Let’s walk through this meeting process.
David Cearley

  1. “ Would it be a crime for Trump Jr to accept dirt on Hillary from the Russian government? Actually no, it’s called opposition research.” Actually it is illegal for a campaign to accept anything of value from a foreign national. You can’t accept campaign contributions from foreigners. Opposition research would certainly have value.
  2. “ Even if it was a crime, no information was exchanged, so no crime.” It might be criminal conspiracy. If my buddy and I get together and start planning a bank robber, we’ve committed conspiracy. If you want to hire a hitman and you set up a meeting to pay the guy, you still have committed a crime if it turns out the guy is an FBI agent or he later has a change of heart.
  3. “ The UK spy dossier on Trump partying on Hillary’s bed in Moscow paid for by democrats doing opposition research?” The spy dossier was allegedly initially funded by “Never Trump” republicans. Some dem donors allegedly then started paying for it. But private individuals are not treated the same as political campaigns. The better comparisons would be the stories about some dem operative trying to get opposition research from the Ukranian government. Regardless, this was clearly the Trump campaign taking action, not the GOP or private individuals. Second, “they did it too” isn’t a legal defense.
  4. “Trump Jr definitely tried to get dirt on his Father’s political opponent, but that’s hardly a crime.” It may be if the dirt was obtained or was going to be obtained illegally or if accepting the dirt is considered accepting something of value from a foreign national. It really and truly does matter who was providing the oppo and who was accepting it. These distinctions are arguably legally meaningful.
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