Photo-Illustration: Intelligencer; Photo: Nathan Posner/Shutterstock
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Donald Trump Tells Georgia Witness Not to Testify

What could this possibly indicate about his guilt or innocence?

Photo-Illustration: Intelligencer; Photo: Nathan Posner/Shutterstock

Republicans have many complaints about the various indictments of Donald Trump. They think the prosecutors are too liberal or (if they are Ron DeSantis supporters) that the charges are designed to help Trump win the nomination or that it will foment violence or that Joe Biden and/or Hillary Clinton are just as bad. What you rarely hear them say is that Trump is innocent.

This rather gaping hole in their line of defenses was exposed yet again Monday morning when Trump urged a witness in his pending prosecution in Georgia not to testify:

Photo: @realDonaldTrump/Truth Social

Georgia law prohibits intimidating potential witnesses. This message is probably not witness intimidation as it does not contain any threats. It may be witness tampering, but we can leave that to the lawyers.

What can certainly be ascertained, without any legal training, is that this is not the behavior of an innocent man. If Trump did not commit any crimes in the course of attempting to overturn the election and secure an unelected second term, wouldn’t he be in favor of securing testimony from relevant witnesses? What theory supports the assumption that Jeff Duncan, a Republican, would fabricate incriminating evidence against him?

Obviously, in a court of law, any defendant, including Trump, enjoys the presumption of innocence and has no legal requirement to rebut the case made by prosecutors. But doesn’t it seem just a tad suspicious that he is trying to keep relevant witnesses from testifying?

And for that matter, doesn’t it raise some red flags in the Republican mind that Trump attacks “rats” for flipping on bosses as the worst people in the world, that he worked with mobsters and personally retained a mob lawyer, is known to berate his own lawyers and aides for taking notes of their conversations, and that an unusually large number of his associates have been convicted of or admitted to crimes?

Maybe, just maybe, the reason Trump keeps getting indicted for crimes is not that the criminal justice system is in the grips of a vast liberal conspiracy but that he is, in fact, a criminal?

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Donald Trump Tells Georgia Witness Not to Testify