Donald Trump is a severely disturbed individual in desperate need of intense psychotherapy. But being too weakened by his malignant narcissism to ask for the help he clearly needs, he used his failing social media website, TRUTH Social, as his personal, online, cathartic release valve. He uses it almost exclusively to let off steam on anything that upsets, depresses or frightens him at the time.
In a recent article, Trump incoherently denounced the wholly imaginary fears that consume his warped mindset. The triggering event this time is the pending testimony of Pat Cipollone, his former White House attorney, before the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection that Trump instigated.
Earlier testimony from Cassidy Hutchinson, the former aide to Trump’s chief of staff Mark Meadows, revealed that Cipollone warned Trump that his involvement in conspiracies to nullify the election, including his encouragement of insurrection, was illegal. “Please make sure we don’t go to the Capitol, Cassidy,” Cipollone implored Hutchinson. “We are going to be charged with every crime imaginable if we make this move happen.”
Seeking additional details about Trump’s activities during and before the Capitol riots, the Committee recalled Cipollone. And it sparked the following scandal by former reality TV host…
“Why would a future President of the United States want to have candid and important conversations with his lawyer in the White House if he thought there was even a slim chance that this person, essentially acting as an ‘advocate’ for the country, may one day be brought before a partisan and openly hostile committee of Congress, or even a fair and reasonable committee, to reveal inside secrets of foreign policy or other important issues.Too bad for the United States!
This tirade is another demonstration of Trump’s ignorance of government processes and the law. He thinks every conversation with the White House attorney is privileged. It’s wrong. Conversations that do not involve the official duties of the President are not protected by executive or attorney/client privilege. More importantly in this case is that conversations that involve the commission of a crime are also not protected.
What Trump is really asking is “Why would a future President of the United States want to” discuss with his White House attorney his seditious plot to undermine democracy and overthrow the government? Which is actually a great question. Too bad for Trump that he didn’t think of that before incriminating himself.
Furthermore, there is nothing in the conversations for which the Committee seeks testimony that implies “the intimate secrets of foreign policy or other [official] Questions.” It’s a red herring that Trump has thrown into the stew to trick his cult followers into thinking he has a rational argument. He doesn’t.
Trump also shows that he ignores recent history. His hysterical reaction to his attorney’s White House testimony suggests he thinks this is an unprecedented case. However, anyone with a bit of institutional memory knows that Richard Nixon’s attorney, John Dean, testified before Congress and was instrumental in bringing down Nixon. Or maybe someone informed Trump of this fact, and that’s what he’s afraid of.
In any case, Trump’s fear is well founded. With the mounting evidence of criminal behavior on his part and that of his associates, he must know that there will likely be legal consequences to follow. So he goes wild with these pitifully ignorant outbursts in the safety of his own social media website. He is obviously not trying to convince the general public that he is an innocent victim of “deep state” persecutors.
In fact, Trump is only adding to his legal peril by unleashing more inflammatory comments that have the potential to incite more violence. And members of the House committee, as well as prosecutors in the Justice Department and state offices, are surely paying attention.
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