Letter to the Editor

How far will Mueller take this?

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

As the Mueller investigation continues, President Trump has stated numerous times: "There is no Collusion!"

He is probably correct. Legally, there is no crime defined as collusion. As Special Counsel Mueller continues his years-long investigation, the apparent crimes being pursued are obstruction of justice and conspiracy to commit crimes against the United States of America.

By definition, conspiracy is secret planning by a group of people to do something illegal and is likely to be harmful. Regarding this issue, Michael Cohenís name comes forward.

Michael Cohen, the former personal attorney for President Trump who is now a key witness in Robert Mueller's investigation was under the impression Trump would offer him a pardon in exchange for staying on message in support of the president. As Trump's personal attorney, he was aware and considered a fixer for Trumpís many legal problems. Statements by Trump's now personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani indicate the pardon is not likely. After denying on many occasions that the affairs with Stormy Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal ever happened, Trump finally admitted they did happen, and he repaid Cohen the $130,000 and $150,000 Cohen had paid the women for their silence. A non-disclosure agreement was drawn up to protect Trump, but it was invalid because Trump never singed it. So, what is the consequence of this? The payout was clearly meant to hide the incidents from the public prior to the election and, in an illegal manner, influence the election ó a serious crime against the United States.

As serious as this crime is, it gets even worse. There has been a long standing issue between Vladimir Putin and Hillary Clinton that started in 2011 when Clinton was Secretary of State. She issued a statement that the Russian parliamentary elections were rigged by the administration in Putinís favor. A continued critical stance by Clinton toward the Russians only increased their dislike of her. Trumpís announcement of a run for the presidency against Clinton offered a possibility for Russia to have a friend among their American enemies. Thirteen U.S. intelligence agencies have identified a well-documented campaign by the Russians to help Trump win the Presidency. Michael Cohenís new input can help determine the amount of aid the Trump administration contributed.

Now the speculation begins. What will Mueller make of all this? We can see that campaign finance laws have been broken, but the ticklish question of treason arises.

Treason is the only crime specifically defined in the Constitution. According to Article lll , Section 3; A person is guilty of treason if he or she goes to war against the United States or gives "aid or comfort" to the enemy. He or she does not have to physically pick up a weapon and fight in combat against U.S. troops. Actively helping the enemy by passing along classified information or supplying weapons, for example, can lead to charges of treason.

Is Russia our enemy? She's certainly not our friend. Without a doubt, as our adversary she definitely benefits by having Trump elected as President rather than Clinton. 
The question for Mueller to answer is Ė Was there conspiracy?

As we hopefully near the end of Muellerís investigation everyone wonders Ė what will happen next? Some say a sitting president cannot be indicted. A legal expert states, "The Constitution creates an executive branch with a President under sworn obligation to execute the law. The Constitution does not create an absolute monarch that is above the law."

So, how far will (can) Robert Mueller take this?

Robert Sneitzer

Spirit Lake