Monday, July 17, 2017

Blumenthal's Intent

U.S. Senator Dick Blumenthal thinks Donald Trump Jr. may have colluded with Russian operatives to deny Hillary Clinton the presidency. Other leading Democrats have asserted that President Donald Trump is a traitor. Blumenthal believes that recent emails may demonstrate "bombshell evidence of criminal intent" on the part of Trump Jr.

But then, Blumenthal believes lots of things. There was a time when he believed he had served as a marine in Vietnam, but he didn’t.

In the absence of a crime, there can be no criminal intent – just unfulfilled intent. There is little question that Trump Jr. and other Trump operatives intended to receive and possibly make use of promised data dirt damaging to Hillary Clinton when the Trump amateur opposition research team met with a Russian lawyer who failed to deliver the dirt.

Secretary of State Clinton was once a party to a deal involving the sale of Uranium One to Russia. The sale gave Putin’s Russia control of 20% of the uranium deposits in the U.S. and could not have been consummated without approval from Clinton’s State Department. The Clinton Foundation received millions from Uranium One. Would it be proper to assume from Blumenthal’s telling silence following the deal that no collusion was involved in the exchange, not to mention criminal intent?

While no dirty data passed from the presumed Kremlin connected operative to the Trump opposition research team during the meeting, Trump operatives are by no means off the hook. Charles Krauthammer correctly characterizes the meeting as a “stupid…deeply wrong…unconsummated collusion” that will breathe new life into what some regard as hysterically exaggerated charges.

Thoughts on the possible traitorous activity of Trump are politically opportune, which makes them highly suspect. If Trump were a traitor, he could be impeached and then prosecuted for his traitorous activities, whatever Democrats suppose they may be. But the intended impeachment of the president may be only a half serious venture.

Blumenthal also thinks Trump has violated the emolument clause of the U.S. Constitution and is said to be leading a suit against the president. The object of the suit may not be to win in court but to maintain, perhaps until the next election, a black cloud above Trump’s head.

Trump, it should be said, is partly responsible for those thunderheads. His understanding of Russian President Vladimir Putin is primitive and naive. The same might be said – though not by Blumenthal -- of former President Barack Obama and his Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, who presented Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov with a silly reset-button in addition to a good deal of American uranium.

The presentation of the re-set button aroused some amusement at the time, according to a 2009 CNN  report:
 "I would like to present you with a little gift that represents what President Obama and Vice President Biden and I have been saying and that is: 'We want to reset our relationship, and so we will do it together.'...
"We worked hard to get the right Russian word. Do you think we got it?" she asked Lavrov, laughing.
“You got it wrong," said Lavrov, as both diplomats laughed.
“It should be “perezagruzka” [the Russian word for reset]," said Lavrov."This says ‘peregruzka,’ which means ‘overcharged.’”

Perhaps Hillary Clinton’s greatest gift to Putin was unvetted information, some of which was top secret, she had compiled on an illegal and unsecured server that was later hacked by someone, possibly Russian connected operatives. If this kind of behavior ever caused the conspiracy cop in Blumenthal to flash his lights and pull Clinton off to the side of the road, it was not obvious from anything he said at the time Clinton was delivering to possible Russian operatives the TNT Blumenthal believes blew up her campaign.     

Trump very likely will get some of his important measures past the Republican dominated U.S. Congress. Deregulation and tax reform are likely to produce positive results in Connecticut: an increase in jobs, a decrease in the unemployment rate and greater prosperity arising from increased business activity. Trump’s effort to boost military spending will replenish some of Connecticut’s declining revenues.

Known as “The Provision State” since the American Revolution, Connecticut is heavily invested in the production of military goods. Neither Blumenthal nor U.S. Senator Chris Murphy, both formidable critics of the president, will very much mind increased spending on the U.S. military which had been severely reduced under the administration of President Barack Obama. One cannot imagine either Blumenthal or Murphy voting against more submarines made in Groton, more helicopters made in Shelton or more jet engines made in East Hartford.

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