Mueller Reportedly Concludes He Cannot Indict Trump While He’s President

Robert Mueller has reportedly concluded that he cannot indict a sitting President. This is not a vindication of Trump, and merely upholds a conclusion that the Justice Department reached four decades ago.

CNN is reporting that Robert Mueller has reportedly told President Trump’s lawyers that his team does not believe that it can indict the President while he is in office:

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team has informed President Donald Trump’s attorneys that they have concluded that they cannot indict a sitting president, according to the President’s lawyer.

“All they get to do is write a report,” Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani told CNN. “They can’t indict. At least they acknowledged that to us after some battling, they acknowledged that to us.”

That conclusion is likely based on longstanding Justice Department guidelines. It is not about any assessment of the evidence Mueller’s team has compiled.

A lack of an indictment would not necessarily mean the President is in the clear. Mueller could issue a report making referrals or recommendations to the House of Representatives.

The inability to indict a sitting president has been the position of the Office of Legal Counsel in the Justice Department since the Nixon administration and reaffirmed in the Clinton administration, but it has never been tested in court.

It had been an open question whether, if investigators found potentially criminal evidence against Trump, Mueller’s team would try to challenge those Justice Department guidelines.

CNN reached out to Mueller’s team. They declined to comment.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein publicly discussed the issue earlier this month at an event held by the Freedom Forum Institute.

He was asked if a sitting president can be indicted.

“I’m not going to answer this in the context of any current matters, so you shouldn’t draw any inference about it,” Rosenstein said. “But the Department of Justice has in the past, when the issue arose, has opined that a sitting President cannot be indicted. There’s been a lot of speculation in the media about this, I just don’t have anything more to say about it.” Rosenstein oversees the special counsel probe.
Giuliani tells CNN the special counsel’s team has decided that “they have to follow the Justice Department rules.”

“The Justice Department memos going back to before Nixon say that you cannot indict a sitting president, you have to impeach him. Now there was a little time in which there was some dispute about that, but they acknowledged to us orally that they understand that they can’t violate the Justice Department rules,” Giuliani said.

“We think it’s bigger than that. We think it’s a constitutional rule, but I don’t think you’re ever going to confront that because nobody’s ever going to indict a sitting president. So, what does that leave them with? That leaves them with writing a report,” said Giuliani.

It would then be up to the House of Representatives to decide what to do about with the special counsel’s report — and whether to pursue articles of impeachment.

While CNN treated this as “Breaking News” yesterday, it really isn’t news at all. As the article notes, it has been Justice Department policy since the Nixon Administration and was reaffirmed during the Clinton Presidency. The issue first came to a head in 1974 during the Watergate investigation, then being headed by Special Prosecutor Leon Jaworski, who had replaced Archibald Cox in that role in the wake of the Saturday Night Massacre that led to the firing of Archibald Cox. At the time, there had never been any consideration of whether or not a sitting President can be indicted by a Federal Grand Jury. At that time, the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel concluded that a sitting President cannot be indicted while in office. In summary, the OLC argued that a President who might face the prospect of criminal prosecution could be dangerously constrained in his decision making in areas critical to his role as President and Commander In Chief. Instead, the only proper way to proceed is for Congress to act pursuant to the Constitution via the impeachment and removal procedure provided for in Clauses 6 and 7 of Article I, Section Three and Article II, Section Four of the Constitution. As the Constitution states in Article I Section 7, once a President or other government official is impeached or removed from office they can be subject to “Indictment, Trial, Judgment, and Punishment, according to Law.” This is why Jaworski and the Watergate Grand Jury ultimately did not indict Nixon in 1974 but instead named him as an ‘unindicted co-conspirator,’ and why Ford pardoned Nixon in September 1974. In 2000, in the wake of the Monica Lewinsky scandal, the OLC reaffirmed its 1974 conclusions on this issue.

