Trump’s Efforts to Subvert Justice Reportedly Thwarted by People Just Ignoring Him

Rafi Schwartz just a moment. 0 comments
Donald Trump Matthew Whitaker Geoffrey S. Berman The New York Times Rudy Giuliani Jeff Sessions Robert Mueller Criminal Justice Trump Investigation Trump Russia Trump Collusion

The New York Times on Tuesday published a massive exposé on President Donald Trump’s ongoing efforts to subvert, deflect, and in some cases outright end the various investigations into his alleged criminal misdeeds. It’s a compelling if exhausting read, which goes to great lengths to show how Trump—increasingly frustrated by the prospect of actually facing serious consequences for his actions—has spent the past two years working to manipulate the levers of the criminal justice system to suit his own needs.

And yet there’s an undeniable subtext in the Times’ reporting: That Trump’s worst, most authoritarian inclinations are frequently stymied by the fact that those around him simply ignore his more outlandish directives.

Here’s a good example, in which the president asked then-acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker to reinstate U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Geoffrey S. Berman—perceived by Trump to be a friend—to oversee the SDNY’s investigation into the president’s businesses, after Berman had recused himself (emphasis mine throughout).

He made the call to Mr. Whitaker to see if he could put Mr. Berman in charge of the New York investigation. The inquiry is run by Robert Khuzami, a career prosecutor who took over after Mr. Berman, whom Mr. Trump appointed, recused himself because of a routine conflict of interest.

What exactly Mr. Whitaker did after the call is unclear, but there is no evidence that he took any direct steps to intervene in the Manhattan investigation. He did, however, tell some associates at the Justice Department that the prosecutors in New York required “adult supervision.”

Lip-service to “adult supervision” notwithstanding, it doesn’t seem like Whittaker did, well, anything! As the Times notes elsewhere in their report:

The president soon soured on Mr. Whitaker, as he often does with his aides, and complained about his inability to pull levers at the Justice Department that could make the president’s many legal problems go away.

Bummer, dude.

Here’s another example, this time dealing with Whitaker’s predecessor and frequent Trump punching bag, Jeff Sessions, who incurred the president’s wrath by recusing himself from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Privately, [Trump] tried to remove Mr. Sessions — he said he wanted an attorney general who would protect him — but didn’t fire him, in part because White House aides dodged the president’s orders to demand his resignation.

It gets better.

Mr. Trump even called his former campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, over the Fourth of July weekend to ask him to pressure Mr. Sessions to resign. Mr. Lewandowski was noncommittal and never acted on the request.

Nothing says “strong-willed leader” quite like calling up a dude who doesn’t work for you anymore, asking him to do you a solid (pressuring the top law enforcement official in the country to resign), and getting totally ignored.

Of course, as the Times laboriously points out, Trump has found plenty of other ways to subvert the natural course of justice in his favor, such as enlisting congressional loyalists and demented legal “experts” to simply discredit that which he couldn’t just wish away. Still, there’s something to be said for the fact that we’ve gotten to the point where Trump’s years-long efforts to warp the criminal justice system in his favor aren’t nearly as successful as he’d like—all because some of his closest confidants have been able to get away with acting like they can’t hear him.

HighResolutionMusic.com - Download Hi-Res Songs

1 Alan Walker

On My Way flac

Alan Walker. 2019. Writer: Alan Walker;Sabrina Carpenter;Farruko.
2 CHVRCHES

Here With Me flac

CHVRCHES. 2019. Writer: Steve Mac;Martin Doherty;Marshmello;Lauren Mayberry;Iain Cook.
3 5 Seconds Of Summer

Who Do You Love flac

5 Seconds Of Summer. 2019. Writer: Andrew Taggart;Talay Riley;Oak;Sean Douglas;Luke Hemmings;Calum Hood;Ashton Irwin;Michael Clifford;Trevorious;Zaire Koalo.
4 Bonn

No Sleep flac

Bonn. 2019. Writer: Albin Nedler;Bonn;Martin Garrix.
5 Katy Perry

365 flac

Katy Perry. 2019. Writer: Zedd;Katy Perry;Caroline Ailin;Corey Sanders;Daniel Davidsen;Cutfather;Peter Wallevik.
6 Avril Lavigne

Crush flac

Avril Lavigne. 2019. Writer: Johan Carlsson;Avril Lavigne;Zane Carney.
7 Alan Walker

Are You Lonely flac

Alan Walker. 2019.
8 Brooks

Better When You're Gone flac

Brooks. 2019. Writer: David Guetta;Emma Lov Block;Ido Zmishlany;Jackson Foote;Jeremy Dussolliet;Brooks.
9 Jonas Brothers

Sucker flac

Jonas Brothers. 2019. Writer: Kevin Jonas;Joe Jonas;Nick Jonas;Ryan Tedder;Louis Bell;Frank Dukes.
10 DEAMN

Happy flac

DEAMN. 2019.
11 Ariana Grande

Bloodline flac

Ariana Grande. 2019. Writer: ILYA;Max Martin;Savan Kotecha;Ariana Grande.
12 Ariana Grande

Imagine flac

Ariana Grande. 2019. Writer: JProof;Priscilla Renea;Happy Perez;Andrew "Pop" Wansel;Ariana Grande.
13 Ariana Grande

NASA flac

Ariana Grande. 2019. Writer: Ariana Grande;Scootie;Tayla Parx;TBHits;Victoria Monét.
14 IZ*ONE

Rise flac

IZ*ONE. 2019.
15 Dzeko

Halfway There flac

Dzeko. 2019.
16 Ellie Goulding

Flux flac

Ellie Goulding. 2019. Writer: Joe Kearns;Jim Eliot;Ellie Goulding.
17 Tiffany Young

Born Again flac

Tiffany Young. 2019. Writer: Fiction;Satica;Tiffany Young.
18 Ava Max

So Am I flac

Ava Max. 2019. Writer: Cirkut;Ava Max.
19 P!nk

Walk Me Home flac

P!nk. 2019. Writer: P!nk;Scott Harris;Nate Ruess.
20 Dido

Hurricanes flac

Dido. 2019. Writer: Dido;Rick Nowels;Rollo Armstrong.

Suggested posts

Other Rafi Schwartz's posts

Language