The Travesties of the Trump Trials

Victor Davis Hanson
American Greatness

Do not believe the White House/mainstream media-concocted narrative that the four criminal court cases—prosecuted by Alvin Bragg, Letitia James, Jack Smith, and Fani Willis—were not in part coordinated, synchronized, and timed to reach their courtroom psychodramatic finales right during the 2024 campaign season.

These local, state, and federal Lilliputian agendas were designed to tie down, gag, confine, bankrupt, and destroy Trump psychologically and physically. They are the final lawfare denouement to years of extra-legal efforts to emasculate him.

Indeed, the nation is by now worn out by these serial assaults on constitutional norms: the Hillary-funded Steele dossier subterfuge; the pre-election Russian laptop disinformation campaign; the two impeachments without special counsel reports; the impeachment Senate trial of a private citizen; the effort to remove Trump’s name from state ballots; the ongoing attempt to emasculate the Electoral College; or the radical opportune changes in state election laws to ensure massive mail-in balloting.

Recently, Andrew McCarthy has reviewed in depth this coordination between White House personnel and prosecutors, long known and long denied by the left. Biden, for example, had complained to aides about Attorney General Merrick Garland’s tardiness in getting special federal prosecutor Smith appointed—and thus apparently ensuring Trump was convicted before the election.

Nathan Wade, Fani Willis’s now-fired paramour prosecutor, visited and consulted with the White House counsel’s office when he was acting supposedly as a purely local county prosecutor. The January 6th left-wing-dominated congressional committee consulted with the Biden administration in sending forth its criminal referrals about Trump’s purported role in the protests. And to handle his pseudo-indictment against Trump, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg hired Biden Justice Department official Vincent Colangeio.

Two, the prosecutors’ delayed criminal indictments and E. Jean Carroll’s civil suit were predicated only on Donald Trump running for reelection. After his 2020 defeat, the loss of the two Republican senate seats in Georgia, and the January 6 demonstrations/riot, Trump was written off by pundits as politically toxic.

Then his historic comeback in the subsequent year terrified the left. The reboot prompted the subsequent indictments and suits years after the purported crimes. It was left unsaid that had Trump not been a conservative Republican and leading presidential candidate, he would have never been indicted.

Three, most of the indictments either had no prior precedent in criminal law or will likely never be used again, at least against anyone left-wing. Moreover, many of the writs relied on manipulation of statutes of limitations.

Neither Bragg nor any other local prosecutor had previously transformed a supposedly local affidavit misdemeanor into a supposed federal campaign finance violation, a gambit so preposterous that it had been passed on by federal attorneys.

Letitia James was the first New York Attorney General to indict a state resident for the supposed crime of overvaluing real estate to obtain a loan, which was paid back timely and in full, to the profit of lending institutions. No bank, after auditing Trump’s assets and viability to pay back loans, was unhappy to loan to him. But all were quite happy to profit from the hefty interest—and would likely be happy to loan to him again.

James sought to make Trump a criminal without ever finding a crime, much less a victim. Nor, until the checkered and unethical career of Fani Willis, had any local prosecutor ever indicted an ex-president for a supposedly improper phone call questioning whether all the state’s votes had been fully counted.

Alvin Bragg’s case was nonexistent given the statute of limitations on supposed misdemeanors committed over six years prior—until Bragg transmogrified the accusations of minor crimes into felonies and, with them, extensions granted supposedly due to the COVID lockdowns.

In Carroll’s case, her unsubstantiated accusations of a sexual assault were also well past the statute of limitations until a left-wing New York legislator and unapologetic Trump hater passed a special law—a veritable bill of attainder aimed at Trump—waiving the statute of limitations for a year in cases of accusations of long-past sexual assault in the state of New York.