Given this history, it’s not surprising that Mueller and his team would conclude that they cannot indict President Trump regardless of what evidence they may uncover during the course of their investigation. Instead, they must follow the procedure followed by Jaworski forty-four years ago, and by Whitewater Special Prosecutor twenty-four years later, and issue a report which may or may not be submitted to Congress. If it is, then it would be ultimately left to the House of Representatives to determine whether the President should be impeached and if he is then it would be the Senate’s responsibility to conduct a trial as they did in the cases of Presidents Andrew Johnson in 1868 and Bill Clinton the late 19990s. Obviously, it’s unlikely that a House of Representatives controlled by Republicans would impeach a Republican President, but a House controlled by the Democrats might look at the issue differently. Additionally, it should be noted that if a Republican House declines to impeach Trump based on a Mueller report issued this year, which may or may not happen, there would be no legal or procedural bar to the Democrats taking up the issue should they win control of Congress in either 2018 or 2020. There is no statute of limitations on impeachment, and the fact that a previous House declined to act does not bind the actions of a future House of Representatives.

Several Trump-supporting conservative outlets are cheering this news as if it is somehow a vindication of the President — see herehere, and here for examples — but that couldn’t be further from the truth. As stated above, the Justice Department concluded four decades ago that a sitting President cannot be indicated. That conclusion was restated in 2000 in the midst of the Clinton Impeachment. While it’s true that this conclusion has never been tested in Court, it seems to me to be a well-reasoned conclusion based on the Constitution and the role of the President in the government. In any case, it’s been unlikely that Mueller or Rosenstein would seek to move against this position with respect to Trump. Contrary to the arguments now being made by Trump supporters and by Giuliani that this is somehow a victory for Trump, this is far from the end of the Mueller investigation and it does not mean at all that the President is free from jeopardy in the matters that Mueller is investigating.

FILED UNDER: *FEATURED, Donald Trump, Law and the Courts, Politicians, Russia Investigation, US Politics, ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Mark Ivey says:

    No indictment-no crime.
    But everyone around him can be indicted..




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  2. No, all this means is that a sitting President can’t be indicted. It doesn’t mean there wasn’t a crime, or that the President isn’t potentially guilty of something.




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  3. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Doug Mataconis: It does to Rudy and the folks at Gateway et al.




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  4. @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    Yea but they’re idiots.




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  5. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    All that this dictat means (and note that I disagree with it) is that a sitting president ostensibly can’t be indicted while in office. It’s a procedural guideline with respect to DOJ, not a settled point of constitutional law. I have no constitutional problem with indicting a sitting president. Indeed, I think that we’re overdue to have the issue settled by SCOTUS as a matter of law.

    I’ll go one further and argue that this guideline, if followed, must by necessity toll any and all applicable SOL’s with respect to indictable offenses committed by a president. The second he/she leaves office? Indict and prosecute – with vigor.

    LOL, hell, for this president? I’d arrest him at the inauguration of his successor, the second that he/she uttered the final word of the oath of office. He likes being on TV, after all 😀




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  6. @HarvardLaw92:

    I believe I made the point that this is a conclusion by the OLC rather than settled law clear. That being said, I don’t see Mueller or Rosenstein, who would have to sign off on any such indictment, acting counter to that conclusion.




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  7. @HarvardLaw92:

    I’ll go one further and argue that this guideline, if followed, must by necessity toll any and all applicable SOL’s with respect to indictable offenses committed by a president.

    Yea I would tend to agree with that.




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  8. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Nor do I. In fact I hope not. The perception that a criminal president is being protected from the law for partisan political reasons by a complicit Republican Congressional majority amounts to a political gift from Heaven. The mileage we’d get out of that one is too large to comprehend.

    At its most basic, the goal here is to destroy the GOP. Trump alone isn’t sufficient.




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  9. Kathy says:

    The trumpidians see everything as an exoneration of the Royal Cheeto. So to translate it in terms they can understand:

    The DOJ will not indict Mangolini so long as he keeps impersonating the president. They can, as has been noted already in this thread, indict him after he stops his very unconvincing act. They can also refer the matter to the House for impeachment. And as has also been noted, they can name him an unindicted co-conspirator.

    And none of what you just read is an exoneration.




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  10. Franklin says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    All that this dictat means (and note that I disagree with it) is that a sitting president ostensibly can’t be indicted while in office.

    Just to be 100% sure I understand what you’re saying, is that he could still be indicted/tried/convicted for these crimes when he leaves office.

    Regardless, he could also be impeached based on the report, although that may be unlikely with the current makeup of Congress.




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  11. @Franklin:

    Just to be 100% sure I understand what you’re saying, is that he could still be indicted/tried/convicted for these crimes when he leaves office.

    Yes.

