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‘Lawfare’ against Trump and Republicans will only escalate
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‘Lawfare’ against Trump and Republicans will only escalate

Republicans must learn to combat this nonsense. They should start by openly and unanimously acknowledging that the recently concluded libel trial against the former president was a judicial outrage.

It’s clear that lawfare is threatening what remains of our constitutional government. Democratic judges and elected officeholders have been hammering Donald Trump with dubious legal charges. This battering bodes ill for our future.

It will be a future in which authorized voters do not choose their leaders. Democratic appointees will, with the help of friendly juries located in heavily blue voting districts. Unlike fractious Republicans, Democratic judges, juries, and politicians, with very few exceptions, work to advance their party’s interests and show solidarity with party leaders.

Although Trump’s problems may be partly owing to verbal intemperance, what befell him could happen to others in his party.

One of the most promising avenues for election interference for Democrats is what happened to Donald Trump in two civil suits with feminist journalist E. Jean Carroll. According to Carroll, Trump raped her in Bergdorf Goodman, a New York fashion store, in 1995 and then “ defamed” her when she made accusations against him years later. Carroll sued Trump twice over her grievances, armed with a vast fortune from Trump-hater and promoter of Democratic causes Reid Hoffman. After being awarded $83.3 million in the second suit, which was far more than Carroll was demanding, Trump’s energized antagonist went on her pal Rachel Maddow’s MSNBC program to tell us about how she’ll spend Trump’s money.

One needn’t be surprised that Carroll, Hoffman, and the ideologically engaged media went after Trump long, long after the traumatic incident in question. They’re all keen on derailing Trump’s political career while beggaring him on the way.

Trump’s lawfare adversaries are trying to make sure that he is driven from the presidential race and that the Democrats hold on to the presidency. That may also have been what motivated the New York jury that awarded Carroll more than $80 million in damages after Trump had blurted out unfriendly sentiments about his accuser. And yes, I know the Democratic-appointed judge was reportedly the mentor of Carroll’s lawyer and that Trump’s attorney, Alina Habba, was kept from speaking in defense of her client. Since the corporate left-wing press has passionately embraced the anti-Trump side, I would not expect to find these details in the media-created public narrative.

It is entirely possible that Trump did grope the lady in question three decades ago, although an earlier trial concluded that whatever indelicacy the former and perhaps future president may have committed, it did not constitute rape. It’s also possible that the anti-Trump judgment will go from an appellate court up to the Supreme Court and even there may not be decided definitively. This process may drag on for years and end without Carroll getting the huge sum that she and Rachel Maddow wrongly imagine she’s about to spend.

What stands out for me most, however, is how similar this lawfare is to how the Democrats tried to stop Brett Kavanaugh’s appointment to the Supreme Court. That entailed bringing in Christine Blasey Ford, a less than reliable Democratic #MeToo zealot, who charged Kavanaugh with making inappropriate sexual advances in the 1980s. Before that, the Democrats, again with the assistance of their media lapdogs, went after Clarence Thomas for allegedly making lewd remarks to Anita Hill. Both these larks were intended to mobilize the Democrats’ feminist base against supposedly male chauvinist Republicans.

As in earlier uses of this now-familiar tactic, one may be justified in questioning the accuser’s account of what occurred decades ago. I find no incontestable evidence that Carroll was raped. I doubt even more her insistence that Trump’s belittling of her brought about her professional ruin. Contrary to what she asserted, she’s now busily writing for fashionable, leftist magazines about her run-in with The Donald.

Although Trump was being intemperate when he described Carroll as “mentally sick” and a “whack job,” his accuser has been profiting from her accounts of all those “hideous men” who have taken advantage of her over the years. Carroll, now an 80-year-old senior citizen, was a Miss Indiana University prizewinner in the 1960s and presumably had many young men chasing after her. But now she’s fixed on the theme of how men have abused her.

Although Trump’s problems may be partly owing to verbal intemperance, what befell him could happen to others in his party. The media have already pushed similar charges against far better-behaved figures, and there’s no reason to imagine that the Dems are going to junk their playbook once Trump is gone. They’re playing the kind of hardball they excel in, especially against a wimpish opposition, with bought-off umpires. Needless to say, that horrific Democratic abuser of women, Hunter Biden, will never have to confront Jean’s fuming wrath. She works at the beck and call of Democratic boosters and operatives.

The Republicans must learn to combat this nonsense, and they should start by openly and unanimously acknowledging that the recently concluded trial against Trump was a judicial outrage. That doesn’t mean defending Trump’s impulsive response to his accuser. But it does mean recognizing an obvious setup, which will likely be orchestrated again and again, in the absence of an effective counterstrategy.

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Paul Gottfried

Paul Gottfried

Paul Gottfried is the editor of Chronicles. An American paleoconservative philosopher, historian, and columnist, Gottfried is a former Horace Raffensperger Professor of Humanities at Elizabethtown College in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania, as well as a Guggenheim recipient.