Monday, March 20, 2023

On this day in history, March 20, 1854, Republican Party founded to oppose expansion of slavery

 By Kerry J. Byrne | Fox News

The birthplace of the Republican Party in Ripon, Wisconsin. The movement that would create the anti-slavery party first met here on March 20, 1854.  (MPI/Getty Images)

Anti-slavery activists motivated as pending Kansas-Nebraska Act overturned Missouri Compromise

"Cries of ‘Repeal! Repeal!’ resounded throughout the nation, following the Ripon, Wisconsin meeting of March 20, 1854 in demonstration against the ‘Kansas-Nebraska Swindle,’" The Jefferson Banner of Jefferson Co., Wisconsin wrote years later of the transformative moment in American political history. 

Bovay was reportedly the first to call the assembly the "Republican" party.

His moniker found a powerful ally in influential newspaper publisher Horace Greeley. 

"We should not care much whether those thus united against slavery were designated 'Whig,' 'Free Democrat' or something else," Greeley wrote in his New-York Tribune in June 1854. 

"Though we think some simple name like 'Republican' would more fitly designate those who had united to restore the Union to its true mission of champion and promulgator of Liberty rather than propagandist of slavery."

The Kansas-Nebraska Act was signed into law by President Franklin Pierce on May 30 amid increasing hostility in the halls of power in Washington, D.C., and amid increasing groundswell of opposition. 

Horace Greeley, American newspaper editor known especially for his vigorous articulation of the North's antislavery sentiments during the 1850s. He is remembered often for his quote, "Go West, Young Man." (Getty Images)

"Local meetings were held throughout the North in 1854 and 1855. The first national convention of the new party was held in Pittsburgh on Feb. 22, 1856," writes the Wisconsin Republican Party in its online history.

The party held its first nominating convention in Philadelphia in July 1856. It selected California explorer John C. Fremont as the first Republican to run for president. 

He lost to Pennsylvania Democrat James Buchanan, but made an impressive showing for the upstart party founded only two years earlier. 

Fremont won 11 of 31 states and earned 33% of the popular vote, finishing ahead of former President Millard Fillmore of New York, who represented the short-lived Know Nothing Party. 

Campaign banner for presidential candidate Abraham Lincoln and running mate Hannibal Hamlin. (VCG Wilson/Corbis via Getty Images)

The true impact of the Republican earthquake was felt when the party's candidate, Abraham Lincoln, won the presidency in the hotly contested four-man race of 1860. 

Democrat-led pro-slavery states quickly seceded from the Union in response to the Republican victory, launching the nation into the Civil War. 

Republicans after the war pushed through in rapid order the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. Collectively known as the Reconstruction Amendments, they abolished slavery, provided equal protection under the law and guaranteed voting rights. 

Titled "Scene at the polls in Cheyenne," this colorized engraving shows a group of women as they line up on the sidewalk to cast their ballots through an open window, in Cheyenne, Wyoming Territory, 1888. (Stock Montage/Getty Images)

Democrats regained power in the years after the Civil War. 

The Republicans reportedly earned the name Grand Old Party in 1888, after winning back the White House from Democrat Grover Cleveland. 

"Let us be thankful that under the rule of the Grand Old Party ... these United States will resume the onward and upward march which the election of Grover Cleveland in 1884 partially arrested," the Chicago Tribune wrote in what some sources say is the first use of the GOP label.

The Republican Party led the fight for woman's suffrage, first in the Wyoming Territories in 1869 and then pushing through the 19th Amendment after sweeping to power in both houses of Congress in November 1918.

The newly Republican-led Senate approved the amendment in June 1919 and sent it on the states "after 41 years of debate," notes the chamber's official history. 

The Republican Party later pushed through the Civil Rights Acts of 1964 in alliance with Democrat President Lyndon B. Johnson, who split with his own party to support the bill. 

Illustration entitled "THE CRADLE OF THE G.O.P.," depicting the first Republican convention held at Lafayette Hall in Pittsburgh on Feb. 22, 1856. Shows two views: one of hall's exterior, one of interior during proceedings. (Getty Images)

The Civil Rights Act passed despite a ferocious 72-day filibuster in the Senate led by a collection of Democrat icons.

Among those senators who staunchly opposed the Civil Rights Act: Al Gore Sr. of Tennessee (father of the future vice president), J. William Fulbright of Arkansas (mentor of future president Bill Clinton), Strom Thurmond of South Carolina and Robert Byrd of West Virginia. 

"The Republican Party has a rich history of fighting for the rights of all Americans, from opposing slavery to giving women the right to vote to fostering individual rights across every group in our nation today," A.J. Catsimatidis, vice chairperson of the New York State Republican Party, told Fox News Digital.



