The Case For and Against The Appointment Of A Special Counsel In The Hunter Biden Investigation

Below is my column in the Hill on grounds for and against the appointment of a Special Counsel in the Hunter Biden investigation. By refusing address the underlying allegations, Joe Biden is magnifying the concerns over possible conflicts of interest and his own possible exposure. Biden is maintaining that he will not ask potential Justice Department nominees about the investigation but he is also refusing to answer specific questions. In the meantime, he appeared to confirm that he views the investigation to be Russian disinformation.  That is a familiar profile in a scandal at the start of an Administration and Democrats are likely to face their own prior calls to investigate the Trump family on such questions of foreign influence.

Here is the column:

While Joe Biden continues to avoid specific questions on the Hunter Bidenscandal, there reportedly are”ongoing discussions” at the Justice Department on whether to appoint a special counsel. Ironically, Joe Biden’s refusal to address specific allegations has only fueled concerns of possible conflicts for his Justice Department conducting this investigation. His stonewalling is making the best case for a special counsel — but some unknowns remain critical to the decision.

Attorney General William Barr left his position this week, following very public conflicts with President Trump, including his opposition to special counsel appointments to investigate the 2020 election and the Hunter Biden scandal. Barr clearly was not opposed to making such appointments; he converted United States attorney John Durham into a special counsel, to guarantee that Durham will complete his investigation into the handling of the Russian collusion investigation.

The question is whether such grounds could emerge with regard to the Hunter Biden investigation. Justice Department regulations allow the appointment of a special counsel when it is in the public interest and an “investigation or prosecution of that person or matter by a United States Attorney’s Office or litigating Division of the Department of Justice would present a conflict of interest for the Department or other extraordinary circumstances.”

The case for a special counsel

Clear conflicts are present in this investigation for Joe Biden. Most obviously, it involves his son. In addition, Biden has stated repeatedly for more than a year that “no one has suggested my son did anything wrong.” That clearly is not true; many people agree that Hunter Biden was engaged in raw influence-peddling on a global scale. That may not be a crime but it certainly is ethically wrong. Nevertheless, Biden continued that claim after the disclosure that Hunter is the subject or target of a federal investigation. He has referred to the allegations as a continuation of political “foul play” targeting his family.

Previously, Democrats insisted that Trump’s public dismissal of the Russia investigation as a “hoax” supported the appointment of a special counsel. In addition, powerful Democrats like House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff claimed the Hunter Biden laptop and emails discovered before the election were just “Russian disinformation” and “this whole smear on Joe Biden comes from the Kremlin.”

Biden himself responded affirmatively — “yes, yes, yes” — to a recent question about whether allegations against his son are “Russian disinformation and a smear campaign, like you said?” So,any criminal or other wrongdoing found by prosecutors would be an obvious embarrassment to Biden.

Further, serious apparent conflicts were revealed in the laptop and emails seized by federal investigators. Biden has refused to acknowledge that the laptop and emails are genuine. He has refused to address direct contradictions in those emails. He has declined to address accounts of key witnesses like Hunter’s business associate, Tony Bobulinski, referring to Biden’s direct knowledge or involvement — in direct conflict with Biden’s repeated denials. The emails refer to payments, office space and other benefits for Joe Biden and his family from foreign countries, particularly China.

Finally, Joe Biden has more than a son or his own credibility at stake. This investigation started in 2018 with a Treasury Department suspicious activity report. That does not mean there was a crime, but foreign financial transactions were flagged as suspicious and there are indications that money-laundering concerns may have been raised.

Repeated references to Joe Biden in these emails could create legal exposure. He could face exposure in other ways, too. One of the reasons Biden has not called Bobulinski a liar is that it likely would trigger a defamation lawsuit with sworn depositions and discovery. Biden is well aware of the perils from such civil litigation. After all, he voted as a senator in the Clinton impeachment trial, which included allegations that Bill Clinton lied under oath in his deposition.

The case against a special counsel

Much of this decision depends on the specific scope and underlying crimes of any investigations. Bill Barr knew those facts when he rejected the need for a special counsel. If this is a narrow tax investigation, then it likely is near completion. The key is not the appointment of a special counsel but the continuation of the current U.S. Attorney in his position pending completion.

During Barr’s tenure, the Justice Department handled a variety of investigations impacting Trump, from the Mueller probe to various investigations into the Trump organization and Trump advisers like Rudy Giuliani and his aides. None required special counsels; all continued without interference or manipulation under Barr’s leadership. There also is a reluctance to allow special counsels to proliferate unless there is little alternative. The potential to embarrass a president is generally not enough. After all, if everyone is a special counsel, they are no longer very special.

The biggest issue is that influence-peddling is legal. It is the favorite form of corruption in Washington. While you cannot give a politician like Biden an envelope of money, you can give his son or other relatives millions in dubious contracts, gifts and loans. The special counsel regulations involve “an investigation or prosecution” only into criminal acts. The Justice Department does not investigate politicians’ unethical conduct or simple lying. Otherwise, it would have little time to do anything else.

Notably, this argument against a special counsel appointment also is an argument for a congressional investigation. Various Democrats demanded investigations of Trump family dealings in foreign countries, including calls for a special counsel or other investigations. In 2018, Schiff wrotethat “the American people deserve to know that our president is acting in their interest and not his own financial self interest, or because he has been compromised by a foreign power.” The fear was that the Trump family was compromised or beholden to foreign interests. Those same fears exist with this scandal, and those same Democrats should support a full congressional investigation.

In the absence of a clear crime, it falls to Congress to investigate “suspicious activities” that could compromise a president or his administration. The Hunter Biden investigation may not warrant a special counsel — but the public deserves answers. The point of influence-peddling is to secure influence over powerful figures. The question is whether the Chinese, Ukrainians and other foreign actors got anything from their efforts.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. You can find his updates online @JonathanTurley.

379 thoughts on “The Case For and Against The Appointment Of A Special Counsel In The Hunter Biden Investigation”

  1. I think Congress should take a page out of the McConnell text on Duplicity. Nothing needs to be done here. The Democrats called for Trumps’ investigations because he was of a different party. This time, the party (Democrats) and the President (-Elect) are of the same party, so the same rules don’t apply.

    1. What has congress got to do with this ?
      SC’s are appointed by DOJ.

      We may need a better way to do that – that is an issue for Congress. But given the law as it is the decision belongs with DOJ.

    2. Are you making stuff up or are you so dumb you don’t know who appoints an SC, and don’t know which branch of government that person works within? McConnel has less than zero to do with appointing an SC.

  2. Statist Corporatist Regressive Biden is on a hot spot of his own making. Pelosi isn’t helping any and Mack the Knife Schumer just waiting to see how many backs he can stab. January 5th vote in Georgia is becoming VERY important as the left tries anything to keep the vote down for Constitutional Republic supporters and up for socialist regressives. A good viewpoint which the socialists refuse to acknowledge is the investigation conducted by released again in todays news. Not the propaganda kind the real kind. Here’s the lead in.

    “A rigorous study shows that illegal votes cast by non-citizens may have given Joe Biden enough fraudulent votes to reverse the lawful election results in key swing states.

    Furthermore, attempts to deny this reality consist of mathematically illiterate notions, half-truths, and outright falsehoods.”

    As for the military. It’s either a death trap for socialism or the Pentagon is serious about changing their uniform color to yellow and refusing to uphod their oath of office. If so….Go ahead and cut their pay. Why pay for those who turn their back on our Constitutional Republic? Which makes me wonder was it a real position turning their backs on Oath and Country or is it a trap?

