On “Meet the Press” Sunday, host Chuck Todd grilled visibly uncomfortable former Manhattan DA Cy Vance, asking him why he didn’t bring a case against former President Trump when he had the chance and why his successor chose to do so instead.
(Video Credit: Meet the Press)
Todd referred to a Washington Post editorial which is openly questioning the wisdom of bringing an incontrovertibly weak case against the former president, making it appear as though he’s being politically persecuted and strengthening his chances of winning the presidential race in 2024.
“This prosecution is now bound to be the test case for any future former president, as well as, of course, proceedings against this former president… A failed prosecution over the hush-money payment could put them all in jeopardy, as well as provide Mr. Trump ammunition for his accusations of ‘witch hunt’… This prosecution needs to be airtight. Otherwise, it’s not worth continuing,” the Washington Post wrote.
The NBC host wanted to know why Vance did not pursue the charges initially against Trump and squarely put the former Manhattan district attorney in the hot seat over it.
“‘This prosecution needs to be airtight, otherwise it’s not worth continuing,’” Todd quoted the op-ed. “Is there any doubt in your mind that this case is airtight?”
“Well, I do not know if this case is airtight or not,” Vance responded, squirming in his seat. “I know that the DA’s office has extremely experienced and seasoned lawyers.”
The Federal Election Commission declined to bring this case.
The DOJ declined to bring this case.
The Southern District of New York declined to bring this case.
The previous Manhattan DA Cy Vance declined to bring this case.
The Trump indictment is frivolous. #Verdict
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) April 2, 2023
Todd then got to the heart of the matter and dropped it on Vance.
“Why didn’t you charge the hush money case?” he asked Vance. “Why didn’t you ever charge it in 2018, 2019, 2020?”
“I don’t want to get into the deliberations that might be covered by grand jury material,” Vance waffled. “But — as I believe you know — I was asked by the US attorney’s office of the Southern District to stand down on our investigation, which had commenced involving the Trump Organization. And as you know, as someone who respects that office a great deal and believing that they may have perhaps the best laws to investigate, I did so.”
Todd was not satisfied with his equivocation and continued to corner Vance over the issue.
“Did your office conclude that a stand-alone felony charge for these hush money payments wasn’t worth it because of so many of the uncertainties around the legal theory?” he asked the leftist DA. “And that’s why you were pursuing this larger issue, that this was just one part of sort of how the Trump Organization lied on their on their business records.”
“Well, I think, Chuck, again, I don’t want to get into our deliberations,” Vance replied, attempting to give himself cover and avoid answering Todd’s question. “But we have historically filed cases of false documentation, elevating them to felonies when federal statutes were involved. It’s never been done that I know of with regard to federal election law, which is quite a specific area of law. But I think the question is not so much why didn’t I do it or we did it, but why this district attorney is doing it. And that really requires us to be patient and to wait. This process isn’t going to be accelerated by us talking about it.”
The Manhattan grand jury handed down its indictment against Trump last Thursday. Reports have it that there are at least 30 counts related to business fraud in the indictment although the specifics of it are still sealed.
Grand jury allegedly throw the book at Trump-indicting him on over 30 chargeshttps://t.co/0TIOcjPjN0
— American Wire News (@americanwire_) March 31, 2023
Trump will reportedly be arraigned in New York on Tuesday and is expected to be fingerprinted and have his mugshot taken at that time.
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