by Deroy Murdock
Rather than simply try to defeat Donald J. Trump, Democrats want him to die in prison. Neo-totalitarian Democrat campaign operatives masquerading as local, county, and federal prosecutors have deployed four criminal cases against the former president. The New York Post calculates that if he is convicted on all 91 charges he faces, Trump would spend 712 years behind bars. The surprisingly spry 77-year-old could enrage his critics even further, live until at least 2735 A.D., and regain his freedom at age 789.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is the latest to let slip the dogs of anti-Trump war. On Aug. 11 at 11:36 p.m., just before the witching hour, Willis unleashed a 13-count indictment against Trump, with additional charges lobbed at 18 others in an alleged racketeering conspiracy. Willis’ 98-page accusarama bludgeons routine political activity and constitutionally protected civil liberties.
Willis describes 161 “acts” as “in furtherance of the conspiracy.” This sample of what Willis calls criminal should shock Americans:
- Act 1: “On or about the 4th day of November 2020, DONALD JOHN TRUMP made nationally televised speech falsely declaring victory in the 2020 presidential election. Approximately four days earlier, on or about October 31, 2020, DONALD JOHN TRUMP discussed draft speech with unindicted coconspirator.”
So, now it’s criminal for the president of the United States to deliver a speech stating that he thought he won an election? Furthermore, it’s unlawful for the president to discuss a draft speech?
- Act 3: “On or about the 19th day of November 2020, RUDOLPH WILLIAM LOUIS GIULIANI, JENNA LYNN ELLIS, SIDNEY KATHERINE POWELL, and unindicted co-conspirator Individual 3 … appeared at a press conference at the Republican National Committee Headquarters … and made false statements concerning fraud in the November 3, 2020, presidential election in Georgia and elsewhere.”
So, press conferences about vote fraud are now illegal?
- Act 6: “On or about the 21st day of November 2020, MARK RANDALL MEADOWS sent text message to United States Representative Scott Perry from Pennsylvania and stated, ‘Can you send me the number for the speaker and the leader of PA Legislature. POTUS wants to chat with them.’”
So, requesting a phone number is a crime?
- Act 22: “On or about the 3rd day of December 2020, DONALD JOHN TRUMP caused to be tweeted from the Twitter account @RealDonaldTrump, ‘Georgia hearings now on @OANN. Amazing!’”
So, now it’s a felony for POTUS to urge people to watch a live broadcast?
- Act 135: “On or about the 6th day of January 2021, DONALD JOHN TRUMP appeared and spoke at a rally at the Ellipse in Washington, D.C … and encouraged those in attendance at the rally to march to the United States Capitol.”
Trump’s actions were perfectly legal. He had every constitutional right to address a rally, question the election outcome, and encourage Americans to walk to the U.S. Capitol. Countless politicians and activists have done so for centuries, without prosecution.
Eight attorneys are among this tyrant’s 19 victims. Willis indicted them for giving legal advice with which she quarrels. These lawyers counseled the former president and his supporters on how to request relief from Georgia officials for what Trump & Co. considered weird scenes inside the vote mines. Numerous attorneys advised Trump throughout this post-election wrangling. He heeded some and ignored others. Lawyers and clients do this daily.
Attorneys should be free to guide their clients without fretting that practicing law will trigger prosecutions and crippling legal fees. The Fifth and Sixth Amendments delineate the rights of criminal suspects to legal representation. The spirit of these amendments coincides with the right of Americans to ask attorneys how to avoid criminal liability. Thus, the Georgia indictment tramples these two amendments — or, at least, the founders’ intentions about these freedoms.
Willis repeatedly claims that Trump & Co. “knowingly” made false statements that the 2020 election was stolen. In her view, they really believed that Joe Biden won the presidency, fair and square, but then pretended that it was swiped in order to wrestle the presidency from Democrat hands.
I know five of those indicted. They and masses of the 74 million Americans who voted for Trump believed then, and believe now, that the 2020 vote reeked of irregularities, skullduggery, and corruption. CNN reports, “Among registered voters who say they cast a ballot [sic] for Trump in 2020, 75% say they have doubts about Biden’s legitimacy.”
At best, this stench deserved then, and deserves now, far deeper scrutiny than it received. At worst, this funk robbed Trump’s reelection.
