Tag Archives: Manhattan DA

Is there an indictment in Trump’s future?

If we are to believe the New York Times reporting on this matter — and I do, generally — then it appears that Donald J. Trump will dodge the indictment bullet in the Manhattan district attorney’s office.

The newly installed DA, Aaron Bragg, appears to be closing up shop in his investigation into the Trump Organization’s business dealings. Many of his chief assistant prosecutors have quit the office. Bragg isn’t inclined to pursue the former POTUS any further.

Now, does that forestall a probe being conducted by New York Attorney General Letitia James? Hah! Hardly.

However, it could be argued that without the NYC prosecutor’s office going full tilt on its investigation, the AG’s office might be caught with fewer evidence-gathering tools at its disposal.

Nor does this mean that the 1/6 investigation ongoing in the U.S. House of Representatives is going to flicker out and die. House intel committee chairman Bennie Thompson plans to commence public hearings in June on his panel’s probe into the insurrection. U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland is standing by with possible plans to take legal action against all sorts of players from the Trump administration. Hmm, maybe even against The Donald himself?

Oh, one more thing. We have that probe going on down yonder in Fulton County, Ga., where legal eagles are investigating whether Trump broke state law by demanding election officials to “find” enough votes to turn that state’s 2020 presidential electoral result from Joe Biden to Trump.

The plot is still pretty damn thick, even if the Manhattan DA is bowing out.


Trump far from in the clear

Two top prosecutors from the Manhattan (N.Y.) district attorney’s office have quit, reportedly throwing a criminal investigation into Donald J. Trump into some state of disarray. The chatter suggests the new DA has choked on deciding whether to indict Donald for any sort of allegation associated with a longstanding criminal probe into his business dealings.

Does this mean Trump is home free? That he has nothing about which to worry? Oh, no. Far from it.

DA Alvin Bragg reportedly has balked on proceeding with indicting Donald. Two of his top legal eagles quit simultaneously, suggesting to many observers that there’s a major disagreement within the DA’s office on how to proceed.

But let’s hold on for a minute. This is one investigation. Do I want it to end now? No! As an ardent critic of Donald Trump, my preference would be for the DA who took over from a veteran prosecutor — Cyrus Vance Jr. — to follow the evidence and the law all the way to the end.

However, the New York attorney general, Letitia James, is still working on our own investigation into Trump’s alleged business chicanery. Let us also remember that the Trump Organization already is has been indicted on charges of tax fraud and other matters.

Oh, and then we have yet another criminal investigation down yonder in Fulton County, Ga., where DA Fani Willis is examining whether to prosecute Donald on a charge of interfering in a state election process. Donald did demand that Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensberger “find” enough votes to swing the state from Joe Biden’s column to Donald Trump.

Finally, there’s the House select committee examining Trump’s role in inciting the insurrection on 1/6. We now hear of possible cooperation with the committee from key Donald Trump acolytes, such as Rudolph Giuliani and — get a load of this! — Ivanka Trump, the elder daughter of Donald. The Justice Department already has indicted one key Trump aide, Steve Bannon, on a charge of contempt of Congress for his refusal to comply with a congressional subpoena.

This is all my way of suggesting that the resignations of the DA’s office prosecutor might not be as big a deal as many are making of it. The quitters might have stalled the progress of that probe by virtue of their resignation. It isn’t the end of Donald Trump’s troubles. Not by a very long shot!


Who is “#1”? Any guesses?

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Well now. The indictment of Trump Organization chief bean counter Allen Weisselberg contains a term just about anyone could have predicted would be in there.

It refers to “Unindicted co-conspirator #1.” Hmmm. My noodle is rolling that one around.

Who in this whole wide world could that be?

Oh, wait. I think I know. It well might be the former president of the United States of America, the teller of the Big Lie and the guy who wants to control all that is contained within the Republican Party.

Weisselberg has pleaded not guilty to an assortment of tax charges against him in the indictment handed down today by a grand jury working with the Manhattan district attorney’s office led by Cyrus Vance Jr.

The former president calls the indictment the result of the greatest witch hunt in human history. There are many of us, though, who wonder the obvious: When will the man for whom the Trump Organization is named find himself surrendering to authorities the way his chief financial officer did this morning?

Hasn’t the former Imbecile in Chief boasted over the years that nothing happens with his company without his knowledge? Hasn’t he talked and talked and talked again about how he runs everything? How he knows everything?

Just think, too, that this idiot emeritus might want to run for POTUS yet again in 2024.

This is just me thinking out loud, but my strong hunch is that — despite the passion exhibited among his “base” of lunatic supporters — he ain’t gonna make the GOP cut next time around.

Get to work, grand jury

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

The grand jury has been seated, sworn in and given its task.

It works for the Manhattan, N.Y., district attorney’s office and is being asked to determine whether to indict Donald Trump, the company he owns, anyone who works for him and perhaps even members of the ex-president’s family.

The grand jury is looking for criminal misbehavior.

Hmm. Now I don’t how you look at this, but I would consider this to be a serious wakeup call for Donald Trump that the Manhattan DA’s legal eagles are in hot pursuit of criminality involving the the former POTUS.

