Trump's Aggressive Contempt for the Rule of Law

Donald Trump sat down with Fox News' Ainsley Earhardt for an interview, and it was the usual shitshow of authoritarianism, corruption, and general argle-bargle. He railed about his opponents and critics, confessed to a felony, warned that "everybody would be very poor" if he's impeached, and again expressed a breathtaking contempt for the rule of law:


Earhardt: —if you're saying the payments, if they're not illegal, then why would he even, why would he use that information for a plea deal?

Trump: Because he — because he makes a better deal when he uses me. Like everybody else. And one of the reasons I respect Paul Manafort so much is he went through that trial— You know, they make up stories! People make up stories. This whole thing about "flipping," they call it. I know all about flipping; for 30, 40 years I've been watching flippers. Everything's wonderful and then they get 10 years in jail and they flip on whoever the next highest one is, or as high as you can go.

It, it almost oughta be outlawed. It's not fair. Because if somebody's gonna give, spend 5 years like Michael Cohen, or 10 years, or 15 years in jail because of a taxi cab industry, because he defrauded some bank— Uh, the last two were the tiny ones. You know, campaign violations are considered not a big deal, frankly. Uh, but if somebody defrauded a bank, and he's gonna get 10 years in jail or 20 years in jail, but if you can say something bad about Donald Trump, and you'll go down to 2 years or 3 years, which is the deal he made—

In all fairness to him, most people are going to do that. And I've seen it many times. I've had many friends involved in this stuff. It's called "flipping" and it almost oughta be illegal. You get 10 years in jail but if you say bad things about somebody— In other words, make up stories, if you don't know. Make up stories — they just make up lies! Alan Dershowitz said "compose," right?

They make up lies. I've seen it many times. They make up things, and now they go from 10 years to they're a national hero. They have a statue erected in their honor. It's not — it's not a fair thing. But, ah, that's why he did it.
First of all, no one has seen it happen many times that someone who makes a plea deal becomes a national hero and has a statue erected in their honor, because that has never fucking happened at all.

Secondly, I'm not sure how Trump imagines it's helping his cause to repeatedly assert that he's seen people "flipping" for decades and had "many friends involved in this stuff," because that just makes him sound like the criminal that he is.

But most importantly, this is yet another outrageous and intolerable expression of contempt for the rule of law by the sitting president of the United States. Participating with prosecutors in exchange for leniency is a totally legal and often useful part of the justice system. That Trump believes it should be criminalized is an indication that he is not on the side of justice, but on the side of those seeking to evade it.

Which we already knew. But here it is, in black and white, from the mouth of the man himself.

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