  3. The Democrats have always viewed the Justice Department as their personal law firm, and sadly they’re right. Special Counsel or not, nothing will come of this.

    The only interesting question that matters is what will happen if the Democrats decide they want Joe to leave office before he is willing? Will the Democrats investigate him? Will they read him the 25th? Will he capitulate?

    Or will Joe triangulate with Republicans so that both can keep that radical hack out of the Oval Office?

    If Joe wants to keep triangulation as an option, he needs to slow walk or block Democrats on questions Trump supporters see as existential: free speech, court packing, statehood, the border, immigration, and not prosecuting Trump, probably in that order. If triangulation works, the GOP may want Joe to stick around for four years, not one or two.

    And think about it, Joe. It’s not just about you and Hunter. If the radicals get what they want, the GOP’s political options will be gone, AND if that happens, the radicals will drive this country to war. Texit is a thing. Imagine what New York and Illinois would look like if their red counties decide to split with the rest of us–by force if necessary. Does anyone really believe Kamala and Ilhan can hold this country together? Does anyone really believe Ilhan would care??

  4. (music to the tune of First Day of Christmas)
    On my first day in Russia…
    My true love said to me:
    These folks are Commies…they don’t have mommies.
    And Bidens in the pear tree!

  5. Turley is showing his true colors again, or he had a little bit to much special eggnog left over. Sadly, you can write any thing you want, and the Trump cult will believe it anyways. Nothing about the pardons Turley? Because there’s nothing to see there is it?

    1. If Joe has nothing to hide, he should welcome a thorough investigation. If the left has nothing to hide, the Dominion machines should all be analyzed.

      1. If Trump has nothing to hide, he should release his tax returns and provide the court-ordered DNA sample.

        The left doesn’t have control over the Dominion machines.

        1. Please, again with the tax returns. Is that seriouly the best you can do? If we are going to talk about tax returns, everyone in government should be required to submit them to public scrutiny every year.

          1. I wasn’t trying to do my best, only enough to demonstrate the hypocrisy of “If Joe has nothing to hide, he should welcome a thorough investigation.”

        2. Does not matter who has control of them. They have been proven to calculators and need to be fully examined. Why not?

          As the WP states “Democracy Dies in Darkness”

          Let’s let the sun in and see what gets illuminated.

          1. Whatever you mean by “They have been proven to calculators,” present your proof.

        3. “If Trump has nothing to hide, he should release his tax returns and provide the court-ordered DNA sample.”

          For the same reasons that few americans publish their tax returns or DNA.

          “The left doesn’t have control over the Dominion machines.”
          Please watch the GA legislative hearings. It is absolutely clear from those that election adjudicators using DVS systems can change votes as they please. So YES, they have control over DVS machines.

        4. What a dummy. The left through out the opposition from the counting rooms. In certain areas the left broke voting laws.

          You are a nut anonymous. Deal with the illegalities and recognize criminals if provided time can remove all the evidence and wipe everything down.

          Basic voting laws and processes were violated. Do you agree? Yes or no. No answer of value will be forthcoming from this low level poster. Go blame someone else for you stupid posts.

      2. The tremendous resistance to following the law and to examining the results has seriously undermined the legitimacy of government.

        JF’s 60 courts have done no one a favor.

  6. The pertinent question is why CommitToNearestInsaneAsylum and Joke Friedbrain were deployed by the American Communist Deep Deep State to support the 2020 election coup on the Turley blog; before, during and after the vast and pervasive election corruption and vote tampering.

    The American Communist Deep Deep State cannot concerned with its identity being revealed, creating an adverse American reaction, it is simply thorough.

    This campaign is not dissimilar to the extensive pre- and post-event control administered by the American Communist Deep Deep State after the JFK assassination, when the facts were rearranged (including the back of JFK’s head by Dr. James Humes), the truth spun and an endless parade of witnesses neutralized (recall Eisenhower’s military/industrial complex admonition a few days before JFK’s inauguration).

    It’s a truly scary and brave new world.

    “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.”

    – William Casey, CIA Director

    1. Let Christ’s love flow through you. Aim to follow Christ’s teachings. Learn from him.

  7. Dear Turley: your agenda is showing. One of your assignments, in addition to attacking mainstream media, is to try to keep the Hunter Biden “scandal” going–keep publishing things about it–all in an effort to create credibility. Hey, your brown nose buddy, Billy Barr, didn’t think a special counsel was indicated, so why won’t you let it drop? Do you have any evidence? If so, what is it? If not, shut up and stop trying to sabotage our new President. The majority of Americans voted for Biden, and we want him to succeed. It’s time for this country to heal from the disease known as “Trump”.

        1. Again hit and run cloaked in religion. I am not even responding to all of your replies. How many are there? Too many.

            1. Unending garbage from this poster who is not fit to be among others. I expect another comments from this fruitcake in the coming hours. He loves to blame others for his constant hit and run posts. I don’t bother to notify you of your posts that have content even though that content is of such low level.

    1. If you don’t like the food, go eat at a different restaurant.

      And if you’re going to continue eating at the same restaurant where you don’t like the food, do us all a favor and STFU.

      1. He hasn’t “served” a first term, which is why the American people voted his ass out of office.

        1. And how many of those voters were legitimate voters ?

          You do not know. Know one knows – because you conducted the election lawlessly.
          So you have no idea if Trump was actually voted out of office.

  8. Yes, Professor, The Mueller Probe Was Justified!

    The above column includes this presumptuous passage:

    “Previously, Democrats insisted that Trump’s public dismissal of the Russia investigation as a “hoax” supported the appointment of a special counsel”.

    There came a point, early in Trump’s presidency, where every member of Trump’s new cabinet acknowledged Russian meddling. Yet Trump dismissed the meddling as ‘fake news’. Which was ironic because the term ‘fake news’ was being applied to bogus newspapers that had sprung up on social media solely for the purpose of smearing Hillary Clinton.

    By refusing to address Russian meddling, Trump created a disconnect that no political observer had ever seen before. ‘A new president was denying a security threat that was being acknowledged by every official in government’. And here Turley pretends this disconnect was no reason for a Special Probe!

    Now, in the last month of his presidency, Trump is once again in denial. This time he claims his election defeat was the result of ‘massive fraud’. Trump has failed, in every court, to prove this claim, yet he is throwing a tantrum unlike any the country has seen by an outgoing president.

    Trump’s baseless election claims are precisely the actions of a Russian stooge. Trump has every intention of taking the country down with him. He knows damn well his claims could lead to civil violence. Still Trump plays with dynamite. One can be sure Trump has no intention of taking responsibility for whatever violence might result. It will be Biden’s fault, of course.

    One has to seriously wonder why a presumably earnest academic like Johnathan Turley continues to aide Trump’s baseless claims. Trump’s denial of the election results and recent Russian hacking confirms to any sane observer that Trump is the traitorous stooge we always suspected.

    1. Thanks for the moronic question-begging! As perspicacious observers recognized at the time, the “Russian meddling” thing was totally bogus. The notion that this fact is inconsistent with government officials’ believing (or pretending to believe) that the opposite is true is stupid.

    2. “…the term ‘fake news’ was being applied to bogus newspapers that had sprung up on social media solely for the purpose of smearing Hillary Clinton….”

      So you choose to defend the one and probably only US politician with lower approval rating that Donald Trump?

  9. “President Trump Set the Record for Most Votes for Any Sitting President In US History – Every Republican Should Be Outraged and Standing for Justice – Where Are They?”

    “This is the greatest crime in US history. President Trump set the record for the most votes of a sitting president in US history but the Democrats, most Republicans, Big Tech, Big Media, Big Pharma and China all continue to push for his removal and the Joe Biden steal.