Four, all the indictments and suits took place in either blue cities, counties, or states. And most of the jury pools in or near New York, Atlanta, or Miami were or will be heavily Democrat. So far, the New York judges who have overseen Trump’s civil and criminal trials—Justices Engoron, Kaplan, and Merchan—were all liberals, appointed by Democrat or liberal politicians, and some have donated to Democrat causes. They were not shy about expressing disdain for defendant Trump. No changes in venues were ever allowed.

Five, all the prosecutors, Bragg, James, Smith, and Willis, are likewise either Democrats or associated with liberal causes. In the case of Bragg, James, and Willis, all three ran for office and raised money on promises and boasts of getting Donald Trump. And all three have now set the precedent that local and state prosecutors can warp the law and use it to go after an ex-president and leading presidential candidate of the opposite party for naked political purposes.

Six, all these cases were equally applicable to high-profile Democrat politicos. E. Jean Carroll’s defamation suit was the most laughable of all the court dramas, but its outline and protocols just as easily could have applied to Tara Reade. She came forward to accuse candidate Biden of having sexually assaulted her years earlier—roughly about the same period’s as Carroll’s fluid timelines. Her story is about as believable or unbelievable as Carroll’s. But the difference was that whereas the media canonized the delusional and self-contradictory Carroll as a useful anti-Trump tool, it demonized Reade as a crazy loon and liar—and a potential impediment to Biden’s 2019-20 primary campaign.

Bragg had to torture the law to fabricate a federal campaign finance indictment against Trump. But Hillary Clinton clearly violated federal campaign statutes—and was variously fined—when she tried to hide her “opposition research” payments to Christopher Steele as “legal expenses.” In truth, Steele was hired and paid to concoct a fake anti-Trump dossier and likely should have been barred from working for a presidential campaign given he was not a U.S. citizen.

In the case of Smith, simultaneously with his case against Trump, his twin special prosecutor, Robert Hur, found that Joe Biden had unlawfully removed classified files for much longer than Trump (30 years plus), in a much less secure location (his rickety garage), and without a president’s authority to declassify his documents. Moreover, he had disclosed their contents to his ghostwriter, who destroyed evidence under subpoena by Hur. Yet unlike Trump, Biden was not charged, given that Hur claimed that Biden, in his opinion, was so old and amnesiac that he might win sympathy rather than a conviction from a jury.

Willis indicted Trump for supposedly trying to pressure officials to “find” missing Trump ballots, thus supposedly violating “racketeering” statutes, as he oversaw an attempt to find troves of ballots he thought had been cast for him. Of course, in the same state, Stacy Abrams, after losing the gubernatorial race of 2018, claimed she had actually won, despite losing by over 50,000 votes. She sued to overturn the election and then made a celebrity-political career touring the nation, falsely claiming she was the real governor and her victorious opponent was an illegitimate governor.

For that matter, in 2016, left-wing organizations, celebrities, and thousands of political operatives sought to overturn the Trump victory by appealing to the electors to renounce their states’ popular vote tallies and thus become “faithless electors.” In sum, there was a true conspiracy, or, better, a “racketeering” scheme, to use Willis’s parlance, to coordinate various groups to overturn the constitutional duties of electors to throw the election to Hillary Clinton. Clinton, along with the likes of ex-president Jimmy Carter and soon-to-be House Minority Leader Hakim Jeffries, would continue to deny that Trump was the legitimately elected president.

In sum, the number of suits against and indictments against Trump grew in correlation to his political fortunes. They were designed in the election year 2024 to do what Democrat voters likely cannot. They are ridiculous and sui generis, and will never be used against anyone other than Trump. They have done more damage to democracy, the rule of law, and equal justice to the law than all of the antics that Trump is accused of.

Moreover, they will set in motion a dangerous tit-for-tat cycle of weaponization that threatens the very constitutional order of the United States.

If Trump is elected to restore the rule of equal justice, will a Republican special counsel revisit Robert Hur’s work and find ex-President Biden quite capable of standing trial for the crimes Hur has already investigated and confirmed?

