Analysis by Reporting San Diego
August 1, 2017 (WASHINGTON) One would have never thought that the word liar would apply to the President of the United States. However, it does. There is also filial loyalty and the need of a parent to protect a child. But we are dealing with lies and a high level of legal exposure. Why? Because the president helped to draft an initial statement that tried to tell us that the meeting between his son, Donald Trump Jr, and a Russian lawyer were all about adoptions.
First off, in any normal administration, the president would have been prevented from penning this statement by his lawyers. There is a chance his lawyers tried to direct the president away from drafting this document. They knew that there was possibly going to be legal hell to pay. This may explain why his long time lawyer, Marc Kasowitz quit amidst this drama on July 21.
Lawyers are not only obliged as officers of the court to protect themselves but their clients. When lawyers lose control of their clients, sometimes they leave their clients behind, this is called abandonment. It is partly out of duty as officers of the court. If they cannot defend a client, and the client will not take legal advice, this is what happens.
The best explanation, or rather the simplest, of client abandonment that I found is actually in Slate. I chose this explanation since the language is simple and easy to follow. It is as follows:
…abandonment may be acceptable even if it harms the client’s interests, especially if the client has done something wrong. For example, a lawyer can walk away if the client is engaged in a continuing criminal enterprise, if he’s using the lawyer to perpetuate his illegal scheme, or if the client asks the lawyer to do something illegal himself. Deadbeat clients also risk abandonment, as do those who refuse to cooperate in their own representation
A case could be made that Kasowitz felt it was to his detriment, and that of the president to continue to represent Trump, who is hardly cooperating with counsel, or even listening to counsel. Given that the president insisted on drafting a document that was provable as a lie was likely one of the causes for his lawyer to say, enough.
It also increases the legal exposure of the president since it puts him at the center of the storm, directly. It raises his legal exposure as well. The investigation from Special Counsel Robert Mueller is looking at among other things, obstruction of justice. This statement, drafted on Air Force One on the way back from the G20 meeting, could be seen in that context.
However, this also explains why some loyalists to President Donald Trump are now asking for Mueller to resign. Trent Franks, from Arizona, is doing just this.
According to CBS:
Franks said in a statement that Mueller “must resign to maintain the integrity of the investigation into alleged Russian ties.”
“No one knows Mr. Mueller’s true intentions, but neither can anyone dispute that he now clearly appears to be a partisan arbiter of justice. Accordingly, the law is also explicitly clear: he must step down based on this conflict of interest,” said Franks.
The investigation is getting close to the president and his family, which is the reason the president also wants Mueller either to quit or be fired. Both Franks and the president have questioned the ability of the special counsel to do his job, or that of his team. They have painted them as partisans on a political witch hunt.
This tells this observer that perhaps Mueller is getting close to the heart of this. The problem is the same as it was for Richard Nixon. It was not the break in at the Watergate Hotel. It was the coverup. In this case it is not the meeting with a Russian lawyer and others with ties to the Russian government. It is the sloppy coverup. This is a coverup that follows a pattern of deceit.
Bringing in General John Kelly into the White House to take over as Chief of Staff is an obvious effort to bring some order and discipline to the West Wing. This is a West Wing that has none. The president will continue to attempt to use the Twitter in a strategic fashion. He weaponized the social media tool a while ago. It is no longer as effective as it once was, however. Why? Like the child that cried wolf, it has become a tool used to show displeasure and to harass and cyber bully those inside and outside his administration. This is obvious with the treatment of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who recused himself and stands in the way of a Saturday Night Massacre.
We are watching an administration that is starting to implode. It is an administration run by a man who believes he is above the law. Like Nixon, he will find out, sooner or later, that the law still applies to him. For the sake of the country, we all hope it does not take too long. If we have a major international crisis and trust us, North Korea could be the locus of such, this President and this government are already paralyzed. This is serving the interests of the Russian Federation and China, not the United States or the Western alliance.