Trump has beat out Obama, bigly, but if things keep going the way they are now – the Trump administration convictions might surpass those of Richard Nixon.
Trump campaigned on draining the swamp, but, by all accounts – the swamp has gotten much larger under his administration.
Looking at the Russia investigation, The New York Times reported last week that:
Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel investigating possible links between the Trump campaign and Russian officials, has issued more than 100 criminal counts against 32 people and three companies. Additionally, Michael D. Cohen, a former lawyer of President Trump, pleaded guilty to charges that stemmed from evidence originally found by Mr. Mueller’s inquiry, including campaign finance violations related to payments made to two women who said they had affairs with Mr. Trump.
This figure includes former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort’s conviction last week on 8 federal felonies and the guilty pleas of six others: former Trump attorney Michael Cohen, former campaign advisor Rick Gates, former Manafort and Gates lawyer Alex van der Zwaan, former national security advisor Michael Flynn, former campaign advisor George Papadopoulos, and Richard Pinedo – a California man who sold bank accounts online.
CNN published an article on Tuesday comparing the level of corruption in the Trump administration to that of other administrations subsequent to the election of Richard Nixon.
Counting convictions going backwards, CNN began with Trump’s nearest predecessor, President Obama:
[O]ver eight years there was only one person in the Obama executive branch who pleaded guilty to a crime — and it was a misdemeanor. That would be then-CIA director David Petraeus, who pleaded guilty to one count of removing and retaining classified information in conjunction with a tawdry affair. He received two years probation and paid a $100,000 fine.
George W. Bush:
[E]ight members of his administration got caught up in the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal. In total, there were 21 criminal convictions and guilty pleas from 43’s administration and 10 prison sentences — including Vice President Dick Cheney’s Chief of Staff Scooter Libby.
Clinton’s executive branch had only two convictions and guilty pleas: former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Henry Cisneros, who pleaded guilty to lying about payments to a mistress dating back to his time as mayor of San Antonio, and Ronald Blackley, a chief of staff to Agriculture Secretary Mike Espy, who lied to an independent counsel looking into his boss for accepting improper gifts. Espy was acquitted and is currently running for Senate in Mississippi.
George H.W. Bush:
George H. W. Bush presided over a comparatively clean administration, with only one conviction and prison sentence doled out to a senior member of his administration. Catalina V. Villalpando, the US treasurer, whose name was printed on all dollars, pleaded guilty to three felony counts after leaving office, including tax evasion, obstruction of justice and making false statements.
[H]is administration saw a whopping 24 convictions and guilty pleas over eight years. They were largely related to the Iran-Contra scandal, whose most famous protagonist today is probably Oliver North.
Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford:
No convictions, “though Ford’s Agriculture Secretary Earl Butz was later convicted of tax evasion.”
[D]ozens of Nixon administration and campaign aides convicted, at least 10 of whom were primary players who served jail time in connection with Watergate, were not small players. Even before Watergate broke wide open, Nixon’s “law and order” Vice President Spiro Agnew resigned in disgrace for accepting bribes when he was governor of Maryland.
As CNN reported at the beginning of their article: “with a second Manafort trial yet to come and the Mueller investigation still incomplete, there may very well be more convictions on the horizon.”
CNN concluded their article reporting that: this comparison “reveals that not every administration is the same when it comes to creating a culture of corruption — and less than two years into his administration, President Donald Trump may be on pace to equal or exceed the record set by his swampiest predecessor, Richard Nixon.”
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