Will President Trump agree to just show up?

By Reade Brower | May 10, 2018

It’s best to find common sense in any negotiation, and that starts with finding common ground.

With President Trump’s supporters and detractors, the common ground is that we need to put the Mueller investigation in the rearview mirror, so he can run and protect the country, while quieting some of the acrimony.

Calling it a “witch hunt,” insisting – over and over and over – that there is no proof of collusion, and blaming it all on “fake news” does nothing to put closure to it. As it enters its second year, it is time to finish up.

By way of comparison, it took almost three years to fully investigate Nixon and Watergate before concluding malfeasance that led to exile for our president and jail terms for several others. In the Clinton era, Special Counsel Kenneth Starr investigated for nearly two years before shutting down, with no indictments to show for it.

On the other hand, in about a year, Mueller is deep into this and has issued indictments in the double digits. We may still see collusion or obstruction of justice charges filed before it's over.

To end this, a “huge” step would be for Trump to answer the bell and testify in front of Mueller’s people. It is that simple, but it isn’t happening because Trump, it appears, has adopted a strategy of deflect and protest.

This doesn’t move towards the closure that all sides say they want.

Mr. President; you protest too much – it’s time to show up to get the “witch hunt” over. It is in your control. If you won’t, you’re basically pleading the Fifth Amendment, playing dodge ball with the truth, and asking justice to wait.

If that is the strategy -- stay in the bunker, continue to double- and triple-down with your truth, and batter opponents with insults, keeping your rabid base stirred up and by your side.

If instead, you want this to end, take on a strategy that will accomplish that.

It’s called “transparency,” and it happens only when truth and facts lead the way.

To start with, share your tax returns  with the American people; not the ones being audited, but any that have already been through audits or are not currently in the audit process. That would help prove no collusion with Russia.

Without your tax returns, your constant “believe me, there is no collusion proved” is tempered by the missing word “yet.” It falls on deaf ears, at least outside your base of supporters. Many would join the bandwagon of "enough" if you were to share your tax returns, as all modern presidents have done, and agree to testify in front of Mueller’s people.

Your supporters and lawyers claim privacy and it’s just a bad idea to testify under oath, with penalties for perjury being serious. Your antagonists believe you are hiding something and only the truth can set you free.

Getting to the truth is the crux; how long it takes depends on how thorough the investigation is – most Americans would agree that thorough is good.

In the meantime, implosions continue on several fronts.

Trump’s legal team continues to erode, as Ty Cobb is “retiring.” His new personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, is mucking up the works with ill-advised comments about Trump's paying back another personal attorney, Michael Cohen, in regard to Stormy Daniels, before being scolded by Trump as being misinformed.

Trump’s longtime personal doctor, Harold Bornstein, speaks about an office raid, and the taking of Trump’s health records, in February of 2017 by a Trump bodyguard, a Trump lawyer and “one other man,” describing the incident as making him feel “raped, frightened and sad.”

Bornstein also gave the media nuggets about statements he had issued before the election; “If elected, Mr. Trump, I can state unequivocally, will be the healthiest individual ever elected to the presidency.” Turns out that statement, and the campaign’s issuance that Bornstein said “his health is excellent, especially his mental health” were phony; recently telling CNN “He [Trump] dictated that whole letter. I didn’t write that letter.”

All of this leads to one conclusion: we need the Mueller probe to run its course, no matter how long it takes. The truth will be satisfied by allowing facts to dictate how the narrative ends. The strategy of muddying the waters, deflection and whining is tantamount to “thou protest too much.”

Let’s get this over, Mr. President; testify under oath.

“Man can be the most affectionate and altruistic of creatures, yet he’s potentially more vicious than any other. He is the only one who can be persuaded to hate millions of his own kind whom he has never seen and to kill as many as he can lay his hands on in the name of his tribe or his God.”

--- Benjamin Spock, pediatrician and author (1903-1998)

Comments (3)
Posted by: patrick quinn | May 14, 2018 06:54

Thank you for bringing the truth to bear. Life expectancy has decreased along with the American IQ. Hang on for the roller coaster ride.


Posted by: Mary A McKeever | May 10, 2018 15:35

Did he buy the presidency? Certainly he is not qualified, but probably qualified to be labeled a certified con man, perhaps?

Posted by: Ronald Horvath | May 10, 2018 09:56

"One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we've been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. The bamboozle has captured us. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back."  -Carl Sagan

“If people are taking the word of a reality TV star turned politician with an extensive, and highly provable, track record of lying over that of a man with a decorated history of service to our country who was personally trusted by Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama, it’s because they’re choosing what they want to believe. If 32%-35% of Americans are willing to disregard facts that they don’t like then Trump is just a symptom of something much worse to come."  -Tucker Benedict, https://www.facebook.com/TuckerBenedict/

“As night fall does not come all at once, neither does oppression.  In both instances there is a twilight when everything remains seemingly unchanged.  And it is in such twilight that we all must be most aware of change in the air -however slight- lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness.”  -William O. Douglas

“Trump is beyond narcissism.  I used to think that Trump was a eleven year old, an undeveloped schoolyard bully.  I was off by about 10 years.  His needs are more primitive,  an infantile hunger for approval and praise,  a craving that can never be satisfied.  He lives in a cocoon of solipsism where the world outside himself has value -indeed exists-  only insofar as it sustains and inflates him."  -Charles Krauthammer

"A Fascist is one whose lust for money or power is combined with such an intensity of intolerance toward those of other races, parties, classes, religions, cultures, regions, or nations as to make him ruthless in his use of deceit or violence to attain his ends."  -Henry A. Wallace

"Like some kind of Shakespearean villain-clown, Trump plays not to the gallery but to the pit. He is a Falstaff without the humour or the self-awareness, a cowardly, bullying Richard III without a clue. Late-night US satirists find in this an unending source of high comedy. If they did not laugh, they would cry. The world is witnessing the dramatic unfolding of a tragedy whose main victims are a seemingly helpless American audience, America’s system of balanced governance and its global reputation as a leading democratic light."

“Reluctantly I have concluded that President Trump is a serious threat to US national security. He is refusing to protect vital US interests from active Russian attacks. It is apparent that he is for some unknown reason under the sway of Mr Putin.”  -Retired Gen. Barry McCaffrey, adjunct professor at West Point, 16 Mar 2018

"President Trump is either totally compromised by the Russians or is a towering fool, or both, but either way he has shown himself unwilling or unable to defend America against a Russian campaign to divide and undermine our democracy...  This is code red. The biggest threat to the integrity of our democracy today is in the Oval Office."  -Thomas Friedman

"When the full extent of your venality, moral turpitude, and political corruption becomes known, you will take your rightful place as a disgraced demagogue in the dustbin of history," he wrote. "You may scapegoat Andy McCabe, but will not destroy America... America will triumph over you."  -John Brennan,  former director of the Central Intelligence Agency

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