Here come the reinforcements

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There’s a reason the DOJ has such a high conviction rate at trial, and why so many people criminally charged by the DOJ end up deciding to just plead guilty instead of going to trial. The reason is that the DOJ overwhelmingly does its homework, and goes out of its way to flip criminal targets against each other.

We were reminded of this over the weekend when it was reported that Trump’s current attorney Christina Bobb has now hired her own attorney and says she’s willing to cooperate with the DOJ. This didn’t come about by happenstance. The DOJ managed to get Bobb to sign a letter saying that there were no more classified documents at Trump’s home, then went into Trump’s home and found those classified documents, putting Bobb on the legal hook. So of course she’s now kicking around the idea of cooperating against Trump. At worst she’s already committed obstruction of justice and if she wants to avoid prison she’ll need an immunity deal in exchange for cooperating against Trump. At best she’s a material witness against Trump, and will be committing obstruction if she doesn’t cooperate against Trump.

But whether or not Bobb goes through with her stated intent to cooperate with the DOJ, there are other people in Trump’s orbit who are potentially a lot closer to cutting cooperation deals. Although it’s getting almost no media coverage, Trump money man Tom Barrack is on criminal trial right now for allegedly acting as essentially a spy for a Middle Eastern foreign government while he was serving as a Trump adviser.

The leaders of the Oath Keepers are also on criminal trial right now for seditious conspiracy. Their trial defense strategy largely revolves around the claim that they thought they were legally justified in orchestrating the Capitol attack because they’d been led to believe that Trump was going to legalize the attack by enacting the Insurrection Act.

There’s a small chance Barrack and/or the Oath Keepers leaders will be acquitted. But given the DOJ’s track record at trial, it seems overwhelmingly likely that they’ll be convicted. If so, those convictions will come within weeks. At that point, each of them will have to decide whether to rot in prison while attempting an appeal that’s unlikely to succeed, or whether to simply flip on Trump at that point.

One of the big advantages the DOJ has in putting several Oath Keepers leaders on trial at once is that if they’re convicted, it’ll set up a situation where they’ll each feel pressure to hurry up and cut a cooperation deal before the others can. After all, at least one of them is likely to end up cutting a deal against the others, so they each have to think about getting out ahead of the others.

The upshot is that within a few weeks, the DOJ will likely gain one or more cooperating witnesses as a result of convictions in these current criminal trials. If Barrack is convicted and flips, he can likely take down Trump directly. If Oath Keepers leaders are convicted and flip, they can (at the least) take down Trump’s top political advisers, who would then be pressured into flipping on Trump.

   

So even as we wait to see whether Trump lawyer Christina Bobb is smart enough to cut an immediate cooperation deal against Trump in order to save her own backside, some other dummies in Trump world who should have cut a cooperation deal a long time ago are now about to be convicted. The DOJ just loves flipping cooperating witnesses, and it’s about to have access to a number of potential reinforcements.

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