    “Americans everywhere know who won the 2020 election for President. President Trump set the record for the most votes in US history. He accumulated over 74 million votes. He broke Obama’s record of 69 million from 2008. He broke Hillary’s vote total. He set the record for the most votes by a Republican in history. But the elites and Chinese and Democrats want us to believe senile Joe Biden beat President Trump with a preposterous 81 million votes?

    “Most honest people acknowledge that Biden probably didn’t reach Hillary’s vote total of 65. Biden was old, senile, and nasty with a horrible record, horrible Anti-American policies, and a dysfunctional family.”

    – Joe Hoft

    1. No, Georgie. Joe Biden got the most votes. And, you are correct–Americans, honest and dishonest ones, including Republicans, DO know who won–Joe Biden. And, you Trumpsters can keep insisting that all Americans know that Trump won in a landslide, but that doesn’t make it true. In fact, in swing states, down ballot Republicans won more votes than Trump, so cheating, ballot stuffing, and fraud, cannot explain that. You can call Biden “senile” all you want, but that doesn’t make it true. Just like Fox and other pro-Trump media can scream all day long that there was election fraud–that doesn’t make it true, either, as dozens of courts have held. But, the Fox/Trump experience, if nothing else, has taught us one thing, and that is, if you have enough people with an axe to grind (in this case, non college educated white resentment over the success of Barak Obama, as well as misogyny and xenophobia) and can tap into their insecurities, they’ll latch on to lies and defend them, despite all facts to the contrary.

      The reasons why honest Americans know that Trump lost the 2020 election include the fact that he lost popular vote in 2016, that he set a record for presidential disapproval, never capturing even 50% approval, that he single handedly destroyed the successful economy inherited from Barak Obama, and is a proven, habitual and pathological liar, especially about the pandemic, which has caused countless American deaths. Hey, George: are all of the hospitals, health departments and doctors lying when they report COVID cases setting new daily records? Your hero claimed, before the election, that America “turned a corner”. Is that the truth, or are the daily new records another lie to smear Trump? This is why so many people refuse to use the descriptor “President” in connection with his name. He is a fraud, a phony and con man. Always was, always will be, and he can’t go away soon enough.

        1. The votes have been certified in every state. The Electoral College has voted, and Biden’s victory makes him President-elect. The last step is Congress confirming the vote on Jan. 6.

          It’s out of your hands, John.

          1. John, did you demand a forensic audit when Trump won in 16? Do you demand a audit when Republicans held or won seats? I bet you were some of the first ones saying “suck it buttercup” or was it…..”F*ck your feelings” or “he won get over it”

          1. Without the electoral college you are going to have a civil war, and blue states are going to starve, and the lights will go out.

        2. Exactly!

          No evidence? Let the evidence that is out there be heard….and it is starting to be heard by millions of Americans.

      1. Natasha Natasha Natasha. Shame Shame Shame. The FAKE NEWs including you had access to the unredacted FISA warrant for Carter Page from March of 2017 and lied to the American public version since. You knew who the Russian source for the Steele dossiers, his relationships to all the people in the Trump impeachment. You know there was Zero predicate for the Muller investigation and the obstruction of justice claims are there fore moot as judge Sullivan.

        1. You need to stop trying to tell me what I know. Read the Mueller Report. The source was George Papadopoulos telling an Australian diplomat that Russia had dirt on Hillary Clinton. Read the vote count from 2016. Read the new daily COVID death and infection statistics.

          What you Trumpsters really need to do is stop watching Fox, NewsMax, OAN and other pro-Trump media and get behind our new POTUS, Biden, and help him get us past our current pandemic and economic crises.

          1. “…and get behind our new POTUS Biden…”

            Ha! You mean the way the Democrats did as they boycotted Trump’s inauguration, and resisted, sabotaged, investigated, lied, and smeared Trump, his family, and his supporters for the past four years?

            You reap what you sow. Joe Biden is no “healer” of the “soul of the nation” just because in his addled, cloudy, mixed up, senile mind he arrogantly THINKS that is a real thing he can do. It don’t work that way Joe, not when you steal and cheat to “win” a fraudulent election. Not when you continue to lie, smear, belittle and insult more than half the country. Not when you continue to dismissively, arrogantly laugh at a serious question by a serious journalist who dares to ask it, and call him a “one horse pony.” Joe’s brain is all mixed up. He is the LAST thing this country needs at the helm. No one should fee “safe” under a Biden presidency. We are in for a rocky ride as a country. Buckle up old Joe.

            1. “No one should feel “safe” under a Biden presidency.”

              The world was more peaceful, more prosperous and more stable under four years of President Trump. This will not be true under a corrupt Biden administration.

          2. Papadopoulos was “the source” OF WHAt?

            Why would he be investigated for saying something, while those who repeated it were not? It’s logically impossible that that could be the basis for an investigation? The FBI didn’t investigate Downer, so the papadopoulos thing had to be prefectural.

            1. Nor did the FBI investigate those who purportedly provided Papadoulis with the information.

              Further recent strzok texts confirm the investigation started before the FBI was aware of Papadoulis’s remarks.

              So the claim that papadoulis’s remarks were the justification is false.

      2. “that he single handedly destroyed the successful economy inherited from Barak Obama”

        Does that explain why Barack Obama had the single greatest number of blacks and other Americans on food stamps with record high unemployment across the board? No one was thriving under a Barack Obama stagnant economy. History (if we have any honest historians left) will show that, other than being the first half black man elected to the White House, Barack Obama’s presidency was by and large a failure by most standards.

        History will also show that Donald Trump was the most successful and most accomplished first term president, by far.

        By the way, Joe Biden is a proven, habitual liar. Biden is well known, over decades, to be a serial, pathological liar. He could not stop lying which is why his presidential campaign imploded back in the 80s: because of Joe Biden’s habit of lying. Biden has not changed, despite what the media keeps telling you.

        Joe Biden will never be accepted as a legitimate president, nor should he be.

        1. Demonkraps would sooner line up, shoot and kill blacks and brown people rather than let them leave the Demonkrap Plantation.

          Proof: I dare any Biden-supporting poster here to answer the Q following this statement of fact: Kaiser Health states that 40% of US abortions are of unborn blacks. Q: is that 40% abortion ratio the right ratio, too high, or too low?

  10. The real issue is not influence-peddling, but rather that the senile old man recently elected president took bribes from Ukraine. Ukrainian officials say he did. Pelosi and Schiff impeached Trump for the allegedly doing what Biden has admitted to doing, and in Biden’s case it involved his own son. Yes, there needs to be a special counsel investigation.

    1. semcgowanjr, explain how Trump lost to a “senile old man”.

      Such an explanation would require intellectual gymnastics that semcgownjr is unlikely to be capable of.

      1. Trump did not ‘lose’ to a senile old man. Build a model of the White House on one of Joe’s many million dollar properties and put Joe in there and he will never know that he is not really the president.

        1. Estovir, we’re supposed to believe that Biden is wealthier than Trump?? Perhaps Biden is, but you’re the first to tell us that.

  11. First Clinton and then Obama Administration remnants pursue the false Russia disinformation claims along with their proxies such as Adam Schiff. Now the Bidens are pursuing it. What Russia was doing during the Trump administration was done during the the Obama Administration. There has been no change. The only difference is it seems the Biden family has been making money off of Biden’s status as VP and Russia is one of those countries. Notably China and Ukraine are two others. The Bidens continue to say that Hunter’s computer is Russian disinformation. This tells us that from Clinton to the Biden’s a singular excuse is being used and that excuse surely has to fall. The left will remain blind to the failure.

