Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Monday, May 15, 2017

David Frum: In the wake of the firing of FBI Director James Comey, many are demanding a special prosecutor into the Trump-Russia connection. It's not appreciated enough that such an appointment could well turn into a shield for wrongdoing. A special prosecutor could wrap the investigation of the Trump-Russia matter in secrecy for months and years -- and ultimately fail to answer any of the important questions demanding answers. Of all the types of independent investigation that have been suggested, a special prosecutor is the most likely to disappear down rabbit holes -- the least likely answer the questions that needed to be answered.

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A select committee of Congress or an independent commission of non-partisan experts established by Congress can ask the broad question: What happened? A select committee or an independent commission can organize its inquiry according to priority, leaving the secondary and tertiary issues to the historians. A select committee or an independent commission is not barred from looking at events in earlier years statutes of limitations. A select committee or an independent commission seeks truth.

A special prosecutor, by contrast, seeks crimes. The criminal law is a heavy tool, and for that reason it is thickly encased in protections for accused persons. The most important protection from the point of view of the Trump-Russia matter is the rule of silence. A prosecutor investigating a crime can often discover non-criminal bad actions by the people he is investigating. If those bad actions do not amount to crimes, the prosecutor is supposed to look away.

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"Few now disagree that the integrity of the 2016 election was polluted by clandestine foreign intervention," Frum opines.

Americans deserve the full story of that pollution, If the president of the United States -- or anyone near him -- is compromised by connections to foreign intelligence or foreign organized crime, the public and Congress need to know that immediately. But the dangers -- and the remedies -- in the present situation are much more likely to be political than legal. It's more important that the investigation be speedy and its full conclusions shared with the public than that it lead to indictments, prosecutions, and penalties. By delaying, distracting, and asking the wrong questions, a slow-moving and tight-lipped special prosecutor could well serve Trump's interests better than Trump's own lawyers to date have done.

#1 | Posted by Doc_Sarvis at 2017-05-15 10:17 AM | Reply

Is there a reason we can't have more than one thing?

#2 | Posted by Zed at 2017-05-15 10:40 AM | Reply

You'd think we could do both, wouldn't you?

#3 | Posted by Doc_Sarvis at 2017-05-15 10:50 AM | Reply

The Special Prosecutor Ken Starr was appointed to investigate the Whitewater deal but ended up delving into issues such as a sexual liason in the WH. Whereas, the 9-11 Commission was a joke with the President and Vice President refusing to testify under oath, results severely redacted, etc.

#4 | Posted by danni at 2017-05-15 12:03 PM | Reply

Trump gives Russia confidential information endangering our country.

Now it is time for a Special Prosecutor.

#5 | Posted by Sycophant at 2017-05-16 02:40 PM | Reply

You can have both an independent commission AND a special prosecutor, no?

Let's not forget, however, that this is advice coming from someone who carried water for Dubya, so he might know a little bit about the nuances of avoiding prosecution...

#6 | Posted by chuffy at 2017-05-16 06:11 PM | Reply

A special prosecutor gets to turn over a lot of stones, including ANYWHERE the investigation leads...so Congressional Russiapublicans are vehemently against that. It's a tool only to be used against Democrats.

#7 | Posted by chuffy at 2017-05-16 06:12 PM | Reply

A special prosecutor investigates a crime. Heck, the Russia stuff isn't even a criminal investigation, it's a counter-intelligence investigation. It's WAY too early to call for a special prosecutor. Plus, it's something that is fraught with problems, not the least of which that said prosecutor reports to the AG.

#8 | Posted by JeffJ at 2017-05-16 06:18 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

#8

You mean a crime like if Trump had asked the FBI Dir to lay off investigating his friend Flynn?

#9 | Posted by Corky at 2017-05-16 06:27 PM | Reply

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