191

Donald Trump was just indicted…but why?

Kit Knightly

Some people really hate campaign finance violations

Last night it was announced that former-President Donald Trump was being indicted by the Manhattan Grand Jury, he is expected to surrender himself to authorities later today.

The indictment is sealed until arraignment, but we do know the rough nature of the charge(s). Essentially, the accusation is that he paid “hush money” to pornographic actress Stormy Daniels to prevent her from going to the press. CNN is abuzz with anonymous sources “familiar with the case” who are predicting 30-plus charges related fraud, but all that’s really known is that it concerns Daniels’ hush money.

Hush money, in itself, is not technically illegal, but if it could be established that campaign funds were used to make the payment, and Trump knew about it, it would be a felony campaign finance violation.

Yes, a campaign finance violation. That’s all. Much smaller names have had much bigger crimes swept under the rug.

Hell, Hillary Clinton’s campaign was found guilty of the same exact crime over their commissioning the ridiculous “Steele Dossier”. No arrests, just a fine…and they were literally trying to spread misinformation to swing an election.

So why can we expect to see Trump’s mugshot on the front cover of every newspaper tomorrow? Why is Donald Trump the first President to ever be indicted, and not, say, Richard Nixon or George Bush jr?

Well, there are two schools of thought on that subject, or rather two competing narratives.

The liberal media/democrat/Twitter crowd story is that Donald Trump is a dangerous-quasi dictator who attempted a coup in January 2021 and that he should be punished and persecuted for any possible crime in any conceivable way to ensure he never comes anywhere near political power ever again, lest he turn into Literally Hitler.

The Republican/Fox News story is that Joe Biden’s administration – and the political establishment in general – is conducting a witchhunt against Trump to either prevent his running for President in 2024, or so discredit him with the electorate that he cannot win.

Which of these stories is true? Well, neither. Or at least, neither make any sense.

The former is clearly the kind of deranged thinking we’ve all become accustomed to since 2015 first introduced us to Orange Man Bad, and I will waste no time refuting it again.

But the latter is likewise illogical – even if it is at least comparatively grounded in the real world – failing to account for (and/or deliberately ignoring) two important things:

  1. Trump’s base will never desert him over this, because they believe it’s a witchhunt. If anything this will solidify his following in certain spheres because it reinforces his “anti-establishment” bona fides.
  2. The 2024 Presidential election will be fixed, just like 2020 was.

A more subtle analysis might suggest Trump is being used as a convenient scapegoat to normalise the idea of criminal persecution of political opponents, and while there is probably a little truth to that, it still gives the narrative too much credit, it cedes too much reality to the story.

Because that’s all it is, a story. Political theatre, emphasis very much on the theatre. You know it is, because the Guardian specifically said it wasn’t.

It will entrench both sides, create division and fuel bitter online debates. It will be used to reinforce the illusion of difference between the political parties, or sell the idea that the system works and no one is above the law. To act as fertiliser for more stories down the road, be they further criminal proceedings against Trump, or another “violent insurrection”. Maybe both.

I can guarantee that neither side will be allowed a clean win. Trump won’t be convicted completely, nor will he be exonerated.

If he’s cleared it will be on a technicality, so Republicans can celebrate while Dems can bleat about a broken justice system or how “Trump would be in prison if he was black”. If he’s convicted his sentence will be nothing but a fine, and he won’t be barred from running for office, or he’ll get it overturned by appeal.

It won’t end, it will just keep building on itself. An eternal circus, full of infinite clowns in a neverending pie fight. Pick a side if you want, but you’ll never get anything but messy.

Meanwhile, the real problems persist. The real policies endangering ordinary people – and pushed by Republicans and Democrats alike – will continue to spread. A prison being built up around us.

So, why was Trump indicted?

To give people something to talk about.

SUPPORT OFFGUARDIAN

If you enjoy OffG's content, please help us make our monthly fund-raising goal and keep the site alive.

For other ways to donate, including direct-transfer bank details click HERE.