New York Times op-ed warns prosecuting Trump carries "enormous costs"

August 9, 2023

Conservatives have long complained that The New York Times has a left-wing slant, with former executive editor Jill Abramson admitting in 2019 that the paper was "unmistakably anti-Trump."

Yet in what may come as a shocking move to Democrats, the paper published an op-ed piece which opposed prosecuting the former president. 

Case against Trump "far from legally airtight"

Despite being a longtime critic of Trump, Harvard Law School professor Jack Goldsmith argued on Tuesday that attempts to convict him could "have terrible consequences."

Goldsmith began by stating that Special Counsel Jack Smith's most recent indictment of Trump represents "a factually compelling but far from legally airtight case."

He then pointed out how Smith's is using "novel applications of three criminal laws" that raise "tricky issues of Mr. Trump’s intent, his freedom of speech and the contours of presidential power."

"If the prosecution fails (especially if the trial concludes after a general election that Mr. Trump loses), it will be a historic disaster," the law professor insisted.

DOJ has damaged its image as an impartial institution

What's more, Goldsmith maintained that "even if the prosecution succeeds in convicting Mr. Trump, before or after the election, the costs to the legal and political systems will be large."

Goldsmith highlighted the fact that President Joe Biden's Department of Justice (DOJ) "delayed the investigation of Mr. Trump for a year and then rushed to indict him well into G.O.P. primary season."

"The unseemliness of the prosecution will most likely grow if the Biden campaign or its proxies use it as a weapon against Mr. Trump if he is nominated," Goldsmith continued.

Further, the legal expert stressed that Trump's prosecution comes amid the perception that the DOJ is selective in its application of justice.

An example of this came in the form of a sweetheart plea bargain deal it offered to Hunter Biden before being rebuked by U.S. District Court Judge Maryellen Noreika.

"Tit-for-tat investigations" may follow

Thus, Goldsmith suggested that efforts to go after Trump will "inspire ever more aggressive tit-for-tat investigations of presidential actions."

Additionally, he pointed to the "criminalization of politics" through which the "exaggeration and truth shading" that Trump has been accused of engaging in after the 2020 election now become grounds for indictment.

As Goldsmith drew to a close, he lamented that the Senate did not convict Trump in 2021 following his second impeachment trial and thus bar him from seeking another term. Still, the law professor predicted that "enormous costs to the country" will follow Trump's criminal prosecution.

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