The Party of Civil Rights

From the May 28, 2012, issue of NR.

his magazine has long specialized in debunking pernicious political myths, and Jonah Goldberg has now provided an illuminating catalogue of tyrannical clichés, but worse than the myth and the cliché is the outright lie, the utter fabrication with malice aforethought, and my nominee for the worst of them is the popular but indefensible belief that the two major U.S. political parties somehow “switched places” vis-à-vis protecting the rights of black Americans, a development believed to be roughly concurrent with the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the rise of Richard Nixon. That Republicans have let Democrats get away with this mountebankery is a symptom of their political fecklessness, and in letting them get away with it the GOP has allowed itself to be cut off rhetorically from a pantheon of Republican political heroes, from Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass to Susan B. Anthony, who represent an expression of conservative ideals as true and relevant today as it was in the 19th century. Perhaps even worse, the Democrats have been allowed to rhetorically bury their Bull Connors, their longstanding affiliation with the Ku Klux Klan, and their pitiless opposition to practically every major piece of civil-rights legislation for a century. Republicans may not be able to make significant inroads among black voters in the coming elections, but they would do well to demolish this myth nonetheless.

Even if the Republicans’ rise in the South had happened suddenly in the 1960s (it didn’t) and even if there were no competing explanation (there is), racism — or, more precisely, white southern resentment over the political successes of the civil-rights movement — would be an implausible explanation for the dissolution of the Democratic bloc in the old Confederacy and the emergence of a Republican stronghold there. That is because those southerners who defected from the Democratic party in the 1960s and thereafter did so to join a Republican party that was far more enlightened on racial issues than were the Democrats of the era, and had been for a century. There is no radical break in the Republicans’ civil-rights history: From abolition to Reconstruction to the anti-lynching laws, from the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the Civil Rights Act of 1875 to the Civil Rights Acts of 1957, 1960, and 1964, there exists a line that is by no means perfectly straight or unwavering but that nonetheless connects the politics of Lincoln with those of Dwight D. Eisenhower. And from slavery and secession to remorseless opposition to everything from Reconstruction to the anti-lynching laws, the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments, the Civil Rights Act of 1875, and the Civil Rights Acts of 1957 and 1960, there exists a similarly identifiable line connecting John Calhoun and Lyndon Baines Johnson. Supporting civil-rights reform was not a radical turnaround for congressional Republicans in 1964, but it was a radical turnaround for Johnson and the Democrats.

The depth of Johnson’s prior opposition to civil-rights reform must be digested in some detail to be properly appreciated. In the House, he did not represent a particularly segregationist constituency (it “made up for being less intensely segregationist than the rest of the South by being more intensely anti-Communist,” as the New York Times put it), but Johnson was practically antebellum in his views. Never mind civil rights or voting rights: In Congress, Johnson had consistently and repeatedly voted against legislation to protect black Americans from lynching. As a leader in the Senate, Johnson did his best to cripple the Civil Rights Act of 1957; not having votes sufficient to stop it, he managed to reduce it to an act of mere symbolism by excising the enforcement provisions before sending it to the desk of President Eisenhower. Johnson’s Democratic colleague Strom Thurmond nonetheless went to the trouble of staging the longest filibuster in history up to that point, speaking for 24 hours in a futile attempt to block the bill. The reformers came back in 1960 with an act to remedy the deficiencies of the 1957 act, and Johnson’s Senate Democrats again staged a record-setting filibuster. In both cases, the “master of the Senate” petitioned the northeastern Kennedy liberals to credit him for having seen to the law’s passage while at the same time boasting to southern Democrats that he had taken the teeth out of the legislation. Johnson would later explain his thinking thus: “These Negroes, they’re getting pretty uppity these days, and that’s a problem for us, since they’ve got something now they never had before: the political pull to back up their uppityness. Now we’ve got to do something about this — we’ve got to give them a little something, just enough to quiet them down, not enough to make a difference.”

Johnson did not spring up from the Democratic soil ex nihilo. Not one Democrat in Congress voted for the Fourteenth Amendment. Not one Democrat in Congress voted for the Fifteenth Amendment. Not one voted for the Civil Rights Act of 1875. Eisenhower as a general began the process of desegregating the military, and Truman as president formalized it, but the main reason either had to act was that President Wilson, the personification of Democratic progressivism, had resegregated previously integrated federal facilities. (“If the colored people made a mistake in voting for me, they ought to correct it,” he declared.) Klansmen from Senator Robert Byrd to Justice Hugo Black held prominent positions in the Democratic party — and President Wilson chose the Klan epic Birth of a Nation to be the first film ever shown at the White House.