To be sure, Trump calls it all “political” and part of what he calls the “greatest witch hunt” in human history … or words to that effect.

He offers no evidence of pure partisanship other than just to call it what he alleges it to be.

I feel the need to remind readers of this blog that grand jurors swear to look objectively at evidence presented to them. Failure to be impartial carries criminal penalties of their own. What sane individual would take such an oath with no intention of being faithful to it?

Oh, wait! Trump took an oath, too,  to defend the Constitution and to serve the country with honor and honesty. Do you think he was faithful to his oath? Well, me neither.

Which suggests to me that the grand jury is going to take great care in its pursuit of potential criminal liability in Trump’s business dealings.

So, with that … time to get busy, grand jurors.

Once again, about those tax returns

I guess we can set aside much hope that today’s Supreme Court ruling means we’ll get a look at Donald John Trump’s tax returns prior to the November presidential election.

The court issued a 7-2 ruling that said presidents aren’t above the law, clearing the way for a Manhattan, N.Y., district attorney to pursue Trump’s tax returns.

Why is this a big … deal?

First of all, it means that the DA, Cyrus Vance Jr., will be able to present the returns to a grand jury, which is bound by secrecy provisions under state law. The grand jury is looking into whether Trump violated any crime involving his business holdings.

Eventually the nation will get a look, I suppose. Trump’s team is pretty adept at deception, diversion and delay. I expect the legal eagles working for Trump to employ all the tactics it can to delay this legal proceeding.

That all said, the public deserves a look at those returns.

Trump promised to release them. He made the promise while campaigning for the presidency. He has since choked on the pledge. Presidential candidates dating back to Jimmy Carter have released their tax returns as a matter of routine; it was a post-Watergate reform that became common practice … then along came Donald Trump.

Why do we deserve to see those returns? We need to know whether Trump is as rich as he claims to be; we deserve to know how much he pays in taxes, given that he now has a voice in what we all pay the government; we deserve to know whether he has foreign investments that might interfere with policy decisions, such as whether he deals with Russian oligarchs … right?

I’ve been yammering for those returns since before Trump got elected. They should become part of the public domain if only because they belong to the nation’s leading elected public official. He makes pronouncements and sets policies affecting the public. Therefore, the public deserves to know all about the individual who sits at the top of our government’s chain of command.

We have inched a bit closer to that reality occurring. Although I am not going to hold my breath waiting for it. I’ll just keep yammering for those returns’ release.

Oh, Mr. POTUS, you’re breaking another promise

Oh, c’mon Mr. President. You once said you would release your tax returns. You promised us while campaigning for the presidency.

Then you back away from that promise. Oh, and then you said again you would do so.

What’s the deal, then, with this lawsuit you’ve filed against Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., who has subpoenaed your tax returns to help him solve a criminal investigation he’s been seeking to clear up?

Vance wants those returns to ascertain whether you committed a campaign law violation in paying off the stripper with whom (she says) you had a fling in a hotel room back in 2006. I get that you deny it happened, yet you paid her that $130,000 sum to keep her quiet.

I am just one American who wants to know why you paid her the money. I also want to know whether you broke any laws in paying it.

The DA wants to know, too. He’s within his rights to subpoena those returns.

So, knock off with the lawsuit, Mr. President.

Inquiring minds want to know the truth about your finances. They deserve to know it as well.

Tax returns: Are they going to be released … finally?

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance has invoked the legal power of his office to seek to obtain something that has been on the minds of millions of Americans since the moment Donald Trump announced his campaign for the presidency of the United States.

Vance has subpoenaed Trump’s tax returns. Yep, he’s on the hunt for information relating to that hush money payment Trump made to a porn star to keep her quiet about a fling that Trump says never happened.

Stephanie Clifford, aka Stormy Daniels, is back in the news. 

Clifford said she and Trump had a one-night tumble in 2006 in a hotel room. Trump said it didn’t happen, but he paid her 130 grand to keep quiet about it anyway. Go figure.

Vance wants to see Trump’s tax returns over the past eight years to find out the details of how the payment was made and whether the president violated campaign finance laws to make it.

Well now. How do you think this will turn out?

I happen to one American who believes I have a right to know about the president’s finances. I want to know whether he’s as rich as he says he is. I want to know whether he has profited from his high office. I want to know how much he has given to charity. I want to know the kinds of things Americans have known about past presidents and presidential candidates dating back more than four decades.

You see, Trump once promised he would reveal his taxes. Then he changed his mind. Then he said he would do so again. Then he backtracked again. He contends the Internal Revenue Service is auditing his taxes; the audit bans him from releasing the returns, he said. The IRS said, um, no … the audit does no such thing.

Donald Trump has lied and dissembled over the tax returns.

Vance reportedly informed the president’s accounting firm(s) of his desire to see the returns. Trump no doubt will fight it like hell, which I guess is his right.

The liar in chief, though, promised full transparency regarding his tax returns. He has failed to deliver on that promise, just as he has failed to “make America great again.”

Count me as an American who wants DA Cyrus Vance to get his hands on the tax returns. While he’s at it, he can let the country know what they contain.