The Trump Dump
January 6th Committee gives its referrals
Bryan Zepp Jamieson
December 19th, 2022
The January 6th committee held its final meeting today, and voted to make a criminal referral to the Department of Justice on Trump for four potential felony counts. Those referrals included obstruction of an official proceeding of Congress, assisting an insurrection and conspiring to defraud the United States. The committee also said Trump may have committed seditious conspiracy. Should the Department of Justice elect to act on these referrals, the resultant indictments could amount to 35 years in jail. Given Trump’s age and health, even a ten year sentence would ensure he never walked free again.
The seditious conspiracy charge is both the rarest and the most serious. It’s one step short of a charge of treason.
The committee also referred ethics charges against four congressmen, all Republicans for their involvement in the events of January 6. Those four are Kevin McCarthy, Jim Jordan, Andy Biggs and Scott Perry. McCarthy is the leading candidate to be Speaker (second in line to the Presidency) and Jordan is expected to become chair of the Judiciary Committee. If nothing else shows how incredibly low the Republican Party has sunk, that would be it.
Jordan plans to launch endless investigations, of Biden, of Biden family members, of Special Counsel Jack Smith, Attorney-General Merrick Garland, the FBI, the CIA, and pretty much anyone who isn’t part of the nutball right. It’s going to be fun watching him issue subpoenas while under investigations for an ethics breach, the nature of which includes refusing to obey a congressional subpoena.
Andy Biggs spent the rest of his day on Twitter, or what’s left of it, raving about the “open border” and all the terrible people swarming over and replacing the white race. (That last bit was implied. Evidently the Canadian border, which is far less guarded, isn’t a problem.)
Special Counsel Jack Smith hasn’t been showing any signs he’s just screwing around, but the Committee’s finding today, combined with the thousand pages of evidence coming out Wednesday, should make formal DOJ indictments against Trump, some of his co-conspirators, and members of Congress almost inevitable.
The January Sixth Committee will go down as one of the legendary committees in Congressional history, along with the 9/11 Committee, the Watergate Committees, the Army-McCarthy hearings. It will be something the public will want to remember, particularly the fairness and decorum and the investigative depth shown, when the clown show convenes next January, and we are once again treated to the spectacle of amoral slime like Jim Jordan screaming down witnesses as they try to answer ridiculously contrived questions about scandals that didn’t actually exist. Kevin McCarthy has vowed to throw all Democrats who were on the 1/6 Committee out of all committee memberships in an open act of childish and improper retaliation.
The Republicans will look like scum, not just because they are scum, but because with the 1/6 Committee, the public saw Congress doing its job, protecting the Constitution and finding the truth.
An amazing 62% of the public say they want to read the Committee’s final report, which is said to be over 1,000 pages long. Just the introduction is 100 pages, and I’ll be surprised if 10% actually read that. (I hope to be in that 10%, but I’ll be the first to admit that a thousand pages might be too much for me).
I notice today that very few Republicans were out there defending Trump. Mitch McConnell annoyed some of the more servile members of the party by observing, “’The entire nation knows who is responsible for that day. Beyond that, I don’t have any immediate observations.” McConnell is belatedly realizing what his legacy in all this is going to be.
Even Trump himself seems to have gone silent. I doubt that will last. Trump can’t ignore any sort of attack for long. And I suppose his response will only implicate him further.
A hundred years from now, some overimaginative playwright will hit on the notion of Trump as a heroic, tragic, flawed figure, one who brought about his own demise from his sterling belief that he was acting only in the interests of what was best for all. A King Lear figure, perhaps, even Prometheus.
But we know better. Trump was never anything more than a third-rater, born to far too much wealth and power, protected his entire life from consequences, and never forced to consider treating others as humans rather than objects to be manipulated. His fall comes, not from good intentions, but only the lowliest and tawdriest, the Faginesque grasping of an amoral man seeking ultimate power.
The Committee didn’t save Americans from the vice of worshiping such men, but they may have broken them of the vice of worshiping this particular specimen.