What happened concerning Donald Trump, Jr.'s meeting with a Russia lawyer was not illegal. "There is one final law to be considered. Under the Federal Election Campaign Act, soliciting and/or receiving foreign donations is prohibited (11 CFR 110.20). This includes “money or other thing of value.” Is information, by itself, a “thing of value?” One could attempt to make that argument, but it has never been interpreted that way." (http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/07/11/gregg-jarrett-donald-trump-jr-has-broken-no-law.html)If you want to make the argument that it was illegal, you'll have to face applying it, including retroactively, to all candidates. If you think Hillary Clinton did not hold any meetings with any non-US citizens/nationals where she knew she'd be hearing information (of value) to further her campaign, your crystal ball is better than mine.
You can't arbitrarily decide when to apply a standard (including a new interpretation or application) and remain credible.
Are you really willing to take down every Democrat too whose campaign included anyone who ever met during that campaign with a non-US citizen/national to obtain valuable information for the campaign? I'm not.
More importantly and not covered by Gregg Jarrett, there was no solicitation (or receipt).
I've read both and see no way to prevail using the position that either the emails or meeting was illegal.
Here's something else for you to ponder while you're at it. What if the lawyer had supplied proof positive of major law breaking by Hillary Clinton, so major and so condemnable by both sides of the aisle, that she'd not only have had to withdraw from the race but would have definitely faced criminal charges, conviction, and sentencing to a long prison term? Would you claim that the Trump campaign broke the law obtaining it in the meeting between Trump and the lawyer?
Supplying actual evidence of any important illegal activity (above the level of infrequent, minor infractions) by any candidate for public office is "meddling" I more than welcome from any nation's government.
If it is ever declared illegal for a candidate or campaign in the US to accept and disseminate such evidence, you can be sure that declaration is a criminal-protection declaration at the direct and negative expense of what little democracy we have.
How could a candidate be working to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States while knowingly concealing the important illegal dealings of that candidate's election opponent, illegal dealings that, depending upon the nature of the crimes(s), could constitute plotting the violent overthrow of the Constitution? Some laws trump others. In the secular state of the US, we start at the top (the US Constitution) as the law that trumps all others. Concealing such illegality would constitute aiding and abetting by simply keeping silent about it. That would certainly be a greater legal infraction than any violation being claimed against Trump, Jr. right now.
The above constitutes a lightly edited compilation of various social-media commentary of mine over the last several days.
The following should appear at the end of every post:
According to the IRS, "Know the law: Avoid political campaign intervention":
Tax-exempt section 501(c)(3) organizations like churches, universities, and hospitals must follow the law regarding political campaigns. Unfortunately, some don't know the law.
Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are prohibited from participating in any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. The prohibition applies to campaigns at the federal, state and local level.
Violation of this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes. Section 501(c)(3) private foundations are subject to additional restrictions.
Political Campaign Intervention
Political campaign intervention includes any activities that favor or oppose one or more candidates for public office. The prohibition extends beyond candidate endorsements.
Contributions to political campaign funds, public statements of support or opposition (verbal or written) made by or on behalf of an organization, and the distribution of materials prepared by others that support or oppose any candidate for public office all violate the prohibition on political campaign intervention.
Factors in determining whether a communication results in political campaign intervention include the following:
- Whether the statement identifies one or more candidates for a given public office
- Whether the statement expresses approval or disapproval of one or more candidates' positions and/or actions
- Whether the statement is delivered close in time to the election
- Whether the statement makes reference to voting or an election
- Whether the issue addressed distinguishes candidates for a given office
Many religious organizations believe, as we do, that the above constitutes a violation of the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
That said, we make the following absolutely clear here:
- The Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project not only do not endorse any candidate for any secular office, we say that Christianity forbids voting in such elections.
- Furthermore, when we discuss any public-office holder's position, policy, action or inaction, we definitely are not encouraging anyone to vote for that office holder's position.
- We are not trying to influence secular elections but rather want people to come out from that entire fallen system.
- When we analyze or discuss what is termed "public policy," we do it entirely from a theological standpoint with an eye to educating professing Christians and those to whom we are openly always proselytizing to convert to authentic Christianity.
- It is impossible for us to fully evangelize and proselytize without directly discussing the pros and cons of public policy and the positions of secular-office holders, hence the unconstitutionality of the IRS code on the matter.
- We are not rich and wouldn't be looking for a fight regardless. What we cannot do is compromise our faith (which seeks to harm nobody, quite the contrary).
- We render unto Caesar what is Caesar's. We render unto God what is God's.
- When Caesar says to us that unless we shut up about the unrighteousness of Caesar's policies and practices, we will lose the ability of people who donate to us to declare their donations as deductions on their federal and state income-tax returns, we say to Caesar that we cannot shut up while exercising our religion in a very reasonable way.
- We consider the IRS code on this matter as deliberate economic duress (a form of coercion) and a direct attempt by the federal government to censor dissenting, free political and religious speech.
- It's not freedom of religion if they tax it.
And when they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute? He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers? Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free. (Matthew 17:24-26)