Will then a new Republican-appointed FBI director order a SWAT-like raid, with Fox News forewarned and Newsmax reporters on the scene, to descend into the Biden beach house?

Will county and state prosecutors in Utah, Montana, and Oklahoma feel that to stop this cycle of illegality, they must charge the Biden family members by bootstrapping local indictments onto federal crimes?

Will conservative women in the future come forward in Arkansas, Idaho, and Alabama to claim that in their past, they now suddenly remember that decades ago a prominent Democrat candidate harassed them? Will their right-wing lawyers cherry-pick the proper red-state judge?

Will conservative district attorneys find ways to indict Joe Biden on the various imaginative bookkeeping and “loan repayments” used to disguise the fact his corrupt family received well over $20 million from illiberal foreign interests, much if not all of it camouflaged to avoid income taxes?

Will some South Carolina legislator get a bill of attainder passed in the legislature, ending the statute of limitations for a year for all those in 2016 who sought to undermine the electors and flip them to Hillary Clinton?

In August or September, will a right-wing state prosecutor and a conservative judge find that Joe Biden’s creative bookkeeping warrants a $450 million fine, payable before appeal?

And will Republican officials and judges in purple states move to get Biden’s name off the ballot?

Such scenarios are endless and, given the current precedents, could all be justified as desperate deterrent measures to shock the left into ceasing their efforts to sabotage our constitutional system and rule of law.

A final note. There is a divine order of balance in the world, one known variously by particular civilizations as kismet, nemesis, karma, or what goes around, comes around payback. We’ve already seen such forces at work: Sen. Schumer at the head of a mob at the doors of the Supreme Court, calling out threats to justices by name, only now finding pro-Hamas thugs circling his own home. Or Democrats during the Trump years straining to find ways to invoke the 25th Amendment, now humiliated into claiming a non-compos-mentis Joe Biden is “sharp as a knife.”

Tragically for the country, to stop this left-wing madness, the Trump travesties may not be the end, but the beginning of precisely what the Founders feared.


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46 thoughts on “The Travesties of the Trump Trials”

  1. I think the docs case in Florida is being held in Ft. Pierce, not Miami. Ft. Pierce is St. Lucie County, ~120 miles north of Miami. I’m pretty sure it is more Red than Blue.

  2. Craig Brookins

    Thank you Victor for summarizing the shameful litany of abuses perpetrated by our far-left, marxist politicians and bureaucrats. They are exactly as transparent in their hatred and fear of Trump as you describe. Hopefully, articles like yours will increase the resolve of Americans to trash these destroyers of our Constitution and the judicial system. We must prevail!

  3. Such a fascinating piece. The death of civilizations.
    Thank you.
    The contagion appears so widespread and so well-funded as to be insurmountable.
    Why cannot destructive forces like George Soros orgs, and those of other leftist billionaires, not be recognized for the obvious harm they bring and taken down?

    Had Trump gone after Hillary in 2017 instead of looking the other way when he had the opportunity, how much of the Russian Hoax would we have seen? Would have thwarting her planned hoax back then been enough to stop this leftist juggernaut?

    Otoh, more than a few scholars of history see us as conforming to a pattern of like disintegrations of civilizations after ~200 to 400 years, not unlike that of the Zhou Dynasty around 1000 BC. Made up of a variety of races, it thrived until they could not control so many divergent elements and then fell.

    1. Evil for evil is the ONLY response democrats and liberals respond to. They will cry like babies when Trump returns to the White house and the guilty ones (Shumer, Clinton. Garland, Comey, McCabe,) should run for the hills…

    2. David H. Eisenberg

      John, what is the practical difference between self-defense and repaying evil with evil? What makes a punch or blocking traffic or taking over a building evil? Isn’t it the intent and motivation? If it’s in self-defense, or is done to ward off a likely attack based on evidence, is it evil? If you are watching something being destroyed, be it a person or university, a system of law, can you intervene with violence without it being evil?