    That is the prospect that Nixon was facing when he resigned in 1974. And Ford pardoned him because he believed that the best thing for the nation was to move on from the Watergate crisis. In retrospect, I think he made the right choice.

    (I know this question was directed at HarvardLaw92, but I figured I’d step in. I think we’ll be in agreement on the answer to this question in any case.)




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  12. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Franklin:

    Correct. This is probably the primary reason that Ford pardoned Nixon – to avoid the ongoing rancor that prosecuting him after he’d resigned would have produced. Had Ford not pardoned Nixon, the odds that he’d have eventually served time in a federal prison are quite high.

    It’s a win win. We get to hang it around the necks of Congressional Republicans that they’re protecting a felon, and we would still get to throw his ass in prison once he leaves office.




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  13. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    Rudy just moved the goalposts…

    When I ran against [the Democrats], they were looking for dirt on me every day…That’s what you do, maybe you shouldn’t, but you do. Nothing illegal about that…Even if it comes from a Russian or a German or an American, doesn’t matter.

    So it used to be that there was no collusion (conspiracy).
    Now… So what if there is collusion? Who cares? We all do it.

    They never used it…They rejected it. If there was collusion with the Russians, they would have used it.

    Rejected what, exactly, Rudy?




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  14. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    Speaking of gifts from Heaven … 🙂




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  15. @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    Rudy is fast becoming the worst Presidential lawyer in history.




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  16. Kathy says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    So it used to be that there was no collusion (conspiracy).
    Now… So what if there is collusion? Who cares? We all do it.

    I’m ignorant of the law about the matter. But ethically the problem isn’t getting dirt on a candidate from a foreign government. Rather it would be giving something of value in exchange. Specifically adjusting US foreign policy in ways, large or small, that favor said foreign government. that’s allowing a foreign power to meddle in the internal affairs of the US, and a significant loss of sovereignty. Even promising something in exchange and then reneging on the promise (something Trump is good at), would be highly unethical.




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  17. James Pearce says:

    I’m actually glad to hear this. Perhaps now we can stop indulging in the fantasy that Mueller is going to end Trump’s presidency with an indictment and we can now focus on ending Trump’s presidency by building a political coalition that can win an election.




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  18. michael reynolds says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:
    Yep. I told @Bung long ago that by the end he’d be arguing, “So what if Trump’s a traitor? MAGA!” Cults of Personality exert powerful holds on weak minds. If Trump raped a ten year old on the White House lawn @Bung and the rest would defend him. They’re incapable of doing anything now but going down with the ship.




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  19. CSK says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Actually, I think they’d be more likely to say it was Fake News.




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  20. michael reynolds says:

    @James Pearce:
    God you’re tedious. The same tired noises which you never, ever back up with any concrete suggestions, leaving us with the strong suspicion that you don’t actually have any ideas.

    Mueller can indict Don Jr., Jared and Ivanka in addition to Manafort, Gates, Flynn, Stone and (longshot hope) Devin Nunes. He can name Trump as un-indicted co-conspirator and arrest him the day his successor is sworn in. There is an avalanche of sht coming.

    1) After Nixon we didn’t elect Carter on the strength of his ideas, we elected him because he was honest.
    2) The Democratic agenda is being decided right now in primaries all across the country. Which is how it always works with Democrats.
    3) There are quite a few clear positions being taken by Dems – anti-war, more income distribution, pro-LGBT, pro-legalization, against tax cuts for the wealthy, pro-DACA, pro-NATO, pro-JCPOA. So, again, if there’s something missing from that list that you’re dying to hear from Democrats why don’t you take five minutes and tell us just what the hell it is. Because the vague, distressed mooing sounds are tiresome.




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  21. michael reynolds says:

    @CSK:
    Oh, they can do both: claim it was real but irrelevant, and also fake. You can’t possibly be a true Trumpaloon unless you can believe two opposite ideas simultaneously, and switch between the two depending on the latest tweet from Dear Leader.




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  22. dmichael says:

    It is incomprehensible how anyone could believe a word from Rudy Giuliani. He is the sole source for this story which claims that Mueller’s team says no indictment of this president while president. Giuliani makes this claim to provide some unwarranted “good news” for Trump. NONE of this matters. I doubt Mueller’s team said anything on this subject to Giuliani. Meanwhile evidence of more financial crimes surrounding Michael Cohen, “personal lawyer to the President” comes out.




