Eric Posner Writes About Trump’s Conviction

Rough Justice for Trump

Now that a Manhattan jury has convicted Donald Trump of falsifying business records in order to cover up a crime – whether it is an election-related or a tax-related crime is not clear – a host of new questions arise. Will Judge Juan Merchan send the former president to jail before the election in November, and, if so, will Trump nonetheless be re-elected and released? If the judge merely fines Trump or puts him on probation, what impact might that have on the outcome? Finally, will Trump get his conviction reversed on appeal? If so, what will that mean if he loses the election only after the reversal?

Many people worry that the trial may open “a new and destabilizing era of American politics,” as an editorial in the Wall Street Journal puts it. The Manhattan district attorney, Alvin Bragg, concocted a complex and unintuitive legal theory that made Trump guilty of a felony for crimes that are normally misdemeanors. Moreover, the offense did not injure anyone in any concrete way – unless you believe that pay stubs and accounting records deceived Americans into voting for a man whom they would have rejected had they known that he was a philanderer (which, of course, everyone already knew).

Read more at Project Syndicate

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