by Tom Sullivan
"You want the obvious, you'll get the obvious," Todd Rundgren once sang. And yet, the news is so busy reporting scandalous "breaking news" every day, it misses the obvious.
Breaking news at this hour: President Donald Trump's former adviser Roger Stone was arrested Friday on charges of charges of obstruction of justice, giving false statements and witness tampering.
Breaking news last night: The Trump White House in an unprecedented action overruled two of its career security specialists and granted top secret clearances to Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner, as well as about 30 others, after FBI background checks turned up concerns they posed security risks.
Almost lost in Thursday night's breakage was a stunning exchange on MSNBC's "All In" between host Chris Hayes, former assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York Mimi Rocah, and former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner.
Under discussion was news that the Senate Intelligence Committee would subpoena Michael Cohen. The former Trump lawyer and Trump Organization vice-president was convicted in December to three years in prison for "a 'veritable smorgasbord' of criminal conduct, including making false statements to Congress about the scope and status of a proposed Trump Tower Moscow project," NBC reports:
The move comes a day after Cohen delayed his public testimony before the House Oversight Committee over alleged "ongoing threats against his family from President Trump" and members of his legal team, [Cohen's attorney Lanny] Davis said in a statement Wednesday.Rocah appeared flabbergasted that the sitting president was making public threats, telling Hayes, "It's absolutely mob tactics. I do not think that's hyperbole. I did mob cases cases for 16 years and this is right out of their playbook."
Cohen will testify on Feb. 12, a source with direct knowledge of the matter told NBC News.
Because the threats are so open they may be harder for the public to see, Rocah said, offering a hypothetical case. (MSNBC has not yet posted YouTube video of the exchange.)
Kevin Corke, @FoxNews “Don’t forget, Michael Cohen has already been convicted of perjury and fraud, and as recently as this week, the Wall Street Journal has suggested that he may have stolen tens of thousands of dollars....” Lying to reduce his jail time! Watch father-in-law!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 18, 2019
... efforts to intimidate witnesses, scare their family members, or prevent them from testifying before Congress are textbook mob tactics that we condemn in the strongest terms. Our nation’s laws prohibit efforts to discourage, intimidate, or otherwise pressure a witness not to provide testimony to Congress. The President should make no statement or take any action to obstruct Congress’ independent oversight and investigative efforts, including by seeking to discourage any witness from testifying in response to a duly authorized request from Congress.Donald Trump has spent a lifetime treating the law as a weapon to wield against opponents, and otherwise as an inconvenience for him to ignore. Career prosecutors know it. Special Counsel Robert Mueller knows it. His whole life, Donald Trump has been able to get away with it.