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  23. JKB says:

    @HarvardLaw92: and we would still get to throw his ass in prison once he leaves office.

    No, what you would get is to have a partisan show trial dominate the news worldwide for three or four years of the next president’s administration. And every day, the whole matter would be laid out for the public not as partisan, unsubstantiated leaks, but as rebutted arguments in open court.

    Do you really think the next occupant of the Oval Office is going to want their entire presidency overshadowed by a Donald Trump prosecution with the country on the edge of civil war if it doesn’t achieve an outcome that is acceptable by 90% of the population?

    Best you can hope for is a report that becomes part of the historical record and that might impact the 2020 election.




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  24. Kathy says:

    Here’s a different legal question:

    Supposing Mangolini gets impeached and removed, could he then, once removed, be indicted, tried, and convicted for the same crimes that caused his removal? Or would that constitute double jeopardy?

    I’m assuming it does not, insofar as impeachment and removal are political rather than criminal matters.

    This is more idle curiosity than anything else. Much as I’d like to see Trump wearing an orange jumpsuit to match his ugly face, I don’t expect that to ever happen.




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  25. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:
    Everyone around Trump – including his idiot son and his incest-fantasy daughter – is likely to be indicted on various felonies. Mueller names Trump an unindicted co-conspirator. The prosecutions of Don Jr., Manafort, Ivanka, Jared, Cohen et al can proceed without delay and dominate the back half of Trump’s term.

    Other jurisdictions – the SDNY, the NY State AG, California – also have their say, issuing indictments that mirror the fed indictments and Trump’s un-indicted co-conspirator status.

    So Trump either watches as his family is hauled away. . . or he pardons everyone. Which does nothing to save them from NY State charges. Or he fires Rosenstein and replaces him with someone who will fire Mueller. But of course, too, late: the evidence has been collected, the referrals have been made, and the Senate will have a hell of a fun time trying to approve a new Deputy AG.

    By the time this all shakes out Trump will be clearly, unmistakably outed as a criminal and as a traitor. He’ll be holding onto office solely to save himself from prosecution. He’ll have no political power, and he already has no agenda. So, a discredited, castrated Trump as object of ridicule and scorn who with each passing day reveals the hypocrisy, dishonesty and anti-American beliefs of people like you?

    Hey, I’m okay with that.




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  26. Kylopod says:

    @Kathy: Of course someone removed from office could then be sentenced for the crime that led to their removal. It’s happened to officials other than president, such as Rod Blagojevich. It’s not double jeopardy since an impeachment trial is not a legal trial and in itself has no direct legal consequences.




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  27. gVOR08 says:

    What @dmichael: said. This all seems to come from Giuliani, so there’s no reason to accept it as any indication of Mueller’s thinking. “Target”of the investigation seems to mean they expect to indict. If they don’t feel they can indict, then any statement that Trump isn’t a target is meaningless. If Nixon was named as an unindicted co-conspirator, Trump can be. He could be threatened with future indictment, and if guaranteed not, he loses the Fifth. If Trump can’t be indicted, Jr., Jared, Ivanka, and numerous associates can be. A process that could drag on into the ’20 election. Or Trump could accept a deal that would save some of his money and some of his family, and stay out of jail with a pardon from President Pence. Who hopefully would fare like Ford in the subsequent election.

    Also, a booking photo of Nixon would have done wonders for political ethics and perhaps have saved us some of our current difficulties.




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  28. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @JKB:

    with the country on the edge of civil war if it doesn’t achieve an outcome that is acceptable by 90% of the population?

    That actually made me laugh out loud. Thanks 🙂

    No, dear, what we get is what we should have gotten with Nixon – vindication that the system works as it should. The opportunity to put the GOP on trial – on national television – would just be a bonus.




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  29. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @gVOR08:

    Also, a booking photo of Nixon would have done wonders for political ethics and perhaps have saved us some of our current difficulties.

    Bingo. From a political perspective, I get why Ford did what he did. I also understand why it was a gross mistake. The country needed the catharsis of a trial and conviction to cleanse the infection of Watergate. Instead, the infection lingers (and threatens to kill its host).




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  30. James Pearce says:

    @michael reynolds:

    God you’re tedious.

    You know what’s really tedious? Being told “you’re this” and “you’re that” from supposedly decent, fair people when I post a difference of opinion. Why can’t you just disagree?