Johnson himself denounced an earlier attempt at civil-rights reform as the “nigger bill.” So what happened in 1964 to change Democrats’ minds? In fact, nothing.

President Johnson was nothing if not shrewd, and he knew something that very few popular political commentators appreciate today: The Democrats began losing the “solid South” in the late 1930s — at the same time as they were picking up votes from northern blacks. The Civil War and the sting of Reconstruction had indeed produced a political monopoly for southern Democrats that lasted for decades, but the New Deal had been polarizing. It was very popular in much of the country, including much of the South — Johnson owed his election to the House to his New Deal platform and Roosevelt connections — but there was a conservative backlash against it, and that backlash eventually drove New Deal critics to the Republican party. Likewise, adherents of the isolationist tendency in American politics, which is never very far from the surface, looked askance at what Bob Dole would later famously call “Democrat wars” (a factor that would become especially relevant when the Democrats under Kennedy and Johnson committed the United States to a very divisive war in Vietnam). The tiniest cracks in the Democrats’ southern bloc began to appear with the backlash to FDR’s court-packing scheme and the recession of 1937. Republicans would pick up 81 House seats in the 1938 election, with West Virginia’s all-Democrat delegation ceasing to be so with the acquisition of its first Republican. Kentucky elected a Republican House member in 1934, as did Missouri, while Tennessee’s first Republican House member, elected in 1918, was joined by another in 1932. Throughout the 1940s and 1950s, the Republican party, though marginal, began to take hold in the South — but not very quickly: Dixie would not send its first Republican to the Senate until 1961, with Texas’s election of John Tower.

At the same time, Republicans went through a long dry spell on civil-rights progress. Many of them believed, wrongly, that the issue had been more or less resolved by the constitutional amendments that had been enacted to ensure the full citizenship of black Americans after the Civil War, and that the enduring marginalization of black citizens, particularly in the Democratic states, was a problem that would be healed by time, economic development, and organic social change rather than through a second political confrontation between North and South. (As late as 1964, the Republican platform argued that “the elimination of any such discrimination is a matter of heart, conscience, and education, as well as of equal rights under law.”) The conventional Republican wisdom of the day held that the South was backward because it was poor rather than poor because it was backward. And their strongest piece of evidence for that belief was that Republican support in the South was not among poor whites or the old elites — the two groups that tended to hold the most retrograde beliefs on race — but among the emerging southern middle class, a fact recently documented by professors Byron Shafer and Richard Johnston in The End of Southern Exceptionalism: Class, Race, and Partisan Change in the Postwar South (Harvard University Press, 2006). Which is to say: The Republican rise in the South was contemporaneous with the decline of race as the most important political question and tracked the rise of middle-class voters moved mainly by economic considerations and anti-Communism.

The South had been in effect a Third World country within the United States, and that changed with the post-war economic boom. As Clay Risen put it in the New York Times: “The South transformed itself from a backward region to an engine of the national economy, giving rise to a sizable new wealthy suburban class. This class, not surprisingly, began to vote for the party that best represented its economic interests: the GOP. Working-class whites, however — and here’s the surprise — even those in areas with large black populations, stayed loyal to the Democrats. This was true until the 90s, when the nation as a whole turned rightward in Congressional voting.” The mythmakers would have you believe that it was the opposite: that your white-hooded hillbilly trailer-dwelling tornado-bait voters jumped ship because LBJ signed a civil-rights bill (passed on the strength of disproportionately Republican support in Congress). The facts suggest otherwise.

There is no question that Republicans in the 1960s and thereafter hoped to pick up the angry populists who had delivered several states to Wallace. That was Patrick J. Buchanan’s portfolio in the Nixon campaign. But in the main they did not do so by appeal to racial resentment, direct or indirect. The conservative ascendency of 1964 saw the nomination of Barry Goldwater, a western libertarian who had never been strongly identified with racial issues one way or the other, but who was a principled critic of the 1964 act and its extension of federal power. Goldwater had supported the 1957 and 1960 acts but believed that Title II and Title VII of the 1964 bill were unconstitutional, based in part on a 75-page brief from Robert Bork. But far from extending a welcoming hand to southern segregationists, he named as his running mate a New York representative, William E. Miller, who had been the co-author of Republican civil-rights legislation in the 1950s. The Republican platform in 1964 was hardly catnip for Klansmen: It spoke of the Johnson administration’s failure to help further the “just aspirations of the minority groups” and blasted the president for his refusal “to apply Republican-initiated retraining programs where most needed, particularly where they could afford new economic opportunities to Negro citizens.” Other planks in the platform included: “improvements of civil rights statutes adequate to changing needs of our times; such additional administrative or legislative actions as may be required to end the denial, for whatever unlawful reason, of the right to vote; continued opposition to discrimination based on race, creed, national origin or sex.” And Goldwater’s fellow Republicans ran on a 1964 platform demanding “full implementation and faithful execution of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and all other civil rights statutes, to assure equal rights and opportunities guaranteed by the Constitution to every citizen.” Some dog whistle.

