Teri Kanefield+ Your Authors @Teri_Kanefield Author, lawyer (UC Berkeley) My threads are here: terikanefield-blog.com/ NBC News Opinion contributor Impeachment notes: impeachment-trump.com/ Mar. 23, 2019 1 min read + Your Authors

(Thread) Let’s suppose that Mueller did find evidence of a Trump-Russia conspiracy.

Why, then, no more indictments (from Mueller)?

I've talked about how Mueller has been handing off evidence of crimes to other offices.

But what if Trump or Trump family is implicated?

1/ Why, then, no indictments from Mueller?

Most legal authorities agree that a sitting president can be indicted.
But what happens after the indictment?

Remember that we have a presumption of innocence. Guilt is proven at trial.

2/ I see many problems in putting a sitting president on trial and removing him from office via an ordinary criminal court.

First problem: The Constitution offers a procedure for what to do if a president is suspected of criminal activity . . .

3/ Circumventing that procedure means doing an end run around a constitutional requirement—which isn’t a good idea.

To illustrate the second problem consider this hypothetical: The year is 2012 and West Virginia hates Obama and wants to remove him from office.

4/ WV finds a criminal statute on their books that they claim Obama violated. They have jurisdiction because they link the crime to the time he spent in WV. They indict Obama. They find him guilty. They demand that he be turned over to WV for incarceration.

See the problem?

5/ That’s why the drafters of the Constitution wanted this to happen in Congress.

If Mueller found evidence of a Trump-Russia conspiracy, turning the matter over to Congress is [probably] the correct thing to do.

If he found that Trump family members are implicated . . .

6/ . . . it would seem to me that Mueller would not want that matter handled in a regular criminal court.

Suppose Jr. and Ivanka act as mere extensions of Trump. I just can't see them in a regular criminal court without a major media circus that ended up completely politicized.

7/ So, in that case, I could see Mueller turning any TrumpRussia matters over to Congress.

Routine corruption in the Trump Org, on the other hand, goes to New York.


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