Washington Post editorial demands Congress investigate 'alleged co-conspirator' Trump

Michael Cohen leaves court
(Image credit: Yana Paskova/Getty Images)

"For a witch hunt," The New York Times said in a Tuesday night editorial, Special Counsel Robert Mueller's "investigation has already bagged a remarkable number of witches. Only the best witches, you might say." On Tuesday, Mueller's team secured guilty verdicts for former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, and Trump lawyer/fixer Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to, among other crimes, trying to sway the 2016 election by paying off two purported Trump mistresses "at the direction of" Trump.

"Let that sink in: Mr. Trump's own lawyer has now accused him, under oath, of committing a felony," the Times editorialists wrote. "Only a complete fantasist — that is, only President Trump and his cult — could continue to claim that this investigation of foreign subversion of an American election ... is a 'hoax' or 'scam' or 'rigged witch hunt.'"

The Manafort and Cohen cases "are a damaging commentary on the shady operators Donald Trump associated with," The Wall Street Journal said in an editorial, but "the evidence in both cases is unrelated to the Russian collusion claims that set these prosecutions in motion." Mueller won't indict Trump, the Journal predicted, and "voters may want to see more than evidence about payments to a porn star to overturn the results of a presidential election."

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The president was just "credibly accused in federal court of directing one of his subordinates to commit a federal crime," The Washington Post said in an editorial. "Trump cannot pretend these crimes did not occur or that they have nothing to do with him. Neither can Congress." The Constitution largely leaves Trump's fate up to Congress, "and powerful Republican lawmakers have seemed more interested in covering for Mr. Trump than investigating him," the Post said. This "partisan abdication of public duty" must end, and "Congress must open investigations into Mr. Trump's role in the crime Mr. Cohen has admitted to. ... Legislators cannot in good conscience ignore an alleged co-conspirator in the White House."

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Peter Weber

Peter Weber is a senior editor at TheWeek.com, and has handled the editorial night shift since the website launched in 2008. A graduate of Northwestern University, Peter has worked at Facts on File and The New York Times Magazine. He speaks Spanish and Italian and plays bass and rhythm cello in an Austin rock band. Follow him on Twitter.