Paul Manafort is either too clinically incapable of refraining from lying and cheating, or too naive to understand how pardons really work, or the world’s stupidest criminal – or perhaps all of the above. After cutting a plea deal with Robert Mueller, he got busted in a way that’ll leave him in prison for the rest of his life. Now the hits just keep coming.
Remember Preet Bharara? He’s the former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York who was fired by Donald Trump, simply because Trump was afraid Bharara would do too good of a job. Now Bharara is a political rock star, and the SDNY has prosecuted Trump’s pals anyway. Bharara isn’t holding back, tweeting: “Paul Manafort appears to be a congenital liar. And can’t even tell the truth to help himself out of prison time. And had the arrogance repeatedly to think he could get away with it — witness tampering too. He’s a pretty rare bird. You can see why Trump was drawn to him.”
Then there’s Adam Schiff. Donald Trump is so worried about Schiff’s incoming role as House Intel Committee Chairman, he recently branded him “Adam Schitt.” In any case, he’s a former prosecutor, and here’s how he sees it: “After trying to tamper with witnesses and getting caught, Manafort should have learned not to mess with Robert Mueller. Apparently he did not.”
The bottom line: the smart prosecutors think Paul Manafort just cooked his own goose. No magic pardons, no path to freedom, just a guy who threw his life away for no gain. One might be tempted to feel sorry for Manafort, if he weren’t a career criminal who conspired with Russia to commit treason against the United States.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report