Opinion: 12 things to believe if ‘witch hunt’ accusation is true


One column cannot accommodate the list of things you must believe if you trust that Donald Trump is truly the victim of a baseless witch hunt. Consider this a mere stab.

1) Donald Trump Jr., Paul Manafort and Jared Kushner did nothing wrong by meeting with a Kremlin-connected Russian offering dirt on Hillary Clinton. The emails requesting the meeting specifically mentioned a “Russian government attorney” and added that the requested meeting concerned “very high level and sensitive information” … that “is part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump.” That doesn’t prove a willingness to collude.

2) Concern about Paul Manafort’s extensive links with Vladimir Putin’s former puppet in Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych, including at least $12.7 million in payments, is, to quote Manafort’s words, “silly and nonsensical.”

3) That Jared Kushner’s attempt, during the transition, to secure a back channel with the Russian government using their secure communications equipment in the Russian embassy was not alarming/inexplicable.

4) That Donald Trump’s stubborn refusal ever to breathe a critical word about Vladimir Putin, even as he has freely criticized U.S. allies, or acknowledge Russian meddling in our election, is not strange.

5) That Michael Flynn’s firing after less than a month on the job was really just because he had misled Mike Pence.

6) That Donald Trump’s pressure on James Comey to go soft on Michael Flynn was purely a measure of loyalty and friendship from a person who has rarely shown those traits before.

7) That Comey’s firing, at least according to evolving White House accounts, was due to his mishandling of the Clinton file — no, wait. It was due to poor management of the FBI, which was suffering from low morale — uh, no. It was because of two factual errors Comey made in congressional testimony. Finally, that it was really over the “Russia thing” — but only because Trump was an innocent man frustrated by Comey’s unwillingness to clear him publicly.

8) That White House objections to sanctions against Russia, which passed the Senate 98-2, are purely procedural.

9) That former Manafort partner and Trump surrogate Roger Stone, who boasted about links to WikiLeaks founder and America-hater Julian Assange, and accurately predicted in August 2016 that John Podesta would be next “in the barrel,” was just lucky.

10) That statements by Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr. about Russian financial ties are not revealing. Golf writer James Dodson quoted Eric as explaining in 2014 how the Trump organization was able to get financing for various golf courses even after the Great Recession. “Well, we don’t rely on American banks. We have all the funding we need out of Russia. We just go there all the time.” Donald Trump Jr., who also traveled to Russia frequently, spoke at a 2008 real estate conference and noted that “Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets. We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia.” When Donald Trump stated, “I have zero investments in Russia,” he did not say that Russia had zero investments in him, but we should believe his other claim, “I have nothing to do with Russia.”

11) That Donald Trump is the first president since 1949 to cast doubt on America’s commitment to NATO, but this is overdue and good for the U.S.

12) That Donald Trump’s obsessive attacks on “fake news” are not an attempt to inoculate himself against future revelations but just good old-fashioned right-wing hatred of liberals.

Writes for Creators Syndicate.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Opinion

Opinion: ‘Little Pink House’ speaks truth to power

Coming soon to a cinema near you — you can make this happen; read on — is a bite-your-nails true-story thriller featuring heroes, villains and a history-making struggle over … the Constitution’s Takings Clause. Next Feb. 24, “Little Pink House” will win the Oscar for best picture if Hollywood’s political preening...
Opinion: What happened in Starbucks isn’t really about Starbucks

I don’t drink coffee, so I can’t boycott Starbucks. But I wouldn’t if I could. Yes, I understand — and share — the national anger over viral video of last week’s arrest of two African-American men at one of the company’s Philadelphia stores. The men, who have yet to be identified, were reportedly doing nothing...
Editorial cartoon
Editorial cartoon

CARTOON VIEW DAVID HORSEY
POINT OF VIEW: YouTube shooter fits most important narrative of all

Few would have guessed the next shooting to make national news would be carried out by a female animal-rights activist enraged at YouTube for demonetizing her fitness videos. And because YouTube shooter Nasim Najafi Aghdam doesn’t fit into the familiar narratives of the gun epidemic, those on the right have taken to Twitter to create narratives...
Letters: Sandy Hook denier is indefensible

Sandy Hook denier is indefensible Palm Beach Post reader Barbara Susco praises disgraced former Florida Atlantic University professor James Tracy in her letter, “Pursuit of real news becomes paramount,” (April 17). As a father of an 8-year-old, my blood ran cold reading her defense of this monster who not only denied the reality of the...
More Stories