    1. The Biden family has been making money off of Biden’s status as Vice President, the Trump family has been making money off of Trump’s status as President, and the families of others in Washington with power have been making money off of their roles as members of Congress, members of the Cabinet, etc.

      If you think it should be illegal, encourage your Rep. and Senators to pass a law making it illegal.

      1. Many people who are part of the inside-the-beltway crowd seem to know how this system of payoffs to family members works. There are the lobbyists who also facilitate such arrangements, and the campaign contributors and foreign actors. Those of us outside the beltway? We’re starting to get it… but it’s difficult. This should be a multi-partisan issue. Does any party want the others to behave like this? Clearly ethics committees don’t work, or half of Congress would booted. The FEC rules and enforcement actions also don’t seem to matter. During the investigation(s) over the last four years, the actions of politicians, federal employees, political appointees, judges… just seemed so wrong regardless of political affiliation. We often heard what appeared to be appalling behavior, including lying (“less than candid”) described by those like Prof. Turley who know of these practices and the existing laws as “not criminal acts”.

        As Prof. Turley wrote above: “The biggest issue is that influence-peddling is legal. It is the favorite form of corruption in Washington. While you cannot give a politician like Biden an envelope of money, you can give his son or other relatives millions in dubious contracts, gifts and loans.”

        So, he also writes: “In the absence of a clear crime, it falls to Congress to investigate “suspicious activities” that could compromise a president or his administration.” I have no doubt, Prof. Turley that your legal interpretation is correct, and apolitical. However, for your readers who HATE this kind of corruption by any such actor is, your answer gives only a sense of futility. Clearly no one who benefits from this behavior is going to change the rules. This response is not in any way inspiring or empowering.

        So, knowing how the system actually works, will you please begin providing some ideas for how we can help effect change? Now with a lack of certainty that all our votes are fairly counted, we really don’t even know the extent to which past elections for all kinds of officials were free and fair or not. Please, we really need you to give us something this year! Otherwise this kind of discourse about which party’s corruption is less bad than that of the other party will never end.

      2. The Biden Family has made money off of influence peddling. Of course that needs to be investigated and proven in court before one can make that into a definitive statement. It is worth investigating and worth it to see if any of our security was compromised which has been claimed.

        Did Trump make money off of some of his decisions made in the interests of the nation? Probably even though it appears he lost many multiples more by bing President. How could he have made money? The stock market went up, but that is not influence peddling.

        Do you have some other suggestions or are you just trying to make a nuisance of yourself?

        1. The Trump Family made money off of influence peddling via their properties. If you want to read about it, just google Trump Family influence peddling and take your pick of sources.

          1. I am discussing this with you not some 25 year old know nothing. I want to hear directly from the source’s mouth. Anyone can make claims but only a few of us can provide logical reasons behind them.

            You are hiding behind someone else’s claim to authority. That is a failure of logic.

              1. You are not even a good source because frequently what you link to disproves what you are saying. You have a significant reading comprehension problem along with a base of facts that is superficial and inadequate.

                I think that pretty much describes your existence.

          2. “The Trump Family made money off of influence peddling via their properties. If you want to read about it, just google Trump Family influence peddling and take your pick of sources.”

            And apple made their money off of influence peddling through their phones, and amazon via influence peddling via their books and movies.

            Grow up – it is called the free market. People prosper by meeting the needs of others – that is how it works.
            It is entirely voluntary – no one is required to buy a Trump property, or to Sell to Trump. No one is required to buy an iphone or rent movies from amazon.

            But when government interacts with you – it is not a request, it is a demand.

        2. “The Biden Family has made money off of influence peddling. Of course that needs to be investigated and proven in court before one can make that into a definitive statement. It is worth investigating and worth it to see if any of our security was compromised which has been claimed.”

          It is necessary to prove in court to convict. It is not necessary to meet the same standard to accept.

    2. Allan, in case you haven’t noticed, our Intel agencies have been uncovering a massive Russian hack of government computer systems that occurred entirely with the Trump years.

      In fact, the full extent of this hack is not yet completely known. It could be weeks, or months, before we determine the full scope of this hack. By then Trump will be facing tax charges in New York.

      1. Is this guy/gal for real. He doesn’t seem able to separate ideas. The Russians have always done these things (as have we). The Clinton, Obama Biden, Hunter Biden Russian disinformation scheme is a hoax to fool people that like to talk but know very little. I think you fill the bill.

        “By then Trump will be facing tax charges in New York.”

        Can you tell us what their claim is that the IRS hasn’t discovered. Of course not. More talk with little knowledge.

        1. If you truly want to know what they’re investigating in his taxes, you should read what the New York Attorney General James and Manhattan D.A. Vance have said about it, instead of asking “Can you tell us what their claim is that the IRS hasn’t discovered” and then assuming “Of course not.”

          They subpoenaed Trump’s personal and business tax returns in at least two investigations, one of Trump’s reimbursement of Michael Cohen for paying off Stormy Daniels and whether any any business financial records were falsified, and another of whether Trump improperly inflated the value of four properties to obtain tax benefits and better terms on bank loans. The IRS doesn’t investigate state tax issues.

          1. “Trump improperly inflated the value of four properties to obtain tax benefits”

            How did inflating the value of four properties increase his tax benefits? That sounds backas$ed but then I am dealing with one that seldom grasps the significance of anything more complex than water flowing downhill.

              1. Green Anonymous, You talked about tax benefits. I am glad you realize you made a fool of yourself.

                Loan terms are different than tax benefits. Banks and other entities have specialists that determine what a property is worth. There are too many ways to assess property values. Whatever happened, in that article you were unable to understand, two competent parties agreed on a value. That is not criminal.

                You need to learn that when two parties, a buyer and a seller make a deal, it generally means both think they are getting more than the value they exchanged. That means the pie grew bigger.

                People are upset because they are looking for something and can’t find it. You give a citation because you can’t figure out the crime either.

                Are you turning red yet?

                1. Allan, you again resort to some of your go-to trolling strategies: insults, pretending to read someone’s mind, attributing your own failings to others.

                  Whether it is criminal will be determined in court, not by you or me.

                  1. I challenge you to PROVE there was a “massive hack”. You have nothing but hearsay from reprobate liars.

                    1. Why are you challenging me to prove something I didn’t say? Challenge the person who said it.

                  2. Let’s examine closely one thing that you said:

                    “Trump improperly inflated the value of four properties to obtain tax benefits”

                    Inflating of property values would increase the taxes on the property. You are too busy trying to figure out who that “Alan” is and not spending time trying to garner facts. You don’t even have the basics down.

                    You read an article and one sentence looks bad for Trump so you copy the sentence even though the rest of the paragraph proves you wrong.

                    Your links are junk and you can’t comprehend what you read. It seems a lot of people are noting the lack of character you demonstrate. My name is Mark but you can be impolite and refer to me by whatever name you wish.

                    1. Allan, purposefully misspelling your name doesn’t fool anyone, and if you’d bothered to understand the article, you’d know that Trump got a tax break as part of a conservation easement on one of the properties, after he promised to preserve more than 150 acres of woodlands on the property, and he is accused of purposefully inflating the value of the property to get a larger tax break for the preserved woodlands.

                      You also keep cutting off the second half of the sentence in order to ignore that with the other properties he is accused of inflating their values to obtain better terms on bank loans.

                      I don’t have to spend much energy at all figuring out when it’s you posting under a new sock account, as your verbal and behavioral tics give you away most of the time, no matter what name you choose.

