There’s almost nothing that Donald Trump likes more than telling the public that various legal entities and agencies have declared that he’s done nothing wrong — that there is “no collusion,” as he says over and over. It’s never been true in any sense that anyone with current legal standing has said it, of course. His old pal Alan Dershowitz has said it, and he’s a lawyer. Judge Jeanine says it over and over, and she’s technically still a judge, one supposes.
But no current judge, regardless of what anyone inside the Trump circle says, has even come close to indicating that Trump has been proven innocent, and they won’t ever say any such thing. The simple fact is, there is ample proof already available publicly that Trump is guilty of, at the very least, obstruction of justice.
But even that pales in comparison with what his associates have already been convicted of, pleaded guilty to, or are under investigation for. Perhaps the most high profile of Robert Mueller’s special counsel targets so far has been Trump’s 2016 campaign manager Paul Manafort. The investigation into Manafort in earnest began as part of the probe into the campaign’s involvement with an illicit scheme with Russia to unfairly affect the outcome of the election by strategically releasing damning information about his opponent Hillary Clinton, but quickly spiraled into an affair much larger than simply Manafort’s connections to Trump.
Once Manafort was on the hook, it seemed that Mueller had a hard time finding any activities by the former lobbyist for Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko that weren’t illegal, from fraudulent loan applications to money laundering to failure to register as a foreign agent to lying to federal investigators.
And although Trump has complained multiple times about the cost of the ongoing Mueller probe — as though Congressional Republicans didn’t waste millions upon millions of dollars fruitlessly investigating Hillary Clinton about everything from her emails to the embassy in Benghazi, Libya — it looks like Mueller may have stumbled on a novel way to fund the effort, all while driving the President insane.
NPR’s Carrie Johnson reported last October that as part of the judgment in Manafort’s first criminal trial, Mueller was seizing a substantial number of Manafort’s assets, including a home in the Hamptons, one in Virginia, several bank accounts worth millions of dollars, and even his condominium inside Donald Trump’s most prodigious real estate property in New York, Trump Tower. That’s the location that federal authorities raided last year as part of the probe.
But that condo wasn’t rented or leased — Manafort owned it outright, and that means that, through the efforts of Robert Mueller and the special counsel, the United States government now owns a part of Trump’s favorite namesake.
Imagine Trump’s horror at having a piece of his heart in the hands of his mortal enemy.
Featured image is a screen capture.