Of course there were racists in the Republican party. There were racists in the Democratic party. The case of Johnson is well documented, while Nixon had his fantastical panoply of racial obsessions, touching blacks, Jews, Italians (“Don’t have their heads screwed on”), Irish (“They get mean when they drink”), and the Ivy League WASPs he hated so passionately (“Did one of those dirty bastards ever invite me to his f***ing men’s club or goddamn country club? Not once”). But the legislative record, the evolution of the electorate, the party platforms, the keynote speeches — none of them suggests a party-wide Republican about-face on civil rights.

Neither does the history of the black vote. While Republican affiliation was beginning to grow in the South in the late 1930s, the GOP also lost its lock on black voters in the North, among whom the New Deal was extraordinarily popular. By 1940, Democrats for the first time won a majority of black votes in the North. This development was not lost on Lyndon Johnson, who crafted his Great Society with the goal of exploiting widespread dependency for the benefit of the Democratic party. Unlike the New Deal, a flawed program that at least had the excuse of relying upon ideas that were at the time largely untested and enacted in the face of a worldwide economic emergency, Johnson’s Great Society was pure politics. Johnson’s War on Poverty was declared at a time when poverty had been declining for decades, and the first Job Corps office opened when the unemployment rate was less than 5 percent. Congressional Republicans had long supported a program to assist the indigent elderly, but the Democrats insisted that the program cover all of the elderly — even though they were, then as now, the most affluent demographic, with 85 percent of them in households of above-average wealth. Democrats such as Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare Anthony J. Celebrezze argued that the Great Society would end “dependency” among the elderly and the poor, but the programs were transparently designed merely to transfer dependency from private and local sources of support to federal agencies created and overseen by Johnson and his political heirs. In the context of the rest of his program, Johnson’s unexpected civil-rights conversion looks less like an attempt to empower blacks and more like an attempt to make clients of them.

If the parties had in some meaningful way flipped on civil rights, one would expect that to show up in the electoral results in the years following the Democrats’ 1964 about-face on the issue. Nothing of the sort happened: Of the 21 Democratic senators who opposed the 1964 act, only one would ever change parties. Nor did the segregationist constituencies that elected these Democrats throw them out in favor of Republicans: The remaining 20 continued to be elected as Democrats or were replaced by Democrats. It was, on average, nearly a quarter of a century before those seats went Republican. If southern rednecks ditched the Democrats because of a civil-rights law passed in 1964, it is strange that they waited until the late 1980s and early 1990s to do so. They say things move slower in the South — but not that slow.

Republicans did begin to win some southern House seats, and in many cases segregationist Democrats were thrown out by southern voters in favor of civil-rights Republicans. One of the loudest Democratic segregationists in the House was Texas’s John Dowdy, a bitter and buffoonish opponent of the 1964 reforms, which he declared “would set up a despot in the attorney general’s office with a large corps of enforcers under him; and his will and his oppressive action would be brought to bear upon citizens, just as Hitler’s minions coerced and subjugated the German people. I would say this — I believe this would be agreed to by most people: that, if we had a Hitler in the United States, the first thing he would want would be a bill of this nature.” (Who says political rhetoric has been debased in the past 40 years?) Dowdy was thrown out in 1966 in favor of a Republican with a very respectable record on civil rights, a little-known figure by the name of George H. W. Bush.

It was in fact not until 1995 that Republicans represented a majority of the southern congressional delegation — and they had hardly spent the Reagan years campaigning on the resurrection of Jim Crow.

It was not the Civil War but the Cold War that shaped midcentury partisan politics. Eisenhower warned the country against the “military-industrial complex,” but in truth Ike’s ascent had represented the decisive victory of the interventionist, hawkish wing of the Republican party over what remained of the America First/Charles Lindbergh/Robert Taft tendency. The Republican party had long been staunchly anti-Communist, but the post-war era saw that anti-Communism energized and looking for monsters to slay, both abroad — in the form of the Soviet Union and its satellites — and at home, in the form of the growing welfare state, the “creeping socialism” conservatives dreaded. By the middle 1960s, the semi-revolutionary Left was the liveliest current in U.S. politics, and Republicans’ unapologetic anti-Communism — especially conservatives’ rhetoric connecting international socialism abroad with the welfare state at home — left the Left with nowhere to go but the Democratic party. Vietnam was Johnson’s war, but by 1968 the Democratic party was not his alone.

