Finally, the obsequious Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has said something about Donald Trump that has a least a smidgen of truth to it.
While talking to reporters in the halls of Congress today, Senator Graham offered a defense of Trump similar to what kept Special Counsel Robert Mueller from indicting the president’s eldest son for violating campaign finance laws after the details of the infamous Trump Tower meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya were revealed.
In that case, according to reasoning presented in the Mueller report, the special counsel declined to prosecute Donald Jr. because the investigators “did not obtain admissible evidence likely to meet the government’s burden to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that these individuals acted “willfully,” i.e. with general knowledge of the illegality of their conduct.” Put less kindly, Mueller was saying in essence that the reason Don Jr. got away without being charged is that the special counsel’s office didn’t think that they could convince a jury that Trump Jr. was smart enough to know what he was doing was patently illegal.
Since that defense worked so well for the son, Senator Graham tried to use a substantially equivalent defense of the president’s actions in regard to his extortionary quid pro quo with Ukraine to hold up military assistance unless that country’s government agreed to cooperate in his bogus corruption investigation meant to target his most threatening political rival former Vice President Joe Biden.
“What I can tell you about the Trump policy towards the Ukraine, it was incoherent. It depends on who you talk to,” Graham told reporters.
“They seem to be incapable of forming a quid pro quo,” the senator’s blatantly blunt evaluation continued.
Senator Graham has little else to fall back on in his quiver of presidential defenses at this stage of the impeachment investigation.
Having already declared that he will refuse to read the transcripts of the testimony of the now-multiple administration officials who have admitted to the existence of a quid pro quo in Trump’s foreign policy towards the former Soviet republic, Graham can’t rely on the facts of the matter.
His attempts to declare that the administration is too incompetent to execute a quid pro quo arrangement has just enough of the ring of truth to it that people who don’t follow the news closely may actually accept it as a reasonable excuse for the president.
Graham’s strategy perhaps doesn’t go far enough, however.
If he really wants to come up with an excuse that will convince people, he should have gone straight to the insanity defense.
Now that’s an excuse that will be hard to disprove.
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Vinnie Longobardo is a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music and art.