      I have a “feeling” we probably agree on many things. I’m just addressing and trying to understand your statement.

  4. And yet, half of Americans are still supporting this despicable administration for yet another four years of the same idiocy.

    1. It is unbelievable that people still support the Democrats. The Unions have supported the Democrats forever. What did businesses do? With Bill Clinton and with former Presidents in support of world trade,NAFTA?

  5. Melanie Melancon

    Nobody could have taken all this, put it into an article, and make sense of the extraordinary efforts to get rid of Pres. Trump except you. Thanks once again.

  6. Trump in recent weeks has said many times that what is happening to him with these multiple lawsuits is election interference. And of course he is right. He goes on to say that it can not be allowed to happen to anyone, especially future presidential candidates. This of course is also very true. It is good that he applies his experiences to other candidates, because this of course is bigger than just Trump. It applies to all popular, future candidates that seriously threaten the “deep state”.

    Virtually Americans should and I believe would recoil from the applications of election interference. It is not in our DNA as a nation. So, if it can be proven, it will be abhorrent to the vast majority.

    So, God willing, if conservatives regain the control of the White House and congress in 2024 they must make the very logical case of proving that election interference did actually occur. As VDH points out there is abundance evidence of it. Prosecutors can do this without the “law fare” the left has used, and with out weaponing our institutions. We need only key, competent, and fearless people that will follow the facts to build iron-clad cases resulting in convictions for election interference.

    Then the penalties must be serious enough to serve as true deterrents so this crap will never, ever happen again. The “book” should be thrown at those proven guilty of these treasonous crimes!

  7. It is interesting to note that Matthew Colangelo (not Vincent?) was originally connected to the Obama presidency then moved to Letitia James’ office, then to the Biden White House, and is now part of the Bragg case in NY.

  8. No big deal. It’s just the end of civil society.

    I see four possible action plans. There could be more but these stick out in my mind.

    Option #1: Bring a knife to a knife fight. Stop being suckers and play the game to win. Litigate everything imaginable, just as the leftists are doing. Maybe a truce will be the result, maybe not. At least we will not be sitting ducks, serial losers and wimps.

    Option #2: Pass strict laws at the federal level that will address these kinds of made-up cases. Punish people like Bragg, Willis, Smith and James. Put them in jail. The punishment must be severe because the cost of this continuing behavior is enormous. Never again. We need good negative examples of what happens to you when you bend the law to punish your political rivals.

    Option #3: Split the union into Red states and Blue states. Long term, this is likely the best solution due to the polarized nature of our populace and the role that the media has in this debacle. The Red states will prosper and the Blue states will fail. Makers versus takers. The sooner we make this radical change, the better.

    Option #4: Do nothing and watch every future election go to the Democrats.

    These alternatives seem ridiculous. But are they, given the state of our elections?

    What else can you come up with? Do you have any better ideas?

    I didn’t think so.

    1. Never bring a knife to a knife fight. When playing for keeps there are no reules so bring a machine gun, hopefully a Thompson .45 cal, drum fed.

  9. One thing has been made perfectly clear.

    If you are a republican and want to run for President, you also must be very wealthy.

    Can you imagine Trump’s plight if he were just a normal citizen without the means to defend himself?

    I suggest that we start our own brutal lawfare campaign by purposefully impoverishing the universally despised Adam Schiff. He lied many times as a House representative. Certainly many cases can be brought that have much more meat to them than Trump’s bogus indictments.

    From the people’s house to the poor house.

    No more Mr Nice Guy.

      1. Mel, I believe it was Jefferson that said the big cities would be the end of us.

        He may have been correct.

        As much as I like rural PA, I am conflicted by images of Robert De Niro in “Deer Hunter”.

        “One shot”. I can think of a lot of scenarios where that principle could be applied to great affect.

        This scenario may or may not be played out this year.

