Skip to content
Search AI Powered

Latest Stories

Why Comey’s Evidence Is Enough for an Obstruction of Justice Case Against Trump

Why Comey’s Evidence Is Enough for an Obstruction of Justice Case Against Trump

In a surprise move, Wednesday evening the Senate Intelligence Committee posted former FBI Director James Comey's prepared opening remarks online, the night before he was set to appear in front of the committee at a public hearing in the Trump Russia probe.

In his remarks, Comey documents several meetings with President Trump, during which Trump asked for his loyalty, asked him to drop the case against former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, and made Comey suitably uncomfortable that he felt compelled to document every interaction he had with the President.


Particularly damning for Trump is Comey's recollection of their February 14th meeting, during which Trump asked him to drop the probe into Flynn:

"I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go."

And then an April 11th phone call during which Trump asked Comey how to make public that he was not under investigation:

'Because I have been very loyal to you, very loyal; we had that thing you know.' I did not reply or ask him what he meant by 'that thing.' I said only that the way to handle it was to have the White House Counsel call the Acting Deputy Attorney General. He said that was what he would do and the call ended."

Many feel that what Comey reveals in his opening testimony alone is grounds for an obstruction of justice case against Donald Trump.

In a Washington Post Op-Ed Thursday morning, Philip Allen Lacovara, former counsel to Watergate special prosecutors, draws a direct comparison between Trump's actions and Richard Nixon:

Comey proved what Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats and National Security Agency Director Michael S. Rogers carefully avoided admitting in their testimony on Wednesday — that the president had specifically attempted to shut off at least a major piece of what Trump calls the “Russia thing,” the investigation into the misleading statements by fired national security adviser Michael Flynn concerning his role in dealings with the Russians. This kind of presidential intervention in a pending criminal investigation has not been seen, to my knowledge, since the days of Richard Nixon and Watergate.

Former ethics czar under President Obama, Norm Eisen, concurs, saying on CNN that "This moves us into the same realm as Nixon's obstruction, maybe worse."

This is an important comparison since the first article of impeachment drawn up against Nixon, which ultimately led to his resignation from office, was obstruction of justice.

Lacovara concludes:

Comey’s statement lays out a case against the president that consists of a tidy pattern, beginning with the demand for loyalty, the threat to terminate Comey’s job, the repeated requests to turn off the investigation into Flynn and the final infliction of career punishment for failing to succumb to the president’s requests, all followed by the president’s own concession about his motive. Any experienced prosecutor would see these facts as establishing a prima facie case of obstruction of justice.

Rep. Adam Schiff, ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, said on CBS News this morning that "If you were prosecuting a case of obstruction, you would admit the entirety of James Comey's testimony."

Or as Schiff put it on Twitter:

Chris Hayes summed up where we are ahead of Comey's testimony:

Comey's testimony in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee is set to begin at 10:00AM on Thursday, June 8 and will be streamed live here.

More from People

Screenshots of Kamala Harris and J.D. Vance
C-SPAN; NBC News

Kamala Harris Calls Out JD Vance For 'What He Didn't Say' During RNC Speech In Epic Takedown

In a fiery speech to supporters in North Carolina, Vice President Kamala Harris called out what J.D. Vance—former President Donald Trump's freshly selected running mate—"didn't say" in his speech accepting the VP nomination on Night 3 of the Republican National Convention.

Amid much talk about key conservative issues like immigration, the ongoing border crisis, and "law and order," he did not once mention what the GOP has explicitly laid out and is now attempting to distance itself from: Project 2025.

Keep ReadingShow less
Screenshot of Daniel Dale; Donald Trump
CNN; Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

CNN Fact-Checker Debunks Trump's RNC Speech Lies For 2 Minutes Straight—And Yeah, It's A Lot

CNN fact-checker Daniel Dale debunked lies former President Donald Trump told during his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention, dedicating two minutes to picking apart Trump's many falsehoods.

Trump made numerous oddball remarks during his speech, particularly his reference that the world was "at peace" when he was in office until his political opponents "turned it into a planet of war," declaring that the planet is now "blowing up around us" due to Democratic policies.

Keep ReadingShow less
Screenshots of Donald Trump and Tiffany Trump
C-SPAN

Trump Snubbed Daughter Tiffany As She Went In For A Kiss At The RNC—And People Are Team Tiffany

Social media users were sympathetic to Tiffany Trump after her father, former President Donald Trump, appeared to snub her as she went in for a kiss before his climactic speech accepting the GOP's presidential nomination.

Footage from early in the evening shows a smiling Tiffany walking up the stairs toward Trump, who clearly saw her. She then attempted to greet him with a kiss only to be ignored, as he looked out at the crowd beyond her, as she walked away looking dejected.

Keep ReadingShow less
Picture of Marjorie Taylor Greene seen on "The Daily Show" with Jon Stewart
The Daily Show

Jon Stewart Just Pointed Out The Weird Noise MTG Made During Her RNC Speech—And Now We Can't Unhear It

Jon Stewart had a lot to unpack on Tuesday's airing of The Daily Show, given a wild week that included the shocking assassination attempt on former Republican President Donald Trump as well as the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee, which kicked off on Monday.

One specific highlight from the opening night of the RNC that Jon couldn't help but fixate on was far-right Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene making strange sounds while addressing delegates during her speech.

Keep ReadingShow less
Justin Long and wife Kate Bosworth
Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for Smile Train

Justin Long Shares Wife Kate Bosworth's 'Really Romantic' Reaction To Him Pooping The Bed

Warning: soiler alert. Graphic bowel movement descriptions ahead.

Actor Justin Long had a romantic e-poo-phany about how much he loved his wife, actor Kate Bosworth, when he soiled the bed after suffering from food poisoning during a trip to Mexico.

Keep ReadingShow less