The schizophrenic presidential election of that year set the stage for the subsequent transformation of southern politics: Segregationist Democrat George Wallace, running as an independent, made a last stand in the old Confederacy but carried only five states, while Republican Richard Nixon, who had helped shepherd the 1957 Civil Rights Act through Congress, counted a number of Confederate states (North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, and Tennessee) among the 32 he carried. Democrat Hubert Humphrey was reduced to a northern fringe plus Texas. Mindful of the long-term realignment already under way in the South, Johnson informed Democrats worried about losing it after the 1964 act that “those states may be lost anyway.” Subsequent presidential elections bore him out: Nixon won a 49-state sweep in 1972, and, with the exception of the post-Watergate election of 1976, Republicans in the following presidential elections would more or less occupy the South like Sherman. Bill Clinton would pick up a handful of southern states in his two contests, and Barack Obama had some success in the post-southern South, notably Virginia and Florida.

The Republican ascendancy in Dixie is associated with the rise of the southern middle class, the increasingly trenchant conservative critique of Communism and the welfare state, the Vietnam controversy and the rise of the counterculture, law-and-order concerns rooted in the urban chaos that ran rampant from the late 1960s to the late 1980s, and the incorporation of the radical Left into the Democratic party. Individual events, especially the freak show that was the 1968 Democratic convention, helped solidify conservatives’ affiliation with the Republican party. Democrats might argue that some of these concerns — especially welfare and crime — are “dog whistles” or “code” for race and racism, but this criticism is shallow in light of the evidence and the real saliency of those issues among U.S. voters of all backgrounds and both parties for decades. Indeed, Democrats who argue that the best policies for black Americans are those that are soft on crime and generous with welfare are engaged in much the same sort of cynical racial calculation President Johnson was practicing when he informed skeptical southern governors that his plan for the Great Society was “to have them niggers voting Democratic for the next two hundred years.” Johnson’s crude racism is, happily, largely a relic of the past, but his strategy endures.


— Kevin D. Williamson is a roving correspondent for National Review and the author of The Dependency Agenda, which will be published by Encounter Books on May 29. This article appears in the May 28, 2012, issue of National Review.

Sunday, March 19, 2023

Trump and Hillary Have Been Accused of the Same Crime, but Hillary Never Faced Potential Arrest


(Rick T. Wilking/Pool via AP)

There’s a possibility of former President Donald Trump being indicted and arrested as early as next week over alleged campaign finance violations. Recent reports suggest that the indictment is now “on hold” in order to have another witness testify, but the threat of a potential arrest still looms.

The justice system is supposed to be blind to political affiliations and treat all individuals equally under the law. It’s hard to deny that there seems to be a double standard when it comes to the way justice is applied to those on the left versus those on the right. The mere possibility of Donald Trump facing possible arrest and charges for something that, at most, might result in a minor fine for a Democrat is a prime example of this disparity. Just look at Hillary Clinton.

Last year, the Federal Election Commission fined Hillary Clinton for misreporting payments made to a law firm during the 2016 campaign to hide spending. The law firm in question was Perkins Coie, which hired Fusion GPS to conduct research that resulted in the Steele Dossier, which was later used by Congress to impeach Trump. Clinton classified these expenses as “legal services” and was fined $113,000 for the misrepresentation.

“By intentionally obscuring their payments through Perkins Coie and failing to publicly disclose the true purpose of those payments,” Hillary’s presidential campaign and DNC “were able to avoid publicly reporting on their statutorily required FEC disclosure forms the fact that they were paying Fusion GPS to perform opposition research on Trump with the intent of influencing the outcome of the 2016 presidential election,” the initial complaint read per the Associated Press.

In contrast, Trump is currently facing potential felony charges for recording alleged payments made to his attorney, who then allegedly used the money to pay off porn star Stormy Daniels. These payments were originally classified as legal fees, and the legal fallout from them could be severe, despite the fact that both he and Clinton are essentially being accused of the same crime.

Trump denies the allegations, but even if they are true, Trump attempted to conceal a relationship that he did not want to become public knowledge. In contrast, Clinton and her presidential campaign commissioned the creation of a document loaded with false information in the hopes of damaging Trump’s presidential prospects. That document was subsequently used by the Obama administration to justify spying on Trump’s campaign and later served as a justification to investigate Trump over connections to Russia that simply didn’t exist.