    Take it from me. It’s not that hard.

    The Democratic agenda is being decided right now in primaries all across the country.

    Pretty sure the agenda is already set and what’s being decided is the pose. What will is be this time? More free college? Unionizing during the Retailopocalypse?




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  31. Hal_10000 says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    It’s only a matter of time until Rudy admits that Trump had Stormy Daniels threatened, admits to collusion, admits to bribery and fraud and, hell, probably ten others things we’re not even discussing. He’s so arrogant, he honestly believes he’s “owning the libs” by throwing all this stuff out there and then chortling about how it’s all OK.




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  32. Mister Bluster says:

    @gVOR08:..a booking photo of Nixon would have done wonders for political ethics and perhaps have saved us some of our current difficulties.

    Me and 58,220 body bags are still waiting for this one.




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  33. Mister Bluster says:

    @HarvardLaw92:..I’ll go one further and argue that this guideline, if followed, must by necessity toll any and all applicable SOL’s with respect to indictable offenses committed by a president.

    All SOL has ever meant to me was sh!t outta’ luck.
    As much as I hope that this applies to Pud I’m just not getting the context.




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  34. the Q says:

    So if Trump literally murders someone he can’t be indicted until after he’s President? It has to go to the House for impeachment? Given the wingnuts mindset, unless there is videotape and 100 eyewitnesses, the murder charge will be a FBI Democrat Deep state plot to ruin the President and just not worthy of dragging the country through a divisive process. And besides, Hillary sold all the country’s uranium to the Russians, the FBI spying on Trump was greater than the Watergate crises and Mueller’s an anti colonial Kenyan born Marxist. Ooops, sorry, getting my wingnut mythologies screwed up.




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  35. rachel says:

    Contrary to the arguments now being made by Trump supporters and by Giuliani that this is somehow a victory for Trump,…

    I don’t see how this is even close to a victory for Trump. Shouldn’t a lawyer be arguing that his client is innocent, not that his client is untouchable?




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  36. pylon says:

    I understand that such a conclusion exists from the Nixon years and was reiterated during the Clinton era. however, I also understand (from Napolitano of all sources) that there is a contrary opinion on file at the DOJ (also from the Clinton era).

    But, being a mere Canadian lawyer, I can’t understand it. From what I know, all power and obligations of the President come from the Constitution. I can’t see where in that document an indictment for a sitting president is out of reach. I can see the argument that a conviction for something done under ostensible authority (like firing Comey) is hard to achieve even if it is really an obstruction of justice. But an indictment for something (collaboration with foreign governments to interfere with an election) especially prior to becoming President?

    So what is the legal authority for this conclusion?




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  37. pylon says:

    Did my query about the legal basis for this opinion go up in smoke?




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  38. michael reynolds says:

    @James Pearce:
    In other words, once again you have nothing to offer on what you insist is a big problem. You keep being offered a chance to say something substantive, but you never do. Why is that?




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  39. KM says:

    @James Pearce :

    More free college?

    Explain what exactly is wrong with “free college” (it’s not really but I’ll play). Right now, college debt is a HUGE millstone around 2 generations that delays important economic purchases like housing, cars, etc. It’s becoming a major factor in marriage rates and effects socio-economic indicators (the “under-employed”). Frankly, it’s going to be problem for decades unless we do something and it’s a hit the economy really can’t afford if it keeps getting worse.

    We provide free elementary and high school education to the public for a *reason* – an ignorant populace is a MASSIVE problem for any country, let alone a world power. If you decided that “free education” is an entitlement that must stop stealing from taxpayers, the riots would impressive. We’ve become accustomed to the idea that every child in this nation is entitled to learn and have adjusted our social expectations to fit.
    So why do we stop at 18? Why not free job training and/or college? I’d rather my tax dollars go to paying for a populace that understands the world around them better and graduates with more income to use to buy my products then waste it supporting dying industries that can’t support themselves in modern times. It’s simply a better overall investment and one other civilized nations take to raise their standard of living. It will DEFINITELY help the forgotten children – the poor, the rural and those work-class kids who dream of a single job that can pay for their bills. It might be some rural kid’s only chance at higher education and escaping a dying town’s cycle of poverty.

    But noooo, socialism or some crap. Entitlements! What are the Dems thinking?




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  40. Lounsbury says:

    @michael reynolds:
    No, he’s just not gone off the deep end as you have.




