbot retread

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Let's see if ANY of the TDS crowd even tries to debate the facts in the article.
    The facts are unknown due to obstruction of justice.

    Big cover up op, like 9/11 & JFK. Joe & Jane Sixpack know that LBJ and GHW Bush killed JFK, but the proof has been buried. We'll never know if obstruction of justice was necessary, but it's a virtual certainty that it happened.



    Recycled GHW Bushbot fixer.

    "If the President does it it's not illegal"

    Honest Jeff Sessions was fired for not going along with the coverup.
    Last edited by RonZeplin; 06-01-2019 at 05:46 AM. Reason: Honest Jeff
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    You only show up to attack Trump when he is wrong
    DACA S**thole Dreamers - Make America Great Again?

  26. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by RonZeplin View Post
    The facts are unknown due to obstruction of justice.

    Big cover up op, like 9/11 & JFK. Joe & Jane Sixpack know that LBJ and GHW Bush killed JFK, but the proof has been buried. We'll never know if obstruction of justice was necessary, but it's a virtual certainty that it happened.
    Based on what?
    ================
    Open Borders: A Libertarian Reappraisal or why only dumbasses and cultural marxists are for it.

    Cultural Marxism: The Corruption of America

    The Property Basis of Rights

  27. #24
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Quiz: Test Your "Income" Tax IQ!

    Short Income Tax Video

    The Income Tax Is An Excise, And Excise Taxes Are Privilege Taxes

    The Federalist Papers, No. 15:

    Except as to the rule of appointment, the United States have an indefinite discretion to make requisitions for men and money; but they have no authority to raise either by regulations extending to the individual citizens of America.



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  29. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by RonZeplin View Post
    The facts are unknown due to obstruction of justice.

    Big cover up op, like 9/11 & JFK. Joe & Jane Sixpack know that LBJ and GHW Bush killed JFK, but the proof has been buried. We'll never know if obstruction of justice was necessary, but it's a virtual certainty that it happened.



    Recycled GHW Bushbot fixer.

    "If the President does it it's not illegal"
    You mean the FBI director during 9/11 Mueller and deputy AG Comey during 9/11 clung around to be part of the deep state for all of these years, in order to perpetuate a cover up against Trump because he is more part of the deep state than they are and they don't really hate him they are pretending?

  30. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Danke View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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    BEing investigated for a crime is not the same thing as being hanged for it. One can make a return from an investigation but not from a hanging. I don't think there is any evidence that Trump helped himself from obstructing justice, if anything, the reckless man was worse off from doing obstruction. How could he be colluding with the Russians when he was to TV calling for Russia to hack Clinton's email while the Russian govt were busy denying that they ever hacked the DNC. The Russians would be crazy working with a loud mouth buffon such as Trump.
    You can maintain power over people, as long as you give them something. Rob a man of everything, and that man will no longer be in your power. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

    Quote Originally Posted by LibertyEagle View Post
    Trust principles; not people.
    My Che avatar is my unique way of giving a big middle finger to the, the neocons, the globalists, imperialists and most importantly to the left and right political establishment who hate his guts till this day. My admiration for him ends where his anti imperialist pro communism ideology starts.

  31. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by juleswin View Post
    BEing investigated for a crime is not the same thing as being hanged for it. One can make a return from an investigation but not from a hanging. I don't think there is any evidence that Trump helped himself from obstructing justice, if anything, the reckless man was worse off from doing obstruction. How could he be colluding with the Russians when he was to TV calling for Russia to hack Clinton's email while the Russian govt were busy denying that they ever hacked the DNC. The Russians would be crazy working with a loud mouth buffon such as Trump.
    You are kidding right? The democrats won the house with this fake investigation and now are calling to impeach him with this investigation. This isn't a fair trial this isn't innocent until proven guilty. Clinton started this rumor during 2016 election and said he was guilty before they even investigated based on the Steele Dossier.

  32. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by nikcers View Post
    You are kidding right? The democrats won the house with this fake investigation and now are calling to impeach him with this investigation. This isn't a fair trial this isn't innocent until proven guilty. Clinton started this rumor during 2016 election and said he was guilty before they even investigated based on the Steele Dossier.
    How did him obstructing justice help his case i.e prevent the hanging?
    You can maintain power over people, as long as you give them something. Rob a man of everything, and that man will no longer be in your power. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

    Quote Originally Posted by LibertyEagle View Post
    Trust principles; not people.
    My Che avatar is my unique way of giving a big middle finger to the, the neocons, the globalists, imperialists and most importantly to the left and right political establishment who hate his guts till this day. My admiration for him ends where his anti imperialist pro communism ideology starts.

  33. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by juleswin View Post
    How did him obstructing justice help his case i.e prevent the hanging?
    How do you obstruct justice when our justice system is so $#@!ing broken we don't have any?

  34. #30
    Our Justice is locking up people for telling the truth so they can't $#@!ing speak to their lawyer because they are sick and dying. I will obstruct that until I am blue in the face if that's what you are calling justice.

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