The difference in the way these two cases were handled highlights the stark differences in legal consequences between Republicans and Democrats.

Bill Clinton Paid Paula Jones $850,000 in Hush Money — Was Never Charged

 By Cassandra MacDonald | Gateway Pundit

Former President Bill Clinton paid Paula Jones a whopping $850,000 to keep her quiet over sexual harassment claims — but was never arrested for it.

The case stands in stark contrast to reports that former President Donald Trump will be arrested on Tuesday for an alleged $130,000 hush money payment made to porn star Stormy Daniels in 2016 over an alleged sexual encounter that the two had in 2006.

Trump’s former attorney, Michael Cohen, pleaded guilty to charges over the payment in 2018 and was sentenced to three years in prison.

In 1998, the Washington Post reported:

“President Clinton reached an out-of-court settlement with Paula Jones yesterday, agreeing to pay her $850,000 to drop the sexual harassment lawsuit that led to the worst political crisis of his career and only the third presidential impeachment inquiry in American history.”

Just hours before the settlement was inked yesterday, Starr sent new evidence to the House Judiciary Committee stemming from a witness in the Jones case, Kathleen E. Willey, who also accused Clinton of an unwelcome sexual advance,” the report continued. “The extraordinary case came to an extraordinary finale, with the defendant agreeing to pay $850,000 even though the plaintiff originally only asked for $700,000 when she filed suit — and even though the case was dismissed without a trial.”

The report continued:

"The case opened a Pandora’s box of allegations about his past sex life and made him the first president ever interrogated under oath as a defendant in a civil lawsuit or before a grand jury as a possible criminal target. Jones v. Clinton also yielded a historic decision by the Supreme Court, which ruled 9 to 0 last year that even the chief executive can be sued. And it was the resulting search for evidence that led Jones’s lawyers to Monica S. Lewinsky and the chain of events that prompted Starr’s report to Congress alleging that Clinton committed 11 impeachable offenses.”

The New York Times reported in 1999:

Clinton Administration officials said a check for $850,000, the amount agreed to in November to settle the case, was being sent by overnight mail to Ms. Jones and her lawyers. The officials, who asked that their names not be used, said that a little more than half of the money, $475,000, came from an insurance policy against civil liability the President held with Chubb Group Insurance.

Most, if not all, of the remainder, was withdrawn from a blind trust in the name of Mrs. Clinton, which officials said last year had assets of slightly more than $1 million.

Clinton never faced criminal charges for his behavior.

If Trump is charged, he will be the first former president in US history to ever be arrested after leaving office. He is also the current leading contender for the Republican presidential nomination in 2024.

Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy has called for a congressional investigation into a “politically motivated prosecution.”

Here we go again — an outrageous abuse of power by a radical DA who lets violent criminals walk as he pursues political vengeance against President Trump,” McCarthy tweeted.



Jonathan Turley Destroys Manhattan DA's Case Against Trump

By Nick Arama |

Bonnie Cash/Pool via AP

The timing of the reported indictment about to drop against President Donald Trump can only be called suspicious, given the Stormy Daniels issue has been lying fallow for years, with President Donald Trump now a declared candidate for the 2024 presidential nomination.

It’s about the perp walk and the theatrics. Just like they tried the Jan. 6 Committee prior to the midterms, this is going to be the continuing thing that they will throw out there to attack Trump and the Republicans in the presidential race. It’s about the optics to move the middle/the independents away from Republicans.

But what about the legal case against Trump? George Washington law professor Jonathan Turley called it what it is: “legally pathetic.”

Although it may be politically popular, the case is legally pathetic. Bragg is struggling to twist state laws to effectively prosecute a federal case long ago rejected by the Justice Department against Trump over his payment of “hush money” to former stripper Stormy Daniels. In 2018 (yes, that is how long this theory has been around), I wrote how difficult such a federal case would be under existing election laws. Now, six years later, the same theory may be shoehorned into a state claim.

It is extremely difficult to show that paying money to cover up an embarrassing affair was done for election purposes as opposed to an array of obvious other reasons, from protecting a celebrity’s reputation to preserving a marriage. That was demonstrated by the failed federal prosecution of former presidential candidate John Edwards on a much stronger charge of using campaign funds to cover up an affair.

In this case, Trump reportedly paid Daniels $130,000 in the fall of 2016 to cut off or at least reduce any public scandal. The Southern District of New York’s U.S. Attorney’s office had no love lost for Trump, pursuing him and his associates in myriad investigations, but it ultimately rejected a prosecution based on the election law violations. It was not alone: The Federal Election Commission (FEC) chair also expressed doubts about the theory.