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  41. Kylopod says:

    @Hal_10000: I have long been a firm believer in Trump’s Razor—the idea that when it comes to the behavior of Trump or anyone working for him, the stupidest explanation is usually the correct one. I always roll my eyes when people talk about 10D chess or try to look for some hidden motivation for actions that on the surface just look laughably inept.

    All that said, if someone wanted to deliberately sabotage Trump from the inside, it’s hard to imagine them acting any differently than Rudy.




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  42. KM says:

    @pylon:

    So what is the legal authority for this conclusion?

    It’s implicit, not stated. Logical trains of thought that leave people with a perfectly sound conclusion F but no explicit text to back up each step.

    Taking a step further, exactly where in the Constitution does it say the sitting President can’t be a convicted criminal? All impeachment talks about is removal from office – where does it say you can’t be indicted or tried and still allowed to serve? You can’t throw the President in jail for murder because that removes him from duty (“inability to discharge powers and duties”) but it doesn’t say they can’t be put on trial. We’re all jumping to the conclusion that because such a thing would result in a legally guilty as determined by the courts individual in charge of the country but frankly, it’s an inference and not textually based.

    The fact that we’re even debating this is absurd AF but welcome to the age of Trump.




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  43. An Interested Party says:

    Rudy Giuliani has already proven what a joke he is as a legal representative, so if this information is coming from him, it can be taken with less than a grain of salt…as we have seen in the past, judges can interpret laws any way they want and there have often been cases where something wasn’t theoretically possible but was later ruled as law by judges, so it is a tad premature to say that a sitting president cannot be indicted…




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  44. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Kathy: I’ve channeled my inner TM01–

    Blah blah blah… Who cares libtard? You can’t get him! He’s free and you got nothing! Suck on those lemons and then go cry on Killery’s shoulder because no one in real America cares.




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  45. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @JKB: Ya know, after BENGHAAAAAAZZZZZZZIIIIIIIII!!!!!!!!!, I guess I’m vindictive and hateful enough that I’m up for the other side getting their chance to put on a show. And I’m willing to bet that they’ll do a better job of producing theirs.




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  46. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @gVOR08:

    …a deal that would save some of his money and some of his family,

    1. I’m no longer convinced that there is any “money” per se. Just sayin’.
    2. Some of his family? Grandkids? Barron? Melania? Fredo’s ex-wife? I suspect they’re not part of the investigation.




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  47. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Mister Bluster: Statutes Of Limitations? It took me a long time, too.




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  48. michael reynolds says:

    @Lounsbury:
    I’ve been nothing but right about this investigation from Day One. I said it was about money-laundering and now, slowly we get the reveal: it was about money-laundering. I could go on and on at tedious length, but the fact is I’ve been pretty much nothing but right about Trump, his character, his limited abilities, and about his crime family’s activities. If you know of an error I’ve made, do let me know, I do correct myself when necessary.

    But just because I’m ahead of you doesn’t mean I’m off a deep end. I just didn’t find this mystery particularly challenging to understand. Most of the pieces are right there, right out in the open. But hey, why should we argue when time will reveal whether I’m off the deep end, or just a bit quicker on the up-take? I’m content to wait. It won’t be much longer now, I suspect. Interviews with the remaining witnesses in the next month, indictments and report I’m guessing by late July in time for my birthday – unless they suspend for the mid-terms.




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  49. Zachriel says:

    @Kathy: Supposing Mangolini gets impeached and removed, could he then, once removed, be indicted, tried, and convicted for the same crimes that caused his removal?

    Article I, Section 3: Judgment in Cases of Impeachments shall not extend further than to removal from Office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any Office of honor, Trust, or Profit under the United States, but the Party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial, Judgment, and Punishment, according to Law.




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  50. James Pearce says:

    @michael reynolds:

    In other words, once again you have nothing to offer on what you insist is a big problem.

    I have been very clear and consistent on this: the superficiality, the laziness, the unceasing stupidity. Affluent, urban liberals claiming for themselves the poor, the disenfranchised, the downtrodden, an entire gender, and every race but one, only to cloister themselves in their nice neighborhoods making loud noises about the stuff they really care about: their TV shows and the stuff that’s not in their backyards.

    You know Flint still doesn’t have clean water, right?