                    2. “Allan, purposefully misspelling your name ”

                      Anonymous. I’m not Allan or Alan. My alias is Mark but in reality I go by a different name. Anonymous aliases spell the name Alan and Allan differently but I guess you are too dumb to realize that. You seem to call everyone Alan or Allan. I’m not sure if you change the spelling or two different anonymous figures spell it differently. Maybe you both spell it wrong and it is Allen. I don’t know because you are a bit looney and so are a bunch of other anonymous aliases. You in particular seem a little more looney than the rest, being so attached to an Allan/Alan you don’t even know. Whomever he is he has really screwed you up because you sound like a basket case. You dream about him and think about him continuously.

                      Congratulations Allan/ Alan and all the other aliases anonymous has called Allan/ Alan.

                      We should all have a drink at the expense of anonymous the blog’s clown what at home is known as the village idiot.

                    3. “you’d know that Trump got a tax break as part of a conservation easement on one of the properties,”

                      Anonymous, you are an idiot. This is one of the most common things that occur with developers. They are given tax breaks in exchange for something the government wants. In a way government is frequently extorting the developer for money it doesn’t get in taxes. The developer considers it a business expense and passes the costs to the consumer in lieu of the consumer getting a tax increase.

                      The valuation of the property or the exchange is one that benefits both parties. If you wish to believe there is criminality involved then look to those in government that accepted the deal. The businessman is going to make the deal recognizing the price may be higher or lower or walk away. The government official gets to know things he can illegally profit off of. That may be why the deal is made in the first place.

                      You must be one of the most ignorant bloggers I have ever talked to. You have absolutely no knowledge of the world around you.

                    4. “he is accused of purposefully inflating the value of the property to get a larger tax break ”

                      Anonymous, if that is the claim then government is dumber than most of us believe and you are dumber than government. Are you so dumb that you think government doesn’t have property assessors on the payroll or can’t hire them? Where are your brains? Don’t tell us because it is already obvious that your head and butt are reversed.

                    5. “You also keep cutting off the second half of the sentence in order to ignore that with the other properties he is accused of inflating their values to obtain better terms on bank loans.”

                      Another dumb statement by anonymous. Do you think banks don’t appraise the property? By the way people ask for as much money as they can get. People buy a piece of property based on how much money a person can make off of it. That leads to a wide variation. Banks look at the property and the borrower. Then they assess risk and determine what and how they will charge for the loan. With expensive property they use property appraisers and sometimes more than one.

                      I can’t believe an adult knows so little and talks so much. Does everyone else realize how dumb this anonymous is? I bet that will lead to a bunch of dumb anonymous figures answering the question.

                    6. “I don’t have to spend much energy at all figuring out when it’s you posting under a new sock account, as your verbal and behavioral tics give you away most of the time, no matter what name you choose.”

                      Anonymous, you spend your time trying to figure out who is Allan/Alan and who is not. You have no time to learn anything and that is demonstrated by the garbage you post. Who I am is not as important as what I say. You cannot deal with what Allan/ Alan says so you complain about anyone else who is educated and makes the same arguments that can be seen in any elementary textbook on economics and politics. There is a limit to the number of words commonly used so words and attitudes will be demonstrated over and over again whether it be by one person or many persons.

                      May name is Mark. I have read what you have said to others and what you have said has prompted me to speak. I had plenty of time to learn because I don’t post a lot or get into a lot of arguments. You can call me what you want and if you prefer I can change the name to Alan/ Allan while my icon remains the same. However , that will not help your problem because my name change will leavesyou as dumb as you presently are.

                    7. Banks do due dilligence on all comercial property loans.

                      They NEVER take the word of owners regarding the value of their properties.

                      I own a business that provides ONE part of that due dilligence process – when a commercial property is bought, sold, or refinanced, the banks require: An environmental site assessment to determine if there are hidden environmental issues that could result in a future unforeseen cost. A Property Condition Assessor – to determine the current condition of the property and the estimated future maintance costs, And at least one independent appraiser – as well as the banks own inhouse appraiser.

                      I would further as you Why government has anything to do with this ?

                      Whatever value Trump placed on his properties and whatever loans Banks granted as a consequence are a contract matter – they do not become criminal unless one party to the contract has been defrauded. Banks as an example can call for immediate repayment of a mortgage is substantial misrepresentations are made on the application. If A Bank beleives Trump misrepresented property values – they can demand immediate repayment of the loan.

                      Put simply these allegations of criminality are being made by idiots who have no idea how taxes, insurance, or loans are issued.
                      That some of these are actually State Attorney Generals is really really disturbing – they are either incredibly stupid or incredibly corrupt.

                      When you find a bank or insurance company that is claiming that the Trump’s defrauded them – then and only then, is there any possibility of anything to look into.

                      Your oppions or those of a State AG regarding property values are meaningless.

                    8. Allan, I don’t call anyone Alan, and the only accounts I respond to as Allan are new accounts with comments that sound like you. Mark N is one of your socks. Your very first comment on this blog using your Mark N. sock was a response a couple of weeks ago to a comment I’d made to Allan.

                      Here’s a page with multiple examples of comments from Allan –
                      You’ve posted thousands of comments on JT’s columns under that name, so if you want more examples, it will be easy for you to find them.

                      I don’t dream about you at all, and your desire to believe that I do only reflects your ego.

                    9. It’s convenient that your link didn’t take anyone to the comment you said I made. With extra time on my hands I started to post to a few people that were dealing with myth not reality. I guess that was bound to lead to you. If I remember correctly I didn’t bother dealing with your craziness because I wanted to stay as far away from you as possible.

                      Instead I responded to a greenish Anonymous who to this date I thought was different from you and then the green dropped and I din’t know which one you were. You are both. You are the moronic insulting one that adds no content and the other anonymous is the moronic one that only occasionally insults.

                      Call me Allan or whatever you wish. It doesn’t make a difference because between your green label and your usual label you are a weirdo or as my partner would say, a nutter.

                      You knew nothing about what you commented on.

                2. All these claims by left wing nuts are such stupid nonsense.

                  One of my businesses is Due Dilligence. That is part of the process by which banks evaluate commercial properties that they are writing loans for.

                  When a property with a value over a million dollars is financed by a bank there is:
                  A professional appraisal done by an independent certified apraisor that is assigned at random from an approved list. Often for higher values properties there are multiple appraisors. Frequently the Bank send their own inhouse appraisor in addition to the required independent appraisor. there is usually an environmental assessor – to determine if there are undiscovered environmental problems at the property. An engineer or architect conducts a property condition assessment to verify that the property is in the condition the owner claims and what its state of maintanence is, and what the anticipated costs to maintain the property for the life of the loan is. Sometimes multiple PCA’s are done – one by the bank and one by the buyer. Just about every party to this process is independent of the buyer, the sellor and the bank. Most are licensed professionals. These are people who will be sued for a great deal of money if their assessment is incorrect. Further the income and expenses of commercial properties are verified – rent rolls checked, vacancy rates checked.

                  The above is just part of the process of buying/selling a commercial property.

                  Much of the above also occurs when you insure a commercial property.

                  Only an idiot beleives that a Billionare can go to a bank ask for a mortgage on a high value property and have the bank just accept the owners claim as to the value of a property.

                  1. “Only an idiot beleives that a Billionare can go to a bank ask for a mortgage on a high value property and have the bank just accept the owners claim as to the value of a property.

                    There are quite a few on this blog and most of them have no names. It seems one at least two of the worst are posting above.

