It just keeps getting easier and easier to catch Donald Trump and his Merry Band of Incompetents in lies or other nefarious activities that reflect their dishonor and deceit. And the blunder by Trump’s attorney, Rudy Giuliani, on Thursday is just the latest example of this phenomenon.
If Saturday Night Live wanted to create a satirical character whose practice of the law incriminated his client more often than not, they would only need to transcribe Giuliani’s comments verbatim. In this episode, Giuliani attempted to clean up a Trump tweet that appeared to most people as an obvious effort to obstruct justice with regard to the special counsel probe of Robert Mueller. Trump tweeted:
..This is a terrible situation and Attorney General Jeff Sessions should stop this Rigged Witch Hunt right now, before it continues to stain our country any further. Bob Mueller is totally conflicted, and his 17 Angry Democrats that are doing his dirty work are a disgrace to USA!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 1, 2018
That sure looks like Trump is directing his Attorney General to halt the investigation into Trump’s collusion with Russia. But Giuliani has an alternative interpretation of the tweet that makes it completely innocent. He told CNN’s Dana Bash that Trump was just “expressing his opinion on his favored medium for asserting his First Amendment right of free speech. He said ‘should’ not ‘must.'”
So the use of the word “should” absolves Trump of any culpability for comments that seem to be giving Sessions a direct order. But if your boss told you that you should stop working on a “terrible” project “right now,” would you think he was just expressing an opinion and ignore him? Not if you wanted to keep your job, you wouldn’t. But if Giuliani is so fixated on the words “should” and “must,” then he might want to refer back to this tweet by Trump in April:
Just Out: House Intelligence Committee Report released. “No evidence” that the Trump Campaign “colluded, coordinated or conspired with Russia.” Clinton Campaign paid for Opposition Research obtained from Russia- Wow! A total Witch Hunt! MUST END NOW!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 27, 2018
That satisfies the Giuliani standard of saying “must” in order for the directive to be considered obstruction of justice. So we all owe Rudy our thanks for making the legal argument so clear and applicable to his client. Now we just need to wait and see how he and/or Trump try to spin this into something that means the opposite of what it obviously means.
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.