During his weekend rally, Donald Trump announced that he’s going to win the 2024 presidential election and then pardon all January 6th Capitol attackers. Then Trump put out a statement flat out admitting that he wanted Mike Pence to “overturn the election.” This naturally prompted the media to insist that this all means Trump will in fact somehow magically win the 2024 election, even as Twitter pundits used it as an excuse to insist that we’re all doomed.
Meanwhile back in the real world, these two moments added up to Christmas morning for anyone who wants to see Donald Trump behind bars. While Trump obviously won’t be anywhere near the 2024 election, his promise of pardons to those who refuse to cooperate with the DOJ was nonetheless an act of felony obstruction of justice on his part. And Trump’s subsequent confession will make it fairly easy for any prosecutor to convict Trump on election crimes who wants to take a shot at him.
The Fulton County Georgia Attorney General already has a special grand jury going against Trump for election crimes, and pretty clearly intends to indict him. Her job just got easier. Now she can point to Trump’s confession as proof that he intended to overturn the election when he called Georgia officials and told them he needed more votes. If Trump had any reasonable doubt defense by arguing that he was merely speaking wishfully or metaphorically during these conversations, that just got erased. Trump’s odds of conviction in Georgia just went way up.
We’ve been seeing a trail of breadcrumbs for the past few weeks which suggests (but doesn’t prove) that the DOJ is in fact building a criminal case against Donald Trump. Whatever the odds are of the DOJ indicting Trump, they just went way up. Trump’s direct public confession just made it very easy for the DOJ to indict him, and for that matter just made it a lot harder for the DOJ not to indict him.
Of course back in fantasyland, the pundits are insisting that Donald Trump’s latest actions mean he’s somehow got us right where he wants us, and that he’s somehow going to become President again no matter what. But that’s all just doomsday hysteria for the sake of boosting ratings, and for the sake of pandering to the defeatists who are so broken they want to believe they’re going to lose.
Even Trump pretty obviously knows he’s never again going to get within a mile of the White House (he confessed to that when he sold off the lease on his hotel down the street from it). There’s a reason Trump’s handlers rarely allow him to speak to the public anymore. Each time he does, he ends up making it all the more certain that he’ll end up in prison. Trump knows his life is over, but he still seems to very much enjoy making empty threats that cause the gullible types on our side to hide under their couch in fear of him. It’s probably the only enjoyment he has left. But it comes at the cost of cementing his fate: he’s going to prison.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report