    @KM:

    Explain what exactly is wrong with “free college”

    “Free college” is a response to the old “education, education, education” policies which was sold as a way to remaining competitive in an increasingly globalized world. Well, we all went out and got out educations, and we have the massive student loans and decades of wage stagnation to show for it.

    “Free college” is the answer from folks who are all out of answers.




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  51. An Interested Party says:

    “Free college” is the answer from folks who are all out of answers.

    Well hell, if that’s the case, you should be all for it…




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  52. gVOR08 says:

    @Mister Bluster: Yeah. I see the appeal of religion. It would be a great comfort to believe Kissinger will rot in hell.




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  53. Ben Wolf says:

    @James Pearce: Free college is a response to $1.5 trillion in needless student loan debt. There’s every economic argument in the world for it.




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  54. al Ameda says:

    @James Pearce:

    You know Flint still doesn’t have clean water, right?

    Not that Trump and Pruitt, nor the Republican governor of Michigan, have any interest is solving that problem.
    I blame suburban and urban liberals – in fact, all liberals – for that situation, not sure why, but I do.




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  55. KM says:

    @James Pearce:
    I’m afraid I don’t understand your objection. You say that everyone went out and did it, it cost them a ton of money/debt and they didn’t advance far, correct? So, why is getting it for little to no cost a bad thing then? There’s no debt incurred to you. Frankly, I agree with you in terms of degree inflation – seriously, you don’t need a college degree to do basic office work. However, I do believe things like coding, higher math and science skills, languages and basic life functions like financial education are a must in modern times. College offers more then elementary and high schools can. We try to cram so much into children in the few years of “free education” that we will never cover it all. If we don’t, we’re going to fall further and further behind. So basket-weaving BA for free is a no but an accounting degree is a yes; at least you get some valuable knowledge out of it if not a job.

    You think it sucks for college kids who can’t find a job now? Wait until half the planet has the same education or better with no debt to worry about and thus are willing to work for less. The more other countries invest in their kids, the worse we’re positioning ourselves to compete in the future. “Hire the best candidate” is pretty soon going to be the opposite of “hire American” and that’s truly going to be the death knell for middle America.




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  56. teve tory says:

    And besides, Hillary sold all the country’s uranium to the Russians, the FBI spying on Trump was greater than the Watergate crises and Mueller’s an anti colonial Kenyan born Marxist. Ooops, sorry, getting my wingnut mythologies screwed up.

    That anti-colonialist thing was one of the dumber things Newt Gingrich ever came up with. You know who was also anti-British-colonialist? George Washington.




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  57. James Pearce says:

    @An Interested Party:

    Well hell, if that’s the case, you should be all for it…

    I am all for it. It’s called the library.

    Good luck getting a good job, though, with an education you received at the library.

    @al Ameda:

    I blame suburban and urban liberals

    Who runs Flint, Michigan? Southern Evangelicals? Chamber of Commerce types?

    @KM:

    So, why is getting it for little to no cost a bad thing then?

    It’s not provided at little to no cost, so you’re asking for financial insolvency. I would love to see some kind of demonstrated competence system put in place, but I also understand why people on the left are wedded to “free college.”




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  58. Kylopod says:

    @teve tory:

    That anti-colonialist thing was one of the dumber things Newt Gingrich ever came up with.

    It was actually Dinesh D’Souza who came up with that, Newt just parroted it.




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  59. Mister Bluster says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:..Statute Of Limitations

    Damnit! I knew that. Another symptom of being brain dead half the time.
    I guess when the Statute of Limitations runs out you are Sh!t Outta’ Luck.
    So I wasn’t too far off.




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  60. An Interested Party says:

    @James Pearce: I was thinking of you more with the line about being all out of answers, but hey, whatever gets you through the day…




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  61. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Mister Bluster: True dat! Except that it’s the prosecution, not you. You are in good shape when the SOL has expired. Unless you’re the plaintiff in a lawsuit; then you’re SOL.




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  62. Mister Bluster says:

    @gVOR08:..Kissinger…rot in hell.

    I have always contended that he should be chained to the walls of the tunnels that Vietnamese citizens took shelter in while their villages of grass and mud huts above were being mercilessly bombed in the name of Nixon’s vile pursuit of peace with honor.




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  63. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Mister Bluster:

    Statute of limitations




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  64. Mister Bluster says:

    @HarvardLaw92:
    Yes. Thank you.




