Witness tampering is what criminals do

When someone mentions witness tampering, I think of Mafia hoods bribing or threatening witnesses, or, in Russia, Putin’s goons killing them and dumping their bodies in the river that flowing through Moscow.

It looks like Trump’s gang has joined the party.

Cassidy Hutchinson, who testified Wednesday, told the House committee investigating the Capitol riot that someone contacted her.

Committee member Liz Cheney said Tuesday “two witnesses — whom she did not name — told the committee they had heard from people connected to former President Donald Trump’s world who may have been trying to intimidate them.” Hutchinson was one of them. (Read story here.)

Both witnesses were told Trump “was paying attention.” One of the witnesses was told, “a person let me know you have your deposition tomorrow. He wants me to let you know he’s thinking about you. He knows you’re loyal. And you’re going to do the right thing when you go in for your deposition.”

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out who that “person” was; “doing the right thing” is a phrase Trump used when he wanted Pence to block certifying the electoral votes, and has frequently used on other occasions when demanding support for his false “stolen election” claims.

Cheney said, “It gives us a real insight into how people around the former President are operating, into the extent to which they believe that they can affect the testimony of witnesses before the committee.” Eliezer Honig, a CNN legal analyst, didn’t mince words; he said, “This is not ‘arguable’ witness tampering, this is not ‘maybe’ witness tampering,” the committee “needs to send this to DOJ immediately, because that’s a crime.” (See story here.)

Sure sounds like it to me, too. But it’s already obvious Trump committed crimes (see story here); the only question is whether he’ll be prosecuted for them. And messing with witnesses is piling crimes on top of crimes. It might be enough to persuade hesitant prosecutors to go after him.

A final thought: America needs two competitive parties, but responsible citizens don’t vote for a criminal gang, and there’s a real question of whether that’s what the Republican Party is. I sure hope Republicans put Trump aside, or behind them, and straighten themselves out.

Related story: The “Q” behind QAnon is going after Hutchinson; read that story here.

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