This is vital, since the Georgia indictment rests largely on the notion that Trump & Co. operated maliciously (“Steal the Oval Office that we lost!”), not sincerely (“Defend the White House that we won!”).
Willis will be hard-pressed to present any evidence that Trump believed that he lost. When has he ever said this? Indeed, for better or worse, many of Trump’s supporters urge him to stop saying he was swindled in 2020 and, instead, focus on 2024 and beyond.
Moreover, there are numerous reasons why Trump & Co. smelled a rat, stood athwart the official election results, and yelled, “Stop!”
To that end, in December 2020, the Trump campaign sued Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R-Ga.) and several other election officials. In a statement, the campaign excoriated the Peach State for “failure to process and secure the ballots, failure to verify the signatures on absentee ballots, the appearance of mysterious ‘pristine’ absentee ballots not received in official absentee ballot envelopes that were voted almost solely for Joe Biden, failure to allow poll watchers meaningful access to observe the election, among other violations of law.”
“What was filed today clearly documents that there are literally tens of thousands of illegal votes that were cast, counted, and included in the tabulations the Secretary of State is preparing to certify,” said Ray S. Smith III, the campaign’s chief counsel.
Smith promised to present eyewitnesses and experts who could prove widespread “illegal votes: 2,560 felons; 66,247 underage voters, 2,423 votes from people not registered; 1,043 individuals registered at post office boxes; 4,926 individuals who voted in Georgia after registering in another state; 395 individuals who voted in two states; 15,700 votes from people who moved out of state before the election; 40,279 votes of people who moved without re-registering in their new county; and another 30,000 to 40,000 absentee ballots lacking proper signature matching and verification.”
Could Joe Biden have extracted a winning margin of 11,769 votes from among these 163,573 allegedly fraudulent ballots? This was entirely possible. And Trump & Co. had every right to file suit to adjudicate this matter. This is how Americans should settle disputes. Litigation isn’t pretty, but incinerating police precincts is far uglier.
Apparently, Fani Willis disagrees. Ray Stallings Smith III is among those she indicted.
Trump followers also cite a Dec. 23, 2020 lawsuit by VoterGA founder Garland Favorito et al vs. a half dozen Fulton County elections officials. In this case, several “hand count” audit monitors observed glaring anomalies.
- According to this lawsuit, election observers Dr. Sonia Francis-Rolle, Barbara Hartman, Susan Voyles, and Dr. Gordon Rolle all witnessed the following: “[S]uspect absentee ballots were not creased,” which they should have been, if they were mailed to voters and then returned in envelopes for tabulation, “the suspect ballots were not marked with a writing instrument but appeared to be marked with toner,” as if they were filled not by man but by machine, and “the suspect ballots were different in the stock of paper used.”
- Per her signed, sworn, and notarized affidavit, Fulton County recount observer Robin Hall declared, under penalty of perjury, “I observed many boxes of absentee or mail in ballots being counted,” on Nov. 14, 2020. “Many of the boxes of ballots had voted for 100% for Biden and 0% for Trump,” she continued. “The ballots appeared to be perfectly filled out as if they were pre-printed with the presidential candidate selected. They did not look like a person had filled this out at home. All of them looked alike.”
- Audit monitor Judy Aube’s affidavit stated, “I observed that many of the boxes of ballots had voted 98% for Biden and 2% for Trump.”
Trumpophobes scream that judges blocked these and other lawsuits, often for “lack of standing” (as if candidates and voters were unqualified to file election challenges), or barred plaintiffs from inspecting ballots to test these suspicions.
Beyond a shadow of a doubt, these parties had every right to file these suits.
It is no crime to pursue litigation, even if it fails. Otherwise, 50 percent of the parties to civil actions would face indictment.
Donald J. Trump and his supporters might be totally correct about what we see as election fraud in Georgia and other states. Or maybe we are wrong. In either case, we had and have every right to state what we believe went horribly and perhaps criminally wrong at the polls in 2020.
And Trump and his co-defendants also had every right to express this view and petition the federal government and those of Georgia and other states to redress these grievances. These liberties do not reside in some crevice of the U.S. Code. They are in the First Amendment, namely, the freedoms of speech and petition.
It is hard to believe that District Attorney Fani Willis never made it even that far into the Bill of Rights. Her vicious, yet vacuous, indictment suggests that she ditched constitutional law class that week.
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Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News contributor.