                  2. I did not follow that conversation but I saw this one little thing which caught my eye

                    “only and idiot” believes that banks don’t give out weak loans to favored customers.

                    and as for accepting bogus valuations, hello John, did you live through the 2008 mortgage debacle? or were you asleep?

                    bank employees that get paid and incentivized to make loans, will use whatever criteria will pass their bosses’ screens, and make as many loans as they can, to whomever will pass the screens, with whatever bogus valuations will suffice

                    also, when it comes to high net worth individuals, they bypass the normal lending routines entirely

                    high net individuals who are also insiders, get even better deals. surely you are aware of that?

                    Saloth Sar

                    1. Yes, I did live through the 2008 mortgage debacle.

                      Commercial loans were not involved at all – in fact there was absolutely no problem in comercial or even prime mortages.

                      The problem was entirely confined to sub prime and alt-a mortgages – mortgage that banks were required to accept by federal laws that specifically vitiated the banks normal due dilligence because it was purportedly racist.

                      Further your facts are inaccurate. Bank employees do not get inventives to write loans.
                      The subprime crisis was not caused by mortgages written by banks.
                      It was mortgages written by third party mortgage brokers who do not underwrite the loans and are therefore incentivized to write as many loans as possible – regardless of the credit of those getting the loans.

                      The mistake the banks made was buying the loans back after they were securitized.
                      The banks did not do due dilligence when they bought securitized loans back – they could not. Securitization pools large numbers of loans and then sells shares in that bundle of mortgages. The bundles were prequalified according to the quality of the loans in the bundles. The 2008 failure was entirely a failure of low quality – sub prime and alt-A bundles.

                    2. No high net worth individuals etc do not bypass the normal processes.

                      August a year ago I traveled to TX to do PCA’s on 50 warehouses, that were part of a bundle of 3500 warehouses accross the country that were being refinanced. The net value of the deal was over 80B, and the net value of the company refinancing was several times larger than that. These are people with 1000 times more clout than Trump.

                      And every one of 3500 warehouses had a full independent due dilligence run on it.

                      As of Yet I have not done a Trump property – but I have done Hilton’s and Marriots, and Hyatt’s.
                      I have done very high value properties on Central Park.
                      I have done 1.6M square ft warehouses.

                      Right now I am incredibly busy – because hotels resturaunts and rental properties are going bankrupt all over – and if they are being sold or taken over by banks due dilligence is being done.

                      I did a 100+ room hotel a week ago that had 2 guests.

                    3. Those with excellent credit and a track record of success do get oportunities the rest of us do not.

                      Who would you bet on – the horse that has won everyone of the past 10 major races, or one that has never raced before ?

                      All of us – not just high value individuals get better opportunities as we succeed and worse as we fail.

                      That is because if you have a track record for fiscal integrity and success ever more people will trust and work with you.

                      It is not a problem and you will never be able to change it.

            1. This is complete leftist idiocy.

              Those on the left take anything that happens and jump straight to some idiotic and contradictory conclusion.

              “Trump lead with his right foot – therefore he must be a sociopath”.

              None of them has a clue what they are talking about.

              Banks do not loan billions to people in sweet heart deals – unless they expect to get their money back and more.

              Absolutely Trump organizes his affairs to minimize taxes and maximize profits – that is not merely legal, but according to Judge Learned Hand a civic duty.

              There is no such thing as an inflated value. The actual value of anything is what a willing buyer and a willing sellor agree to.
              There is no other meaningful value for anything.

      2. The “massive hack” thing is a transparently bogus fake-news talking point. Where’s the harm? No EVIDENT harm means no “massive” hack.

    3. Both the Mueller Report and the Senate Report confirmed the bulk of the 2016 Russian “hoax” to be true. The only part not confirmed is that extent that the Trump campaign actively sought out Russian assistance.

      1. “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.”

        – William Casey, CIA Director

            1. LMAO that you consider them all to be Never Trumpers, when not a single one of them voted in favor of removing Trump in his impeachment trial. They could have had Pence as President.

      2. You need to provide examples of what the accusation was prior to the SC appointment and what the Mueller Report confirmed with evidence. That would start with what event launched the SC.

        Facts are a tricky thing.

        1. Iowan, facts suggest that Trump’s pardons of Manafort and Stone are a blatant attempt to whitewash the Mueller Probe.

        2. The Trump campaign meeting with and providing internal polling data to Russian agents. That alone would be enough to open an investigation.

  12. Is Prof. Turley aware of Hunter Biden’s complaint in an email to his daughter that Joe demands half his salary? Why isn’t bribery at one remove analogous to straw donation, Dinesh D’Souza’s severely-punished felony? D’Souza donated the max of $10,000 to a political campaign and then gave two friends $10,000 each to donate to the same campaign. The Bidens’ straw-man bribery setup just has more zeroes in the numbers.

    Hunter Biden: “I love you all but I don’t receive any respect and that’s fine I guess. Works for you apparently. I hope you all can do what I did, and pay for everything for this entire family for 30 years. It’s really hard but don’t worry, unlike Pop, I won’t make you give me half your salary.”

    1. Has anyone proved that Giuliani’s screenshot of that text from Hunter to his daughter is real?

  13. Prof. Turley, you tweeted “I have been writing for two years about Manafort’s obvious pardon strategy. It just paid off. However, Manafort ranks as one of the least compelling candidates for pardon. He makes Marc Rich look like a pious, repentant petitioner. Manafort was convicted of crimes unrelated to the Russian investigation after a life of criminal, conspicuous consumption. He joins others on a virtual rogue’s gallery of corrupt Beltway figures on the pardon list.
    “The pardoning of Jared Kushner’s father is equally objectionable. Charles Kushner was convicted of preparing false tax returns, witness retaliation, and making false statements to the Federal Election Commission. Kushner’s pardon was the triumph of familial over legal criteria. Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie described Charles Kushner as responsible for “one of the most loathsome, disgusting crimes” that prosecuted in his career. This is akin to the pardon given by Bill Clinton in his half-brother in the final days of his administration.”
    Even worse were Trump’s pardons for the Blackwater war criminals.

    Politico reporter Kyle Cheney notes that “The [bipartisan] Senate Intelligence Committee [report] described Manafort – who was serving a sentence for financial crimes — as a direct conduit for Russian influence into the Trump campaign. … Trump’s dangling of a pardon to Manafort was part of the evidence of potential obstruction of justice that Mueller laid out in his report.”

    NYU Law professor Ryan Goodman says “Based on reading the parts of the Mueller report on Manafort many times… I do think that this pardon now significantly amplifies Donald J. Trump’s criminal exposure for obstruction of justice.”
    Recall that Manafort told Gates “Sit tight” “we’ll be taken care of.”

    On January 21, Manafort, Stone, Flynn, and Papadopoulos can all be subpoenaed to testify before a grand jury. They can be immunized, and if they lie to the grand jury about what they’ve covered up for Trump, their pardons won’t help them, as perjury would be a new crime, not covered by the pardons.

    Are you going to write a column about Trump’s pardons of corrupt Beltway figures (and those linked to corrupt Beltway figures, as with the Blackwater war criminals, employed by Erik Prince, Betsy Devos’s brother)?

    As for Joe Biden, he should nominate a very ethical A.G. (which he should do regardless) and then avoid following in Trump’s attempting-to-influence-prosecutions footsteps.

    Hunter Biden should be indicted if there’s evidence to convince a grand jury that he’s committed a crime. Congress should pass a law making it clear that the OLC’s opinion is wrong and a sitting president can be indicted, with the statute of limitations tolled until the person is voted out or impeached and removed. If there’s evidence to convince a grand jury that Joe Biden or Trump or his family have committed crimes, they should be indicted. No one should above the law. If Trump attempts to pardon himself, the legality of that must be tested in court.

