Dorothy’s hunt for the Wicked Witch of the West Wing continues. Today was not a decisive day one way or another that many anticipated or hoped for. No knockout punch was delivered. No knock downs occurred. The bucket of water has not been thrown. The time for singing “Ding Dong the Witch Is Dead” has not arrived. The waiting continues.
Regardless of any legal principles involved, there is great skepticism that a wealthy white male can ever can be brought to justice anyway. In this particular case, there also is great skepticism about this individual ever even being charged with a crime given the numerous times before there has been a feeding frenzy about his imminent indictment that never seems to happen.
What can be said given the events of the last few days?
GEORGIA ON MY MIND
Although no names were mentioned in the report released today, it is still several conclusions still can be reached.
1. There are named people in the portions not released.
2. Some if not all of them are going to be indicted.
3. The release of that report and the indicting of those individuals seems imminent, as in days and not weeks or months.
4. Besides the indictments directly related to the attempt to steal the election, there also will be charges of perjury. Apparently the equivalent of a jury in numbers and as a cross-section of the community already determined that one or more people lied under oath. This development adds a new wrinkle to the proceedings. It puts witnesses on notice that no matter how clever they and their lawyers are in crafting dishonest answers, a jury is quite capable of discerning that dishonesty. That means regardless of the charges announced at the beginning of the trial, additional charges may be generated during the course of the trial. Perjury charges put witnesses on notice that when they think they are being crafty they may in fact be digging themselves deeper into a financial and legal hole. That may encourage more people to plead the 5th or to not even testify in their own defense.
We are getting closer to the first moment of truth. There is a lot to be said for not indicting the Wicked Witch of the West Wing in the initial indictments. That minimizes his ability to slow things down with frivolous lawsuits that courts are weary of since he has not been indicted. It also allows time for the people charged for a crime initiated at the hand of the Wicked Witch of the West Wing to re-assess their willingness to pay the price for the crime while he escapes scot free. The saga continues.
THE BELTWAY HIGH SPEED CHASE
Meanwhile in Washington, the investigation of the Wicked Witch of the West Wing appears to be barreling along. Like the January 6 House Select Committee, it too, has a deadline. The campaign for 2024 already is underway. Speaking now as a civilian, I would say Smith has until this summer to put up or shut up – at least for Mar-a-Largogate.
Still, things seem to be happening even if we don’t know all the details. Subpoenas have been issued for the former Vice President and Chief of Staff. That means in typical Mafioso case fashion, the prosecution has worked his way up the chain of command until he has now reached the inner circle. The Flying Monkeys are having their wings clipped. Soon they will be sitting ducks. It will be like shooting fish in a barrel if I may mix my metaphors.
One might suspect that some of the secret cases now before the judges may involve people we have not heard much about lately. People like Steve Bannon. People like Scott Perry. People like John Eastman. People like Jeffrey Clark. Some of them may be snagged in the Georgia case.
Here is where there will be a lot of doubt about whether a wealthy white man can be held to justice even if he is not the President.
BARR AND DURHAM MADE A MOCKERY OF THE RULES I WROTE
So wrote Neal Katyal in an op-ed piece in The New York Times today. He seems irked to say the least about how the rules for the Special Counsel have been trashed by these two individuals. With Barr, the politicization of the Department of Justice by the President has been well-known since even before the Mueller report was issued. That in itself raises three immediate questions:
1. Will the House Republicans who claim to be interested in the corruption of the politicization of the Department of Justice even investigate these people? – Unlikely no matter how much the Democrats push for it. On the other hand, the Inspector General seems like a better path to investigation.
2. Will the current Attorney General act against John Durham following the guidelines presented by Neal Katyal in his op-ed piece? – This is quite possible. Durham is obligated to produce a final report anyway. At this point, Durham may realize that he has sacrificed a lifetime of credibility and reputation as a reputable investigator and now has only one chance to salvage his tattered legacy.
3. What will happen to the ten obstruction charges identified by Mueller and obscured by Barr? There is no problem about indicting a sitting President any more. As in the previous item, Merrick Garland has a decision to make.
Despite the hullabaloo about the events today over the Georgia case and the revelation of new subpoenas for people very high up in the criminal conspiracy and for the secret cases, there still is a great deal of uncertainty about what will happen. In the meantime, the clock keeps ticking; and there are limits to human patience. If these investigations turn into Ph.D. theses that take forever to complete, then by the time they are done, the country will have moved on.