Former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said Wednesday on MSNBC’s “All In” that if the Department of Justice failed to prosecute former President Donald Trump, it would harm our democracy.
Johnson said, “Based upon everything we know from public sources, including, most notably, the January 6 hearings, I believe that an aggressive prosecutor would be willing to take on the case against Donald Trump for participation in a seditious conspiracy, for a violation of the insurrection statute. In my opinion, January 6 was the very definition of an insurrection. And the statute punishes those who incited the insurrection and those who give aid and comfort thereto. Donald Trump lit the match. There were moments during January 6 where he poured gasoline on the fire, and he was the commander-in-chief of all the firemen and failed to call them in. I believe that we are well within the range of potential criminal liability if an aggressive prosecutor is willing to take that on.”
Hayes said, “I wonder, what do you think about the case of this will be bad for the country?”
Johnson said, “I respect and admire what Gerald Ford did in 1974, ’75, sparing the country from the prosecution of Richard Nixon. I think we live in different times right now. An argument could be made that if there is an indictable case against the former president, yet we fail to prosecute him, we may be doing more harm to our democracy than if we forbear. It is a different time now. And in my judgment, the actions that occurred during the Trump presidency, around January 6 and before we’re far more serious than Watergate.”
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