Eric Thompson

‘Hush money’ is Not a Crime, and Bragg Has No Case Against Trump

In the fervent pursuit of justice, it’s crucial to distinguish between what may be ethically questionable and what is legally prosecutable.

The case against former President Donald Trump regarding alleged ‘hush money’ payments is a prime example where this distinction becomes paramount. Critics argue that Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg has overstepped his bounds, embarking on a politically motivated witch hunt rather than upholding the law.

At the heart of this controversy are payments made to two women during Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, which prosecutors claim were intended to silence allegations of past affairs, thereby influencing the election outcome. However, as legal experts scrutinize the details, it becomes increasingly clear that labeling these transactions as criminal acts is not only a stretch but potentially an abuse of prosecutorial discretion.

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The argument hinges on whether these payments constituted campaign finance violations. According to federal law, campaign contributions and expenditures must be reported accurately. Yet, there’s a significant difference between unreported campaign expenses and personal funds used discretely for reasons that may or may not relate to an election.

Trump’s defense maintains that the payments were personal in nature and thus fall outside the purview of campaign finance laws. This perspective finds support in precedent; in 2012, John Edwards faced similar accusations but was acquitted because it could not be proven that his intent was primarily political rather than personal.

The problem that Dems face is that what they want to accuse Trump of is not a crime.

Moreover, even if one were to consider these payments as related to the campaign, they would at most constitute a civil violation of federal election law—hardly the stuff of criminal proceedings. The Federal Election Commission (FEC) typically handles such matters administratively with fines, not criminal charges.

The New York Post editorial board has been vocal about this distinction: “Paying hush money is sleazy but not criminal.” They argue that Bragg’s case rests on shaky ground since there is no clear statute under New York law making such payments illegal. Furthermore, they suggest that Bragg’s actions could set a dangerous precedent where private transactions are retroactively criminalized based on subjective interpretations of intent.

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Legal scholars have also pointed out another critical flaw in Bragg’s approach: proving beyond reasonable doubt that Trump had criminal intent when making these payments will be an uphill battle. Without concrete evidence directly linking Trump’s actions to an explicit attempt at election manipulation, any charges brought forth seem speculative at best.

The Daily Mail provides live updates on the trial proceedings and notes how Trump’s legal team has consistently challenged the prosecution’s narrative. They emphasize that for all intents and purposes within legal contexts, ‘hush money’ does not automatically equate to a crime unless specific criteria are met—criteria which appear absent in this case.

Furthermore, critics have raised concerns about selective prosecution—a scenario where similar actions by different individuals result in disparate legal responses based solely on their political affiliations or prominence. This inconsistency undermines public trust in impartial justice systems and fuels perceptions of political bias within legal institutions.

It should also be noted that Trump himself has remained defiant throughout this process. He has repeatedly dismissed the charges as part of a “witch hunt” against him by political adversaries who have failed to defeat him through electoral means or previous investigations.

As observers follow this unfolding drama with bated breath, one cannot help but question whether justice is truly being served or if we’re witnessing yet another chapter in an ongoing saga marked by partisan politics masquerading as legal scrutiny. The implications extend far beyond one man; they touch upon fundamental principles like fairness under law and equal treatment before it.

While some may view these developments with schadenfreude or moral vindication against a polarizing figure like Trump, others see them as symptomatic of deeper issues plaguing our judicial system—issues such as prosecutorial overreach and weaponization of legal frameworks for political ends.

As this story continues to develop with each passing day in courtrooms filled with arguments and counterarguments, public opinion remains sharply divided. Yet amidst this division lies a shared understanding: In America’s justice system—as flawed as it may sometimes seem—the burden of proof lies squarely on those who allege wrongdoing. And until proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt within the confines of established law—not public sentiment or political expediency—an individual stands innocent.

Thus far into the proceedings against Donald Trump regarding ‘hush money’ allegations, many remain unconvinced by DA Bragg’s case—a sentiment echoed across conservative circles who view these charges with skepticism rooted in both legal reasoning and concern for due process rights. As more details emerge from courtrooms filled with lawyers’ rhetoric and evidentiary debates, observers continue watching closely while withholding final judgment until all facts are laid bare before Lady Justice’s scales.


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