  10. We know why no one has attempted to verify Tara Reade’s claim her mother had called the Larry King Show to tell of her daughter’s assault. The phone records probably still exist. The culprit is a Democrat!

  11. I pray the Supreme Court has the courage to put and end to much of this in the coming decisions. I believe this to be as great a test as the Court has faced in our history.

  12. Finally, we have a true article that fully describes how very disgusting our government has become. I have sent this to
    everyone on my list and hope that this will spread out to everyone. I get so tired of hearing people tell me they are
    actually ‘terrified’ that Trump will be elected. I cannot even understand what they are thinking. Americans need to get
    back to basics and remember that we, all of us, made this country great, not that social pack in
    Washington. We are not going back, we are going forward to a better future but we need to stand firm and
    fight and not allow the loss of our freedoms.

  13. The problem here is that Mr. Trump needs to be treated as any private citizen would be. As it is, he has been granted a lot of leeway that others would not have had. Some of these cases are federal, and some are state. Several are the result of Grand Juries comprised of citizens who, upon listening to the evidence, found enough cause to go forward. Some of the timing results from Mr. Trump’s own actions, such as the failure to turn over documents over a period of months.

    Mr. Brookins above indicates that it is the far-left marxist politicians and bureacrats. This is not consistent with the facts and name calling is counter productive, divisive, and inappropriate.

    If he is innocent, then he will be found innocent. If he is guilty, his peers will decide. Its interesting that in some cases, the choice of attorney’s, by Mr. Trump or his advisors, who did not know local law deprived Mr. Trump of a jury trial.

    Tactics of delay have caused a lot of issues, and these are self inflicted problems.

    I am not on the far left, I am not a Marxist, I am pretty much a little right of center; and I love my country very much. I love it too much to be happy with the idea of demonizing people who do not agree with you.

      1. What I think does not matter any more than what you think matters. It’s what the court and a jury of his peers think. Are you willing to accept a jury’s determination? Remember, there were several OJ trials. They could’nt find him guilty criminally but did find him culpable civilly. That is the strength of the system. In the criminal trial, OJ’s attorneys made it about race. It was never about race.

      2. Since you may not know from my answer, I think OJ was guilty as hell. But I was not on the Jury in either of his trials so it does not matter.

    1. You can say you’re not a Marxist liberal but your comments sound like one. Blaming President Trump for his lawfare says everything about you. You have a right to your opinion and I have a right to say you’re wrong.

      1. Having studied Marxism at a University Masters level, I am afraid, that I do not qualify as a Marxist. I am a capitalist, and therefore Marx would have classified me as part of the bourgeoisie. Classifying people without knowing anything about them is one of the problems we face here. Of course, you have a right to disagree with me and thank you for granting me the same right. Please be certain that you actually understand the terms you use and consider the wisdom of using them when you do not know or with someone you do not know.

        To be absolutely specific, I am socially liberal and physcally conservative.

        I didnt know how to be more middle of the road than I was but based on your email i failed.

        1. You mean “fiscally” conservative.
          The problem with Trump juries reaching fair conclusions is is that citizens in Democrat Party-run cities have for years been steeped in Trump hatred through biased main stream media, ranging from TV, newspapers, magazines, and blatantly spouted by their politicians. They can fear familial, social and workplace censure by exonerating Trump.

    2. On its face , sure what you say is correct… principle. However in practical application, nothing could be further from the truth and it appears that you didn’t comprehend the article.

      Would you like to be indicted by a Grand Jury handpicked by someone who has publicly vowed to come after you?

      Would you like theFBI , DOJ to improperly appoint an ideologue and create cases against you that have no legal foundation. Can you afford that?

      Would you like States AGs to to invent charges , manipulate the venue and jury selection, cherry pick a judge that hates you and prosecute you ?

      No , you are wrong headed and naieve on this matter and you wouldn’t advocate such a passive approach for yourself therefor it’s hypocritical to propose it for Trump.