    1. “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.”

      – William Casey, CIA Director

    2. Does it HURT to be as stupid and ignorant as you? You either forget or ignore a certain ex-SOS/ex-POTUS candidate and her half dozen personal lawyers/advisors/assistants, charged with felony email crimes, who, when asked dozens of Qs as you posit above, replied: “I DON’T REMEMBER.”

      Tell readers now exactly how such replies do not make any/all charges against Trump disappear exactly as per that lying felonious scum of the earth Hillary Clinton.

      The DOJ granted immunity to Hillary’s advisors, something they never do unless those advisors provide evidence against the bigger fish Hillary, except in this case, because as someone posted above, the DNC views the DOJ as their own personal legal foundation.

      Any independent who needs proof need only view this fantastic 40 minute video showing Obama’s AG Eric Holder was a felon working in concert with Goldman Sachs to insure the bank got away with their felonious bank crimes that caused the 2008 financial meltdown:

      If Trump committed a crime he should pay.

    3. Trump is scum for pardoning those Blackwater murderers. Those felons should be dead already.

  14. In the end Hunter will be considered a success of drug rehabilitation. Any crimes that may have occurred will be wiped away. If things get too hot in the kitchen Biden will be replaced by Harris not because of anything in the past but because a story will be created that the great Democrat Savior Biden suddenly was physically or mentally unable to continue as President. The Democrat legend will say Biden resigned out of greatness and they will start bowing to him as the new George Washington who had such respect for the Presidency that he refused to run for a third term.

    1. They can push the Kamala-historic-figure-VP all they want, but the fact remains: Kamala is unlikeable. Kamala’s husband is unlikeable. The two of them together? Good lord, her handlers have their work cut out for them. Bottom line? A “president” Kamala ain’t gonna fly in flyover country.

      1. Trump is unlikeable. Melania is unlikeable. Pence and his wife are unlikeable. That didn’t stop them from being Pres. and VP and spouses.

        1. Trump is indeed unlikable as hell. But to compare Trump’s unlikability with Kamala’s 2% approval when she dropped out is pure lie, idiocy or both.

      2. When that byatch Kamala dropped out of the race she had amassed a grand total of 2% of the vote, and blamed her 98% failure (yes, you read that right NINETY EIGHT PERCENT FAILURE RATE) on “sexism.” Kamala is dumber than dirt, another reason she lost. She did not consider the fact that she was accusing DNC voters of being sexist.

        Hey Demonkraps: why are you a member of a “sexist” political party as described by your soon to be POTUS?

  15. Mr. Justice, you must have your OPTIC nerve crossed with sphincter thus your dumbassed post about the Trumps. Yes, there are FACTS stated by their business partner that defeat the ‘I know nothing’ defense of by the Dem Stooge Joe Biden, James Biden, and the rest of that crime family. Trump took NO SALARY for being President instead, it was all donated to various charities. I dare Joe Biden to do the same!
    Please don’t engage me with your reply because I don’t engage with moronic idiots. EVER.

    1. Trump transferred a great deal of money from the U.S. Treasury to the Trump Organization via his frequent trips to Trump properties and by having other federal officers (like Pence and Barr) stay at them. David Fahrenthold of the Washington Post has written a lot about this.

      It would have been better for Trump to keep his salary and refuse any other government funds.

      There is a reason that the Founders wanted the President to be well-paid: to help him avoid the temptation of potential corruption and to help him remember that he is a public servant to the citizens who pay his salary and he should serve them with integrity.

        1. It’s relevant to delmaracer’s claim that “Trump took NO SALARY for being President instead, it was all donated to various charities. I dare Joe Biden to do the same!”

          We shouldn’t be daring any president to donate their salary. It’s there for a reason. If anything, we should dare presidents not to make any money during their presidency except through their salary and money invested in an index fund (as the public at large benefits if index funds do well). Presidents should not be taking actions like Trump did to personally benefit himself financially.

          1. We shouldn’t dare any president? That shows just how really stupid you are.
            I dare you to get smart!

          2. “Presidents should not be taking actions like Trump did to personally benefit himself financially.”

            I didn’t know Trump acted to personally benefit himself. I intermittently keep hearing that but I never hear of significant financial benefits to Trump based on his being President. One can make a claim that some laws passed that he signed may or may not have benefitted him but he didn’t write those laws and those laws were passed by Congress. The nation as a whole has benefited from that type of action so his benefit is not the reason for the law to be passed.

            I think a lot of people are looking for things that do not exist. By the way, from what I have read his being President has caused him to lose a lot of money.

            1. That is probably true. I think Trump has been one of our most honest Presidents whether it be fulfilling campaign promises or not attempting to financially benefit . He governs for what he believes is best for most Americans now and in the future. We will be losing a great President.

              I keep looking where he benefited based on using his powers for himself rather than the nation.

                  1. If you were looking for “where he benefited based on using his powers for himself rather than the nation,” then when you “looked at the President’s results,” did you look at his results for himself?

                    Look at who benefits more from the pardons he chose to give, him or the nation? Look at his choice not to sign the NDAA and the COVID/omnibus bills, who benefits more from that, him or the nation? Look at his choice to install incompetent supporters with conflicts of interest like Postmaster General Dejoy and DNI Ratcliffe, who benefits more from that, him or the nation? Look at his hundreds of visits to his own properties during his presidency, which all cost the taxpayer and all benefit him financially, who benefits more from that, him or the nation? Etc.

                    Maybe you’re not seeing it because you’re not looking in the right places.

                    1. Why do you think Trump personally benefited from the Pardon’s he granted ?

                      What evidence do you have ?

                      We know that Clinton got large camapign contributions.

                      But how is it you claim Trump personally benefited ?

                      Same with the omibus and NDAA.

                      Both are disasterous.

                      I have been critical of Trump from the start for being a spendthrift.
                      He has finally gotten some balls and stopped some of this nonsense.

                      Hopefully he will stick to it.
                      Let Biden sign these “porkulouses”.

                      I do not care if the government stays shutdown until Jan. 20.

                      Get people vaccinated and end this mess. Cut the BS about flooding the country with more cash.
                      Unless people get back to work and produce value the amount of money is irrelevant.

                      And I do not care if Defense Spending get cut 100% – unfortunately Trump is not after that.

                    2. I have no problems with changing the law regarding the way the presidents security is handled.

                      But so long as the law is as it is, your claims regarding Trump are nonsense.

                      We elect a president not a slave. He can go wherever he wants.

                    3. Trump benefited from the pardons of Manafort and Stone who were active in a conspiracy with the him to obstruct justice. He beter get a pardon himself and most safe way is to resign and have Pence give it.

                    4. How so ? You think Manafort surrended more than 10M dollars, and more than a year in prison to cover up for someone that he worked for for 6 weeks without pay in the hope of getting a pardon ?

                      And Stone had his life turned upside down, had to face a swat team at 5am. and a grueling and lawless trial – all because Stone hoped he would get a pardon from Trump ? Again for someone he never actually worked for ?

                    5. So what is it that you think Stone could tell of this conspiracy ?

                      We already know that Stone had no actual foreknowledge of anything. That his only contact with Wikileaks was after the fact and through Randy Credico.

                      So what is this hypothetical conspiracy that Stone was going to be able to expose ?

                      And Manafort worked for Trump for 6 weeks – are you saying that during those 6 weeks he managed the entire Russian Collusion OP and no one but him and Trump know the secret sauce ? And that he did not screw Trump over when Trump fired him ?

                      Besides why do you fire the guy who knows the secret sauce ?

