To understand the state of , and US society more broadly, a person has to realize that the process against isn’t merely two camps who want the guy found innocent or guilty after a weighing of the evidence.

No, it is as if there was a murder trial where one side believed they were having beers with the purported victim as the trial was going on.

It’s not a matter of legal technicality or weighing preponderances of evidence or reasonable doubt; it’s a matter of the country being divided over fundamental fact, here whether a person is alive or not.

It’s not a political division. Sadly it’s a reality division.


MAGA supporters don’t actually believe that the election was stolen. They never did. Look at the testimony in the Fox case. They admitted that the whole thing was just a ruse.

Nobody believes the election was stolen. They are just lying about it as a tactic to overthrow democracy.

They all know that Trump is a crook and they don’t care. And they are willing to lie about anything – absolutely anything – in order to eliminate democracy and install him as an autocrat.

There is no difference in belief about facts. There is a difference in belief about the value of truth and democracy.

@Pat sounds like you have not talked to a lot of MAGA folks.

I have. I know quite a few of them personally.

Your claims here aren’t in line with the discussions I’ve had with them, and honestly just sound like you are promoting negative stereotypes.

I disagree.

It is a division between those who believe laws do and should apply to everyone and those who believe their side should be able to break laws to get what they want.

It's not a reality problem. They cheer when their leaders act with impunity.


Based on everything I hear, everybody agrees that laws do and should apply to everyone.

The problem is that different people have different ideas about what the laws are in the first place and in the second place what has happened that the laws should apply to.

But do you have a specific example in mind saying otherwise?

I'll point to a clear and spoken one.

Grab them by the pussy.

He said he did it. One of his many victims just won a second case against him.

MAGA rationalized it away. They know it's a crime and after a few days of hesitation they decided to keep him as the candidate and elected him.

They *like* that he acts like he's above the law. They see him as a bad guy, but a bad guy on *their* side, so it's ok.


You’re conflating two different things, though, and I would say that if you listen to Trump supporters they end up going the opposite way from your conclusion.

There’s a difference between voting for somebody versus finding them guilty of breaking the law. If voters want to elect a felon, well he’s still been subject to the law, is just that for whatever reason the voters still wanted to vote for the criminal.

So those are two different things.

But, when I listen to mainstream conservatives talk about the legal penalties I don’t hear them saying that he shouldn’t pay. I hear them saying that he will have to pay, showing that he is subject to law, even if they don’t think the law was fairly implemented.

What I’m hearing when I listen to mainstream conservatives on the matter that you are bringing up is that Trump is absolutely subject to law, and the law is being used against him, therefore they should vote for him.

(To be clear, I think that’s stupid)

So in the end I think examples like these actually go the other way from your conclusion. It ends up being BECAUSE Trump supporters recognize that he is subject to law that they want to elect the guy to fix the laws that he is subject to.

Again, I repeat, I think that’s a really antisocial, arguably corrupt approach, but that’s what I’m hearing from them.

I still disagree.

They aren't saying they "want to elect the guy to fix the laws that he is subject to".

They don't want a law that makes rape and sexual assault ok for everyone because one of their core racist tropes is needing to protect "their white women" from rape by men of other races.

They want to elect him so he (and maybe, hopefully?, they) are not subject to the same laws as people who are not them. They know if he's elected, he will have the power to make the case and his punishment disappear.


Firstly, that legal idea is not factually true, not that Trump supporters are particularly familiar with the facts.

Even as president Trump was and is subject to state and local laws. He should have been charged already if local, state, or federal governments believed him to have broken those laws.

But from what I hear from so many Trump supporters, they’re not trying to shield him from legal accountability for what he did. They honestly just don’t believe he did it.

And for better or worse the circuses (multiple) that have sprung up around his legal challenges already have fed into that perception.

But again, the way our legal system works there have been numerous governments in positions to try him for these allegations, and they haven’t. So by law, with him being subject to our laws, he’s not ducking any laws so far.

The laws only works as far as someone will enforce them.

The federal government is full of institutionalists who believe it's more important to protect the office of President than to enforce laws against the current office holder. The DOJ decided (as they did with Clinton) to not prosecute while he was in office to protect the office of President.