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  65. Pylon says:

    @KM:

    My understanding has always been that implication of legal effects has to have some basis in the statute. In other words, you have to imply the law from something in the black letters. I also understand that courts have always only implied law where there is no other conclusion to reach.

    There are reasons, I suppose, why an indictment is a bad idea or could be politicized. But that doesn’t lead to a law.




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  66. KM says:

    @J

    It’s not provided at little to no cost, so you’re asking for financial insolvency.

    The thing is – we’re never going backwards. Like it or not, college is now considered an essential part of your education, not a beneficial extra. In my grandfather’s day, completing elementary school was sufficient to find a decent job. Can you imagine that now? My father’s generation thought completing high school was an achievement and mine grew up with the expectation that college was the boost needed to get you to a better life. My kids will grow up in a world where a 4-yr is expected, a Master’s is nice and that will all be normal. Why? Because companies demand it. Admins where I work have MBAs for god’s sake because that’s a requirement for the job! Social expectations are going to have to reverse and business is going to have to accept that every position doesn’t need candidates with letters after their names.

    I really don’t see that happening, do you? They are the ones paying the HS grad and the college grad the same wage. They’re also the ones insisting on the absurd requirement in the first place. After all, if they can get a candidate out of the deal with more skills for the same price, WTF not? Add to that the fact that most foreigners applying for the same job will have that degree or more and you’ve eliminated the poor HS grad entirely. The lost wages, the economy disparity and the further eroding of the middle class will lead to financial insolvency either way. It may not be the best solution to the problem but it’s better then shoving debt onto the younger generations and waiting for the economy to explode again.




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  67. wr says:

    @James Pearce: “Who runs Flint, Michigan? Southern Evangelicals? Chamber of Commerce types?”

    I realize that facts are inconvenient for you, but during the time when all the decisions were made that led to the Flint crisis, the city was run by a Republican-appointed “manager” after the Republicans in control of the state decided that black people shouldn’t be allowed to govern themselves. It was under Republican leadership that the decision was made to start pumping polluted water to Flint’s residents.

    And yes, that manager is gone and the Democratic leadership hasn’t been able to solve all the problems the Republicans solved. But this is where you can blame liberals — Republican cause disaster that will cost billions to fix, then turn the problem over to Democrats while denying the money to fix it and claim it’s all the Dems’ fault.

    And of course you are always the first in line to sing their little tune.




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  68. James Pearce says:

    @wr:

    And yes, that manager is gone and the Democratic leadership hasn’t been able to solve all the problems the Republicans solved caused.

    Yes, I know. Thank you. Republicans cause problems, and Dems don’t solve them. That’s been my running critique for some time now, hasn’t it? I’ve taken it further, examining why Dems don’t solve the problems that Republicans create, but what am I confronted with time after time after time?

    This idea that the Dems are actually heroes, that they bear no responsibility for our current situation, that when we depose Republicans and install Democrats that all these issues are going to be worked out because the good guys are finally in charge.

    And well…it’s not true, is it? The Dems aren’t heroes. They’re unwitting accomplices of Republicans malfeasance, not victims of it. Put them in office and what will they do?

    Did Obama push for comprehensive immigration reform, or did he brag about deporting a record number of people? (I can’t believe I used to defend him on that….)

    Did Hillary Clinton fight against the Iraq invasion, or did she vote Aye?

    And with Trump, what are they doing? Confirming his nominees, trying to make deals with him, tweeting out quips. Some of them are even out marching with demonstrators like they’re regular old powerless citizens, can’t do nothing but vote once a year.

    They’re so weak and timid and off-putting that a corrupt clown like Donald Trump has a near unimpeded path to fleecing this country. You want to blame Republicans? Fine. I do too.

    But I also blame the Dems, just like you would the fire department who didn’t start the fire but just sat there and watched it burn.




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  69. James Pearce says:

    @KM:

    Like it or not, college is now considered an essential part of your education, not a beneficial extra.

    I don’t believe this is true. I don’t need my food prepared by college-educated people (or people too poor to give a shit, for that matter, but that’s another issue). College remains a place for specialized knowledge and, this is the key point, credentials.

    There should be alternate routes, besides college, to getting credentials. And, it’s funny, there are!

    In my line of work, one of the most valuable credentials you can get is an CCNA and you can’t get that in college.




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