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Old Ken Starr Document May Come Back to Bite Trump: “It is proper, constitutional, and legal for a federal grand jury to indict a sitting president”

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Old Ken Starr Document May Come Back to Bite Trump: “It is proper, constitutional, and legal for a federal grand jury to indict a sitting president”


The New York Times has uncovered a 19-year-old memo from Starr under the the Freedom of Information Act that makes things more complicated.

As many ponder whether or not a President is immune to indictment, this report suggests that the Starr memo may aid Special Counsel Robert Mueller in his investigation into Donald Trump’s ties to the Russian collusion scandal.

From the Times:
The 56-page memo, locked in the National Archives for nearly two decades and obtained by The New York Times under the Freedom of Information Act, amounts to the most thorough government-commissioned analysis rejecting a generally held view that presidents are immune from prosecution while in office.

“It is proper, constitutional, and legal for a federal grand jury to indict a sitting president for serious criminal acts that are not part of, and are contrary to, the president’s official duties,” the Starr office memo concludes. “In this country, no one, even President Clinton, is above the law.”

Mr. Starr assigned Ronald Rotunda, a prominent conservative professor of constitutional law and ethics whom Mr. Starr hired as a consultant on his legal team, to write the memo in spring 1998 after deputies advised him that they had gathered enough evidence to ask a grand jury to indict Mr. Clinton, the memo shows.

DailyKos.com explains why this has potential to be a big deal in this investigation:

What the Starr memo gives credence to is the possibility that Robert Mueller III, the former FBI director who is now special counsel, may have more options than is generally thought to be the case when it comes to action he might take when he has completed his inquiry into Trump’s campaign dealings with Russia and whether he obstructed justice. If Mueller found enough evidence to indict and consequently chose to accept the Jaworski and Starr point of view, he would still have to ponder the impact of the anything-but-small political fallout from taking the momentous step of indicting a sitting president for the first time in the history of the Republic.

While most say Trump can’t be indicted because he’s a sitting president, that just may not be true.


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