Ex-Federal Prosecutor Methodically Lays Out Alleged Trump Crimes from Mueller Report in House Hearing
U.S. Attorney from Alabama Joyce Vance sums up her opinion before Congress on indicting President Donald Trump on obstruction charges with this: “If you or I had committed this same conduct, we would have been charged by now.”
Appearing before the House Judiciary Committee on Monday, Vance stated the three elements a prosecutor would have to prove beyond reasonable doubt in order to charge obstruction of justice: an obstructive act, a nexus between that act and an official proceeding, and a corrupt intent.
Robert Mueller maintains followed Department of Justice policy that prohibits indicting a sitting president, but Vance believes had it been anyone other than the U.S. President, charges would most certainly be on the table.
“There is an attack by a foreign country on our country and election. On multiple occasions the president tried to thwart it, curtail it, or to end it completely either by removing Mueller outright or interfering with his ability to gather evidence,” said Vance.
Vance went on to lay out potential instances of obstruction she found in the report.
- The president ordered his White House counsel to fire the special counsel
- When news broke of this, he asked his White House counsel to lie and create a false record to corroborate
- When they refused to do this, he asked his former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, to get the Attorney General Jeff Sessions to unrecuse himself, and to restrict investigations into election interferences to future elections
- When his campaign manager refused, he tried to pressure the AG personally, telling him he would be a hero if he unrecused himself and he would be fired if he didn’t
- The president pressured Michael Flynn, Paul Manafort, and Michael Cohen not to cooperate with the investigation, offering to pardon them if they got in trouble for not cooperating
- The president’s personal counsel told Manafort he would be “taken care of” if he “sat tight and refused to cooperate”
She closed by saying though Congress may have a tough decision to make, but “you don’t have to be a legal expert to understand that in this country no one is above the law.”
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