Giuliani: Trump will demand tonight that Obama not pardon Clinton for any legal issues before leaving office

Last night WaPo dropped yet another embarrassing scoop about Trump’s charity, noting that it’s been raising funds in New York for years but never registered with the state AG as it’s required to do by law. Reporters oohed and ahhed over the news but I think Hugh Hewitt was right: Although their dubious charity activity gives you a window onto the characters of both candidates, voters aren’t paying attention to this stuff. I think that’s because the charity reporting doesn’t tell us anything we don’t already know about the two of them. Hillary’s an establishment parasite who leverages her political influence to trade favors with powerful people. Of course the Clinton Foundation operates the way it does. Trump is an image-obsessed con man who wants to be seen as a big shot and doesn’t care what corners he cuts to do so. Of course the Trump Foundation operates the way it does. Their characters are already priced into their political stock, so the charity reporting never really changes the value.

Same deal, though, with this “no pardons!” attack, right? Reminding voters that Crooked Hillary got a free pass over Emailgate from her friends in the Justice Department is a better use of Trump’s time than tweeting about sex tapes, but I fear it’s already fully priced into Hillary Inc. She placed her own convenience over the national security of the country and got off scot free when less connected public figures would have been gone to the pen. That’s well known by now, and while it can’t hurt to remind people sporadically, which voters who stuck with her throughout the twists and turns of the FBI investigation this summer are going to flip on her now because of this?

…Why would O need to preemptively pardon her when the whole point of the DOJ/FBI sturm and drang of the past three months is that the fix is in and she’ll never be indicted in the first place? Comey declined to charge her, remember? It sounds like this is a roundabout way for Trump to suggest without explicitly saying that, if he wins the election, his Justice Department will indict Crooked Hillary. He hinted at that back in February, in fact; five months later, Republicans were chanting “lock her up” on the floor of the convention in Cleveland. He could complete the circle by saying now, explicitly, that he’ll charge her with mishandling classified information if he’s elected. That would be another way in which Trump channels the right’s id by throwing roundhouses at the Clintons.

But to bring this back to the point up top, which swing voter would that convince? Anyone who’s desperate to see Clinton behind bars is already a flag-waving Trump supporter. White college grads who are worried about the economy and terrorism will stop caring about Hillary Clinton five minutes after the race is called for Trump in November. And it’s simply not true that Trump would follow through on his promise to prosecute her as president. Even if he lucks out and ends up with a Congress that’s still controlled by Republicans, the GOP’s majorities in the House and Senate will be thinner than they are now. The party will need to work with Democrats to pass Trump’s agenda and trying to send the last Democratic nominee to prison won’t make that easier. It’ll also open Trump up to ferocious attacks from the left and the media that he’s politicizing the Justice Department by demanding prosecution in a case where the FBI, rightly or wrongly, has already declined to charge. Trump as president would inevitably end up deciding that, “for the good of the country” and in the spirit of national healing, it’d be best to let Hillary sink into senescent retirement out of the public eye than to have a big trial. Especially since the DOJ losing that trial would be deeply humiliating to Trump.

Instead of worrying about Obama pardoning Hillary, Trump could use tonight to reiterate his strongest argument against Clinton, the one that actually can win him votes. But why bother with that, I guess, when there’s a right-wing id to be fed? Further to that point, here’s Rush back in February exulting at the possibility of the Clintons finally facing justice in court. By the way, it’s late in the day on a Friday as I write this. Isn’t that the usual time for another highly damaging FBI document dump about Hillary?

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Jazz Shaw 10:01 PM on June 07, 2023