The President Is Not a Dictator, But He Thinks He Is

Here are three things I read back-to-back this morning:

1. [Content Note: Video may autoplay at link] Jordan Fabian at the Hill: Trump Signals White House Won't Comply with Democratic Probes.
[Donald] Trump on Tuesday signaled the White House will not comply with a barrage of congressional investigations, accusing Democrats in the House of launching the probes to hurt his chances of winning reelection in 2020. "It's a disgrace to our country. I'm not surprised that it's happening. Basically, they've started the campaign. So the campaign begins," Trump told reporters at the White House.

Trump suggested he was unwilling to comply with the House Judiciary Committee's requests for documents related to 81 of his associates... The president's remarks suggest the White House could invoke executive privilege or take other measures to shield internal documents or discussions from Democratic-led panels investigating Trump's administration, campaign, and businesses.
2. Anita Kumar at Politico: Trump Officials Already Stonewalling House Democratic Requests.
Donald Trump's strategy on congressional investigations has amounted to a two-pronged strategy: dodge requests — and attack, attack, attack.

The White House launched a fire-breathing public relations response to House Democrats while the Trump administration has refused or delayed turning over documents in 30 investigations by a dozen different committees, according to House Democrats.

The delays buy time for White House officials to weigh important legal decisions, including whether to invoke executive privilege claims or a policy that provides immunity for senior White House aides.

Trump White House allies, meanwhile, are in favor of a prolonged fight with Capitol Hill.
3. Rosalind S. Helderman and Rachael Bade at the Washington Post: Former Trump Adviser Says He Does Not Plan to Cooperate with House Judiciary Inquiry.
A former campaign aide for President Trump, one of 81 people to receive a request for documents this week from the House Judiciary Committee, has already informed the committee that he has no records responsive to their inquiries and he does not plan to testify in front of the panel.

The letter from an attorney for Michael Caputo, who worked for Trump during part of the 2016 campaign, represents the first skirmish in what is likely to be broad resistance from Trump aides and associates to new inquiries issued this week by the Judiciary Committee.

Caputo told The Washington Post that he has already begun talking with four other Trump associates who received requests from the committee this week to begin a joint strategy of resisting requests for testimony.

"All four are reluctant to appear because they believe it's a perjury trap designed to move toward impeachment of the president," he said.
It can't be a "perjury trap" if you just tell the truth. That's essentially an admission that they would have to lie to protect Donald Trump from criminal charges.

Meanwhile, the White House is scrambling to figure out how to potentially bend or break the law in order to protect Trump. And Senate and House Republicans are still protecting him. And they're hustling to stack the judiciary so that the courts will protect him.

And every last one of them is becoming a co-conspirator in Trump's collusion, as they line up to shield him from consequences for being a traitor to the nation he's meant to defend.

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