      1. Dear John You make statements, and i can see they are your opinions without factual support. Have you ever worked for the government? It doesn’t sound like it from your writing. I did, and I can tell you that most people are good, honorable civil servants who try to stay as far away from politics as they can. If you had worked for a government agency, you would know what I mean. Whether I favored one party or another, I always did my job without prejudice, and each of the people I worked with did the same. Yes, there are always a few bad apples, but it is a mistake to generalize. You should probably take a look at the CFR related to how government agencies operate. How do you explain Barr’s comments about President Trump.

        Are you aware that a number of President Trump’s issues started when he was still president, and a number were brought about by people who were put in power under his administration. Sometimes, as sad as it may be, people we favor have checkered pasts. There were over 60 law suits brought about the election, which results many Republicans cannot accept because Biden won. Every single one of them failed because of a lack of evidence. Most people being questioned for irregularities were Trump appointees.

        I had been a Republican my entire voting life until President Trump ran for office. I know its hard to hear and I expect pushback, but I just couldnt stand the constant lies that were clearly evident to me. If you wish to vote for him again, then that is certainly your right, and I respect your right. Can you respect mine without insults?

        Since the founding of our republic, things have never been as divisive as they are now. The only change has been one person. I believe in the beautiful history of our nation, and now someone seeks to disrupt it. The simplest answer is usually the correct one. I don’t believe conspiracy theories.

  14. Great article! I don’t want revenge, but I do want people that broke the law prosecuted. Also, the prosecutors that stretched the law should be disbarred.

  15. Victor, the Bill of Rights is being shredded. It all steam-rolled during COVID to the extent that anything goes. It seems to be their hole card. You are correct about the tragic outcome. 

  16. Thank you Professor Hanson for your unmatched cogent and comprehensive summation of the ridiculous, unfounded and evil charges against Mr. Trump. As I read your series of eight important questions concluding your article such as:

    “Will then a new Republican-appointed FBI director order a SWAT-like raid, with Fox News forewarned and Newsmax reporters on the scene, to descend into the Biden beach house?”

    I can only respond: By GOD, I Hope So!!!

  17. Stephen A. Hill

    This “Death by a Thousand Lawsuits” is dangerous. If any one is to expect “equal protection of the law,” then we must first see that it is applied to those we dislike. And if our Republic is to be rescued, we must all take our “oaths” seriously. As an attorney, I took an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

  18. Christopher Wheeler

    As usual Mr Hanson, you are spot on with your analysis of our current political situation as it pertains to the upcoming presidential election. The scenarios outlined whereby Republican officials retaliate by conjuring up similar legal entanglements are likely never to occur. Trump had a chance to go after Hillary Clinton for her misdeeds but chose not to for the “good” of the country; he was duly paid back by Obama’s plan to hamstring his administration from before day one. What’s to prevent even Republican Secretaries of State from altering election procedures when pressured by Democrat organizations. Trump won in 2016 because Democrats had not organized fully their arsenal of fraudulent activities but lost 4 years later to an “old geezer” whose Senate and VP accomplishments could be measured in millimeters. In short, will there ever be another Republican president, whose DOJ will investigate wrongdoers who happen to be political opponents. Or will Democrats dial-in another narrow victory in 5 key states, or will their dream of millions of illegal immigrant voters be realized , thus ensuring perpetual Democratic rule.

  19. Amos Fleetwood

    No matter how you slice it. With these idiots in government, on both sides. The country and those in it are screwed. We can’t rebuild the country with any of the people that are currently in leadership rolls. They would all have to be purged. Along with everyone that agrees with them. That’s the only way we could get the republic back. Also, the internet would have to go. Everything that connects us world wide would have to be dismantled. None of these things will ever happen. No, the left is sinking this ship and we got no choice but to go down with it. We let them have total control. The greatest generation forward, screwed it up.

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