In a piece describing that Jack Smith has substantially completed his investigation into stolen documents, WSJ reported Trump’s associates believed that the former President would be indicted and were already making plans to profit off him being charged with one or more federal crimes.
Some of Trump’s close associates are bracing for his indictment and anticipate being able to fundraise off a prosecution, people in the former president’s circle said, as clashes within the Trump legal team have led to the departure of a key lawyer.
Hours after WSJ reported that Trump was going to try to profit off being a criminal suspect, he posted a letter, with just one substantive paragraph, on Truth Social. Aside from the letterhead and signatures from Jim Trusty and John Rowley, it was indistinguishable from Trump’s other grievance-farming on his failing social media platform, claiming that,
Unlike President Biden, his son Hunter, or the Biden family, President Trump is being treated unfairly. No President of the United States has ever, in the history of the country, been baselessly investigated in such an outrageous and unlawful fashion.
Then it asked for a meeting with the recused Attorney General to discuss the “ongoing injustice being perpetrated by your Special Counsel.”
It copied unnamed members of Congress, the last thing a letter seriously asking for dialogue with the Attorney General would do.
It’s a campaign stunt, not a letter designed to request a meeting about potential upcoming indictment(s). In fact, just days ago, Tim Parlatore explained that he quit because Boris Epshteyn would not permit him to engage in that kind of discussion professionally.
Nevertheless, multiple news outlets decided to treat this letter as a serious bid for discussion with the recused Attorney General. In ABC’s case, it falsely claimed that the letter “present[ed] arguments” that Trump should not be charged in the stolen documents case, citing “sources familiar with the matter.”
The letter, though thin on details, presents arguments that Trump should not be charged in the investigation related to his alleged mishandling of classified documents, sources familiar with the matter tell ABC News.
In other words, rather than convey to ABC’s readers what the document actually says — which is nothing more than a claim Trump is being treated unfairly, a claim that is easy to debunk — its reporters called up Trump’s lawyers and transcribed what they claimed the letter said, or perhaps simply parroted their cover for releasing a letter better designed to raise money and sow violence, rather than just reporting what the letter actually did say.
Because “sources familiar” told them so, ABC reported the letter said something it did not. 2 + 2 = 5.
Jim Trusty used to work at DOJ. He knows how to write such a letter. He did not. But ABC nevertheless claimed that he and John Rowley did.
2 + 2 = 5.
As the two journalists described how the letter was something that it wasn’t on Twitter, one of them — Alex Mallin — likened it to Trump’s purported request to speak with Garland last August, just before Garland publicly spoke about the search on Trump’s beach resort.
He didn’t mention that Trump’s comment came after Trump’s false claims of victimhood led a Trump supporter and January 6 participant to attempt to breach the Cincinnati FBI office. He didn’t mention that that earlier outreach sure looked like an implicit threat.
I really get the inclination to treat Trump’s response to being caught stealing classified documents as if it is a normal legal proceeding. I get the inclination to pretend everything is normal.
But that doesn’t justify describing the plain content of the letter as something it’s not.
The letter is a fundraising vehicle. It’s an attempt to discredit rule of law. It’s probably an attempt to sow violence again. Claiming it is something else because sources you’ve granted anonymity said it is is not journalism.