Quick Thoughts on D’Souza
I do not pretend to know if Dinesh D’Souza is guilty of the crime for which he has been indicted, although I will confess that the nature of the case makes it seem more likely that he is than that he isn’t (I am not sure how the alleged activity could have been a mistake, for example). Still, indictments are one thing, and convictions yet another. We shall see how it plays out.
I will say that am not surprised only in the sense that his recent behavior in the context of his marriage raised serious character and judgment issues. Character insofar as it is more than a little problematic to be cavorting in public with a “fiancée” when one is still married, and judgment because how can one be the head of conservative Christian college and be brazen enough to engage in said cavorting during a public appearance at a Baptist Church. Look, if one is the president of a conservative Christian college, divorce is going to cause trouble by itself, but an affair is going to cause more. An affair with a woman who is younger and also married will make it worse. Sharing a room on that trip with the fiancée was remarkably brazen. Anyone who could run in evangelical circles and not even realize the stupidity of the above scenario has very, very poor judgment.
As such, the indictment is not a surprise in a general sense.
What I find odd is that some seem to think that this is Obama using the DOJ to attack a political opponent. Two quick thoughts:
1. The law that he allegedly broke dates back to the original Federal Election Campaign Act, which limits individual contributions to candidates. This has been the law of the land for roughly 40 years. You can’t pay people to give on your behalf and then pay them back as a way of covering up the fact that you are the one giving the money. This provision of the law has been upheld by SCOTUS, in fact. As such, this is not some weird charge.
2. The conspiracy theories are amazing, as they have to assume that D’Souza is some sort of huge thorn in Obama’s side. That is, even if we stipulate for the sake of argument that Obama is willing to use the DOJ as a political tool of this type, why on earth would he be targeting D’Souza? It is a bizarre notion. If Obama was willing to sic Holder on enemies, why not Rush Limbaugh? Roger Ailes? You know, people who actually influence the discourse. Or, for that matter, Paul Ryan, Ted Cruz, etc?