According to a recent report on his legal strategy in the Fulton County prosecution launched by DA Fani Willis, POLITICO claims that former Trump chief of staff and ally Mark Meadows is considering turning on the former president as he seeks a way out of legal trouble.
As background, Mark Meadows, the former White House chief of staff, is accused of conspiring with Trump to rig Georgia’s 2020 election by pushing the state to help Trump out in the wake of the challenged election. DA Willis brought the charges against Meadows and other former Trump allies, along with the former president himself, by using the RICO statute.
The central allegation is that Trump, in his January 2, 2021, phone call in which he pressured Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find” more pro-Trump votes, which the prosecution is alleging was an attempt to rig the election rather than Trump just pressuring Raffensperger to make sure the election had been conducted as it was supposed to be and no votes were missing.
In any case, Meadows was involved in the situation because he, as the chief of staff for then-President Trump, ended up being the one who arranged the now-infamous call with Raffensberger. Meadows’ lawyers are arguing that his role on the call was minor and not as provocative as Trump’s.
Since the Trump aides were arrested and indicted, the POLITICO report claims, finger pointing has started as the former allies of the president try to defend themselves from DA Willis, with some considering turning on Trump as their way out. “And as his four criminal cases march toward trials, some of his aides, allies and co-defendants are pointing at the former president,” POLITICO claimed.
Continuing, POLITICO added that Meadows aims to blame then-President Trump for being the main person behind the call and alleged pressure on Raffensberger, saying, “And last week, Trump’s former White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows — also charged in the Georgia case — signaled that his defense is likely to include blaming the former president as the primary driver of the effort.”
If Meadows and others pursue such a strategy, it could prove fruitful depending on what the goal of the trial is. If it is to punish the former president’s allies, then they might be out of luck, with no one to whom they can pawn off their willingness to point the figure. However, if the goal is instead to lock up Trump, then their willingness to turn on him could prove more helpful to them.
Noting that being willing to point the finger could help if the goal is to get Trump, Scott Weinberg, an attorney who defended one of the Oath Keepers, told POLITICO, “Strategically speaking, if you are one of the lesser important players, you would definitely want to be in the same trial with Donald Trump. All of the focus is going to be on him. They don’t want the little guys, they want Trump. You’re always compared to who you’re next to.”
Featured image credit: By Office of Congressman Mark Meadows – https://www.instagram.com/p/B9SR3ARAiNg/, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=95052314
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