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June 19, 2019

4/3/2019 6:09:00 PM
Trump saga not over

Let’s all breathe a sigh of relief that the Mueller investigation is concluded after almost two years of high dudgeon from Trump and his devoted followers. I doubt that the release of Attorney General Barr’s redacted report will put to rest the parsing of words and phrases therein. But let’s be clear about the necessity and importance of Mueller’s thorough and fair effort.
A foreign adversary, Russia, interfered with our 2016 presidential election process to favor candidate Trump. Eight U.S. intelligence agencies affirmed that interference. Despite that, Mr. Trump stated in Helsinki he believed Putin’s denial of interference. In addition, members of Trump’s campaign team, including family members, met secretly with Russian operatives in Trump Tower and elsewhere and then lied about it, including Trump.
So, the necessary investigation has led to over thirty indictments and half a dozen criminal convictions or guilty pleas, including the President’s personal lawyer, a campaign manager, a national security advisor and more. If the President had been unquestionably implicated, this phase of our national embarrassment would go on for another two years. For having been spared that, we can be thankful.
In last week’s Weekly News, Scott Stoppelman stated that the Mueller report “completely and totally exonerated” Trump of collusion and obstruction. In fact, the report stated that it did NOT exonerate Trump and left it up to A.G. Barr to sort out.
Perhaps Mr. Stoppelman feels that the stated offenses are all right, and the offenders have not been given justice.
Perhaps he thinks that Robert Mueller, a former justice department lawyer and FBI director, a decorated Marine veteran and lifelong Republican, is not an honorable man who has dedicated most of his career to serving his country.
Perhaps Mr. Stoppelman feels that Trump’s ad hominem attacks on Mr. Mueller’s character and fairness were justified and deserving.
I take exception to his views, as well as his challenge that we should just get over it. Our system is far from perfect, and we should not accept malfeasance and corruption in our leaders.
Stay informed. Get engaged.
Rick Shorten
Pleasant Ridge

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