Frederick Hall: Not a witch hunt
I watched all of former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s testimony before the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees. Both sides of the aisle made points and erred in my view. The most important contrast lay in the substance of their arguments. The Democrats’ mainstream fare was facts and associations relating to them. The Republicans’ was arguing that the facts and associations should be ignored because people with a liberal bias gathered them.
Every person in America is innocent until proven guilty as the Republicans repeatedly stressed. I heartily agree with the legal principle: I vigorously disagree with their serious misapplication of it. They turned it around to mean that there is no misconduct until guilt is proven in court.
We would all likely agree that Adolf Hitler was responsible for an enormous number of deaths yet never stood trial. I wonder. Would they call him innocent? I hope not.
The Republicans also echoed Trump’s oft-repeated charge that Mueller was conducting a “witch hunt.” But note Mueller’s behavior. Committee members gave him opening after opening to go beyond the findings of the report, to speculate about a person’s intent or to draw inferences more negative than were already there: He refused. Any witch hunter would jump all over those opportunities.
Trump’s charges against Mueller are fake; the vulnerability that Trump’s covering for our sworn enemy Russia inflicts on our elections — the very foundation of democracy — is very real.
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