Even in 2021-22, DOJ dragged their feet. It wasn't until Trump appeared to be returning and could win an election that institutionalist Merrick Garland finally picked a special prosecutor. He would rather Trump just disappear unpunished, but a 2nd Trump presidency threatens the institution of President as it's clear he will not leave again if elected.


Exactly my point.

The law is only work as far as someone will enforce them, and it’s not that Trump supporters are promoting him above the law, but rather that as we’ve seen, no enforcement entity in any state, local, or federal jurisdiction has determined that he would be subject to penalty as per the law.

He’s not above the law. The law just hasn’t come down on him.

To be clear, though, it’s generally up to the head of the executive branch of any government as to whether to charge someone with a crime. It’s certainly the case for the federal government, so if you or I would have liked Trump to have been charged during Obama or Biden terms we should hold that against Obama and Biden.

I certainly do.

The president is in charge of the federal executive branch, including the charging of people who have broken the law.

It’s very important to hold presidents accountable for the actions or inactions of their executive branch


It's up to the Attorney General. The President appoints the Attorney General and needs Senate confirmation.

Trump got his first two approved. The rest were just temporary. He was working towards getting control of it, and Heritage Foundation's Project 2025 is about empowering the Executive over the bureaucracy, but it hasn't gone that far in US history... yet.

@katrinakatrinka the attorney general is employed by the president to carry out his policies.

Remember, “The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America,” and since the power to charge is an executive power, it’s vested in the president.

And heck, even an acting attorney general can submit charges without having been approved by the Senate.

We need to emphatically state that presidents are responsible for their branch and not let presidents escape accountability by blaming their employees.

@katrinakatrinka vox is a terrible source, often getting things wrong and going for the sensational clickbait instead of solid reporting.

But all you need to know is what I quoted above: “The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America,”

Vox and others can write whatever they want, but when they run up against fundamental elements of the design of the US government, well they can’t talk themselves around that simple element.

But let me point out a different thing about this situation: I couldn’t care less whether Trump is unhappy, BUT we should be pointing out his failure to prosecute Clinton as one reason potential Trump voters should dump the loser.

Trump has been spending quite a lot of time ducking responsibility for running his branch, and he needs to be called out on it.

I used Vox, but you can use any resource including law school analysis.

Your interpretation is incorrect... so far in our country.

Never can tell what the next administration might attempt.

@katrinakatrinka yes, we could spend all day picking and choosing our preferred experts to echo our sides, but we don’t need to since we can see for ourselves what’s laid out plain to see.

How many branches are there in the US government? Surely we can agree that there are three, right?

Well, with only three branches, legislative, executive, and judicial, there is no room for a fourth branch for the DOJ.

Therefore, the DOJ must be acting on authority of the president, in whom all executive power is vested.

We could change this and add a fourth branch if we’d like, but so far, that’s the fundamental design of the US government.

I don't understand why you continue. It's clear we're at an impasse in what we perceive as reality.

@katrinakatrinka well I’m trying to find the common ground!

That’s why I’m asking things like, can we at least agree that there are three branches? We share that reality, right?

You're trying to simplify a legal complexity. It's a non sequitur in this context.

@katrinakatrinka I go the other way around.

I’m not trying to simplify a legal complexity but rather trying to point out that it is simple and we don’t need to complexify it.

The president simply has control of the executive branch. We don’t need to make that more complicated by imagining independent legal institutions within the executive branch with all the complications that that would entail.

We can simply point out that it’s all up to the president and he has to be held accountable for everything that happens in his branch.

It overcomplicates things to try to grant some sort of independent agency within the branch somehow divorced from the constitutional order that defines it. We just don’t need to jump through those hoops.

It's not, though. And it's good that it's not.

Complications are good when you're dealing with someone trying to get too much power. It's hard to get authoritarians out without a lot of bloodshed once they get settled into a protective establishment.

Show more
Sign in to participate in the conversation
Qoto Mastodon

QOTO: Question Others to Teach Ourselves
An inclusive, Academic Freedom, instance
All cultures welcome.
Hate speech and harassment strictly forbidden.