Prosecutors working under Bragg’s predecessor, Cyrus Vance Jr., also reportedly rejected the viability of using a New York law to effectively charge a federal offense.

 Why didn’t they bring it earlier? Because they knew that it was a tenuous case at best. They’re only pulling it out of the hat, now that 2024 is about to be upon us.

As Turley notes, even Bragg himself wasn’t hot for this case when he came in, and two prosecutors quit because Bragg was refusing to go along with this. But desperation can go a long way. Turley points out that one of the prosecutors even wrote a book trying to lay out the case against Trump, which Turley said was “shocking” because it was “unprofessional and improper.” But now, Bragg ultimately appears to have caved into Democratic pressure and is going ahead with this charade.

However, Turley also makes another important point when it comes to the question of disparity of treatment here.

While we still do not know the specific state charges in the anticipated indictment, the most-discussed would fall under Section 175 for falsifying business records, based on the claim that Trump used legal expenses to conceal the alleged hush-payments that were supposedly used to violate federal election laws. While some legal experts have insisted such concealment is clearly a criminal matter that must be charged, they were conspicuously silent when Hillary Clinton faced a not-dissimilar campaign-finance allegation.

 That was the funding of the Steele dossier, which the Clinton campaign falsely declared as a “legal expense.” The FEC fined the Clinton campaign over that false filing. Not only did her team publicly lie about it, but they also promoted the false Russia collusion claims to the FBI and the media. Yet, where is the action against Clinton or the campaign for prosecution? Strangely missing. Talk about the disparity.

Turley pointed out other issues with the prosecution.

A Section 175 charge would normally be a misdemeanor. The only way to convert it into a Class E felony requires a showing that the “intent to defraud includes an intent to commit another crime or to aid or conceal the commission thereof.” That other crime would appear to be the federal election violations which the Justice Department previously declined to charge.

The linkage to a federal offense is critical for another reason: Bragg’s office ran out of time to prosecute this as a misdemeanor years ago; the statute of limitations is two years. Even if he shows this is a viable felony charge, the longer five-year limitation could be hard to establish.

Of course, none of these legalistic problems will be relevant in the coming frenzy. It will be a case that is nothing if not entertaining, one to which you can bring your popcorn — so long as you leave your principles behind.

 “The season opener of ‘America’s Got Trump’ might be a guaranteed hit with its New York audience — but it should be a flop as a prosecution,” Turley declared.

He also pointed out the banana republic look of the action, “The criminal justice system can be a terrible weapon when used for political purposes, an all-too-familiar spectacle in countries where political foes can be targeted by the party in power.”

Of course, we also have to account for the bias of the likely very liberal jury in New York. But, if it’s truly about the law, this case is ridiculous at its base and should go down to defeat.

That’s the thing here. The continuing effort against Trump isn’t about the law, principles, or even convicting Trump. It’s always about power and how the Democrats can win, and they’ve already shown they’re willing to do anything. They may know that they will ultimately lose, and that they might even have to drop the case. But the Democrats want to utilize it to attack Trump.

This may end up galvanizing more Americans around Trump. Twitter head Elon Musk is saying if they go ahead with this, he thinks Trump wins in a landslide. We’re already seeing some of those who were on the fence, now saying they would support Trump because of this action. We’ll have to see, but he just may be right.


Defiant Trump Gets Standing Ovation at Wrestling Event, Appears Unfazed by Possible Indictment

By Bob Hoge |

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

If former President Donald Trump is nervous about his potential indictment next week by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, he’s not showing it, strutting confidently into Tulsa’s BOK Center to watch the NCAA Wrestling Championships. The crowd stood and cheered as The Donald, wearing his usual long red tie, waved and raised his fist.


Trump’s sunny disposition is in stark contrast to his earlier postings, which, as RedState’s Bonchie reported, lambasted the “CORRUPT & HIGHLY POLITICAL MANHATTAN DISTRICT ATTORNEYS [sic] OFFICE” who he accused of politicizing his office by targeting “THE FAR & AWAY LEADING REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE & FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, [who] WILL BE ARRESTED ON TUESDAY OF NEXT WEEK.”

The preposterous case, which federal prosecutors have refused to take up in the past, involves $130,000 hush money Trump paid to porn performer Stormy Daniels in 2016 to allegedly keep her quiet about an affair.

The real question is, who cares? We’re possibly inching toward nuclear war, inflation is rampant and banks are failing, Bragg’s own city is turning into a cesspool of violence and crime—and he’s choosing to focus on a possible affair and payoff by a former president? Trump has consistently denied that he and Daniels ever had a physical relationship.

