Richard Nixon famously violated his oath of office as President and the very fabric of democracy by planning, facilitating the execution of, and covering up a break in of the Democratic National Committee to swing an election in his favor. In the process of covering up his crime, Nixon destroyed 18.5 minutes of the incriminating conversations he had recorded in the Oval Office. He resigned rather than be impeached.
As a result of the crimes by the Nixon administration, in 1978 Congress passed the Presidential Records Act requiring all presidential papers and communications be recorded and preserved. These records are then to be turned over to the National Archives and Records Administration.
Now it has been revealed that Donald Trump’s phone records for the day of the January 6 insurrection have a seven-and-a-half-hour gap in which no phone calls were recorded. This is despite firsthand accounts from witnesses that Trump spent numerous hours on the phone that day.
While Trump may have used burner phones or the personal phones of his aids and security guards to try to circumvent having any official record of the crimes he was committing, there are calls that are known to have been placed from Trump’s White House phone that aren’t reflected in the records. This clearly suggests that the Trump administration has altered and/or falsified these records.
Trump has stated he doesn’t know what a burner phone is and has never used one. However, Trump’s former National Security Advisor John Bolton immediately shot down that lie, stating he personally has had conversations with Trump about burner phones and that Trump clearly understood the appeal of using them to hide illegal activity.
This should come as little surprise. Trump told over 30,000 lies during his four years in office. Why should now be any different?
These 7.5 hours of missing phone logs aren’t just any old 7.5 hours. These are the hours during which Trump’s cult followers, at his bequest, descended on the Capitol, attacked the police, and broke into the building intent on stopping the certification of votes confirming Joe Biden as the lawfully elected President of the United States. They also were reportedly aiming to kill House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Mike Pence. They injured over 140 police officers and caused millions of dollars of damage to the historic structure.
During this time Trump is known to have talked to Rep. Jim Jordan, Sen. Mike Lee, Sen. Tommy Tuberville, and Rep. Kevin McCarthy among others. Yet there are no records of Trump’s calls to these men. To say this is suspicious is an understatement.
Trump’s refusal to produce an accurate account of his conversations and other communications on the date of his January 6 attempt to overthrow the government is not his first or only violation of the Presidential Records Act.
Former Trump aides have testified that the failed businessman and reality TV host regularly ripped up paperwork that should have been preserved in the national records. He also instructed aids to burn records he didn’t want seen and is known to have clogged up the toilets in the White House flushing sensitive documents down the sewer. One witness stated they observed Trump resort to eating notes he considered highly implicating.
Trump was repeatedly reminded of the Presidential Records Act and his obligations to maintain accurate records. It didn’t matter. He continued to flaunt his belief that laws don’t apply to him. He also illegally took 15 boxes of top-secret confidential paperwork when he left the White House that had to be forcibly retrieved.
U.S. District Court Judge David Carter went on record recently stating that Trump’s attempts to overturn his 2020 election defeat and install himself in power amounted to a coup. The federal judge stated that “the illegality of the plan was obvious” and that Trump had committed a felony.
In the 240 years of America’s history, charging a former President with a crime has never been done. To do so would forever tarnish the very image of the presidency. That’s the reason President Gerald Ford pardoned former President Richard Nixon.
That was also the argument many Republicans made when voting not to remove Trump after he was impeached for his role in motivating the January 6 attack on the Capitol. Even though there was no denying he was guilty, they said Trump will learn his lesson and disappear quietly into the sunset with his tail between his legs. There’s no reason to shame him, they said.
We have since learned that Trump and his co-conspirators had been planning the attack on the Capitol in conjunction with right-wing extremist groups including the Oath Keepers. Joshua James, a prominent figure in the Oath Keepers, has already pleaded guilty to seditious conspiracy. He testified that storming the Capitol had been planned; it did not happen organically.
We have further learned that Trump and his co-conspirators were also involved in a highly illegal plot to overturn the results of the free and fair election and install him as leader. This plot was described in detail by Trump advisor Peter Navarro live on MSNBC television, admitting to all the elements of attempting a coup.
The plan had been concocted by attorney John Eastman, who has since admitted in interviews that they knew the plan broke the law.
We have also not seen Trump fade away as Sen. Mitch McConnell promised he would when the Senate acquitted him. He has grown louder and bolder with his looney tunes Big Lie that he didn’t lose the election and there was widespread voter fraud. This has been repeatedly debunked. Trump lost the election by over 7 million votes in what his own administration called the most secure election in history.
Regrettably, it is time for a former President to be charged with a crime. Donald Trump is engaged in a coverup of epic proportions of unprecedented crimes while in office. He cannot be allowed to get away with his felonies. It’s time for Attorney General Merrick Garland to finish making his case and prosecute this criminal.
Peace. Love. Trust.
If you appreciate the nature of my words here, I ask that you take just a moment to share this article with your social media of choice. Follow me on Facebook (/rikki.travolta) and Twitter (@RikkiLeeTV)