                      Does logic or facts have any place in your world ?

                    6. “Look at who benefits more from the pardons he chose to give, him or the nation?”

                      How did the pardons benefit him? Was he paid off? No, but it appears the Clintons likely were. Maybe the Obama’s were as well.

                      Why do you list things when you can’t provide any evidence for your contention.

                      “Look at his choice not to sign the NDAA and the COVID/omnibus bills, who benefits more from that, him or the nation?”

                      You didn’t bother to think about the bills themselves. Prove the bills benefited the President and prove the bills weren’t written to satisfy Democrat needs (Republican as well) The bills are supposed to satisfy the needs of the American public both short and long term. You pick things out of a hat but you have no idea of what you are talking about.

                      A while ago you balked about Trump’s choices regarding foreign policy yet it wasn’t Trump who made money from Russia. It was Clinton and Biden. It wasn’t Trump who made money off of China. It was Biden. Neither Clinton or Obama Biden provided a solution in the mid east. It was Trump.

                      It’s useless to deal with your lists because without your explanation and proof this idea of lists is juvenile. Perhaps you should go back to trading baseball cards.

                      I wait for you to focus on individual items based on knowledge and proof. Not items based on ignorance.

                    7. Barb, if you don’t understand that Trump benefitted from Manafort, Flynn, Stone, Papadopoulos and VDZ keeping their mouths shut instead of fully cooperating, you must not want to understand. Manafort even told Gates that if they didn’t cooperate, Trump and his lawyers would “take care of us.” It certainly doesn’t benefit the country.

                    8. Logic failures all over the place. You assume these individuals kept something secret when it is already known it was the FBI that was keeping things secret. There was no guarantee they would be pardoned. They are all innocent as far as crimes involving Trump and it was that involvement that prompted prosecutions that weren’t warranted. That is why he pardoned all of them.

                      You are a waste of time for everybody.

                    9. Most of the prosecutions were absolutely bogus to begin with.

                      Most of the charges against Manafort are lessor versions of the conduct of Hunter Biden – neither are actually criminal.

                      All conduct we do not like is not a crime

                    10. You appear to be an idiot.

                      For Trump to benefit from the alleged silence of these people – they would have to have something to say.

                      They do not. Micheal Cohne has not been pardoned – he has pretty much admitted he would say anything he could get away with to get a deal, but he ultimately refused to lie – not because he liked Trump, not because he was offered a pardon, but because there was nothing he could say that would make Mueller or the House happy that was not false.

                      Your allegation relies on the beleif that all these people are privy to a secret that has no evidence and no one was able to find out – not Mueller, not XFH, not the house or senate, and not every news team in the world.

                      That these people kept this secret – on the off chance of a pardon, facing certain jail otherwise and in most instances with an offer of immunity from Mueller if they just revealed this alleged evidence free secret.

          3. “the public at large benefits if index funds do well”

            Where did you hear that falsehood?

            “Presidents should not be taking actions like Trump did to personally benefit himself financially.”

            You are expecting Biden or Harris to change that reality?!

            Stick to cutting and pasting articles, You’re embarrassing yourself.

            1. You spew foul insults, lies, and other attempted provocations on a daily basis, Rhodesy. Are you embarrassed by your own behavior? How could anyone else be embarrassed in front of a troll like you?

              1. The one who starts fights with almost everyone and spews foul insults is complaining?
                What an a$$. You started a fight with me and then said I was “Allan”. When I explained to you what happened and who I was you played hit and run. Keep hitting and running.

                I am not the first to notice this so I doubt I will be the last.

      1. The emoulant clause refers to members of congress, not the twisted interpretation used today.

      2. I wouldn’t believe the WP if it was the last aswipe available on the planet! Sounds like ur wrapped in it.
        You might make the same statement about how Obama made out as POTUS. Butt then you don’t have the WP backing u up. boohoo

        1. Trump has been the most thoroughly investigated human in American history. Funny how they have not convicted him of anything. How is that? If there is such proof of his misconduct, he would have been long gone by now.

          1. The OLC said that a sitting president can’t be indicted, so he can’t be tried and convicted yet.

      3. Hey “honest” why didn’t the Muller investigation find any of the WP absolutely stupid claims? Muller had every tool at their disposal. And the WP’s journalist hacks did?
        WoW, you must think we ALL are as gullible as you. Strike that- stupid as you!

      4. “Trump transferred a great deal of money from the U.S. Treasury to the Trump Organization”

        Committed to Dishonesty robs banks on a regular basis.

        See how that works, moronic one?

        1. i didn’t know Committed to Dishonesty robs banks, but now I do. If someone asks for proof I can quote an authority or an anonymous person.

          “Committed to Dishonesty robs banks on a regular basis.”

          That’s my proof and now Rhodes can confirm his proof by quoting mine. That is how the world of the left works.

  16. Ignoring Turley’s nuanced arguments, we need a special counsel for many reasons.

    (1) We deserve light on the apparent corruption in Washington.

    (2) Equal justice – the “protected” get a much softer justice and that undermines our faith in the system.

    (3) We have no idea how deep this corruption may or may not go – show us.

    (4) The Dems pushed the Russia investigation to kneecap Trump; a Biden investigation will show that there are consequences to that cynical game.

    1. Monument, your post here is precisely WHY a Special Counsel. We either have an open government or we don’t. The pendulum seems to be pushed AGAINST open government with equal justice, or we don’t.
      Isn’t it interesting that the largest demographic of the elected Congress is LAWYER?

  17. “Those same fears exist with this scandal, and those same Democrats should support a full congressional investigation.”

    My friend, that will only happen when pigs take wings

    1. Dear Mr Turley given that Trump was having discussions in the WH about using the military to overthrow the election results who really gives a shit about Hunter Biden. Given that most politicians these days in Congress are bought and paid for I suspect there are way to many offspring that have used their political connections to get plum jobs and or making money schemes.

      1. But the professor doesn’t seem to care much about Trump or the way he and his crime family have been milking the government for all its worth case and benefits not just from the treasury but also from foreign governments like CHINA. Money from Middle East Rulers and Russian “banks”. It’s all ok. Don’t look at Trump or MCCONNELL; it’s about Hunter Biden!

        The Professor seems to like his slot as the Republicans go to legal expert. So disappointing.

        1. It appears that for the foreseeable future JT will post often about Hunter and make a big deal of every right wing accusation about Biden. This is in clear contrast to his ignoring of the very real Trump scandals and corruption. I suspect JT will be quite opposed to any post-presidency investigations into the Trumps.

          1. Who else is posting news and analysis about Hunter and James Biden and the Biden family graft and corruption scandals? No one in mainstream media will even ask Joe a question, let alone press him on anything relevant. Thank God for Turley’s attention to the stories that the MSM wants to continue to bury.

            1. Pelosi’s kids are cashing in. Romney’s kids are cashing in. John Kerry’s kids are cashing in. None of the “legistlators” will make the lucrative family business dealing “illegal.” Why should they? Kaching.

                1. How? Biden’s family are selling influence to the hightest bidders all around the world. Hunter is the bag man for the family ‘business’ who goes around Hoovering up the cash by the millions. For what, exactly, were the Bidens paid millions upon millions? What did the Biden’s “do” for that kind of money from CCP connected companies?

          2. MollyG making claims with no proof.

            Let’s see the laptop and talk about it. The “Big guy” is about to take office – with the stench of blackmail hanging over him.

        2. You speak of crimes of the President? Where is your evidence?

          The FBI has a laptop that has been seen by numerous people and it is enough to bury Biden. Let’s have the mainstream press show what the NY Post has shown.

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