As for Bragg, he’s acting defiant as well, issuing a letter Saturday to employees laughably claiming that his office applies the law “evenly and fairly.” Read RedState Managing Editor Jennifer Van Laar’s takedown of that ridiculous statement.

As many including Elon Musk have pointed out, if the Manhattan DA does indeed go ahead and arrest Trump, it could give the already-announced candidate a huge leg up in the 2024 presidential election. As Nick Arama reported, Musk tweeted simply: “If this happens, Trump will win in a landslide.”

Why? Because Americans have watched a growing trend of the politicization of our systems of justice in this country, notably with President Biden’s punitive and partisan DOJ. Meanwhile, at the local level, soft-on-crime district attorneys like Bragg and Los Angeles’ George Gascon appear to have no interest in prosecuting criminals.

In the summer of 2022, for instance, a 61-year-old bodega worker was viciously attacked in New York City but managed to grab a knife and kill his assailant. As he was doing so, he himself was stabbed three times by the perp’s girlfriend. Alvin Bragg’s response? He charged the bodega worker with 2nd-degree murder—but he refused to charge the woman who stabbed him three times, claiming she was acting in self-defense.

You can’t make this stuff up. He later dropped the charges against the worker, but they never should have been made in the first place.

This is the same guy who’s trying to nail a former president on flimsy charges of breaking campaign finance law. George Washington law professor Jonathan Turley mocked the case, writing, “although it may be politically popular, the case is legally pathetic.

The fact is, Trump’s appearance at a wrestling event normally wouldn’t make the news on a Saturday night. However, his name is all the place this evening, thanks to Alvin Bragg. As the old saying goes, no publicity is bad pulicity.

Trump certainly doesn’t look too worried:



The TRUMP PAGE @MichaelDeLauzon

President Trump standing with Melania’s father in Tulsa tonight.


Many who don’t even particularly care for Trump can still see that this case is another in a long line of partisan, politicized attempts at “gotcha” by a string of local and federal prosecutors and even the United States Senate—all of whom keep failing spectacularly. Is this the case that’s finally going to bring him down? Are the “walls closing in?”

I’ve heard that before.


McCarthy Throws Down the Gauntlet at Manhattan DA — 'Abuse of Power' Against Trump

By Nick Arama |

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

It’s a good thing that the Republicans already have the House Weaponization Committee up and ready to go because it looks like they may have to take on their most important charge to date: dealing with the political action to try to take out President Donald Trump. They’ve seen all kinds of bias so far, when it comes to complaints about things like the FBI. But this is going to be next level, as the Democrats ramp up the effort to take out Trump before the 2024 race.

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy is not taking the threat of a Democratic DA getting an indictment against Trump lightly. After the news broke about a reported indictment, McCarthy announced that he was directing House committees to investigate whether federal funds are being used to “subvert our democracy by interfering in elections with politically motivated prosecutions.”

McCarthy also called out the effort to get Trump specifically.

“Here we go again — an outrageous abuse of power by a radical DA who lets violent criminals walk as he pursues political vengeance against President Trump,” McCarthy tweeted.

Democrats throw around the terms like “subvert democracy” lightly, for everything, in their smears of Republicans. But when you’re trying to politically prosecute a political opponent, the term is pretty much on target.

In this case, where the Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg is such a leftist that he regularly downgrades the prosecution of real crimes, the move to upgrade this charge against Trump stands out, as we reported earlier. Even Fox’s John Roberts noticed the glaring disparity in how Bragg approaches things — and McCarthy made that point as well.

While McCarthy’s actions wouldn’t stop Bragg from going forward, he’s sending a clear message to Bragg and the other Democrats that they’re not just going to ride right over the Republicans in their mad dash to get Trump. He’s throwing down a bit of a gauntlet at Bragg, and who knows what that investigation may turn up. They will no doubt point out any disparity that they see going on in this matter and will trumpet it loud for everyone to see.

Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) was already asking the question, “How much federal funding does the Manhattan DA’s office receive?” No doubt there will be more calls to see what they can do to respond to this, and it’s likely to galvanize more Republicans.

The Democrats likely hope that this move is going to help them do in Trump and catapult whomever their candidate ultimately is to victory. Yet, as I said earlier, they may be overplaying their hands. Elon Musk predicted that this will result in a landslide for Trump, if the Democrats go down this road. Already, folks who might have been on the fence when it comes to who to vote for are now saying this is pushing them to Trump.

So, they may just have shot themselves in the foot with this move. It isn’t going to stop Trump from running in the meantime — and it may just be very helpful to him, bringing more people and more money to his side.