According to The New York Times, Donald Trump acknowledged discussing Joe Biden with the Ukrainian president in July. Trump accuses Biden of corruption tied to business in the Ukraine. The New York Times quoted Trump as telling the Ukrainian president that Trump did not want “our people” adding “to the corruption already in the Ukraine.”
Forget impeachment and what the Democrats will do now and focus on the fact that Donald Trump acknowledged accusing Joe Biden of corrupt practices in the Ukraine. Biden’s son is also in the mix of the corruption allegation.
There are obviously two ongoing arguments – it means nothing move on to this is the moment impeachment begins. The fact is that there is only one thing we know – the conversation took place and the it included allegations of corruption against Joe Biden.
Here is the thing about the allegation.
It involves one or more U.S. citizens allegedly doing corrupt things in a foreign country.
The debate, so far, is that Donald Trump is trying to have his political opponent investigated by the Ukraine. That may be so. But here is the thing, any U.S. citizen bribing or acting corruptly in a foreign country can be investigated and tried in the United States, even though the alleged acts happened in a foreign country.
The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) prohibits payment of bribes to foreign officials to assist in obtaining or retaining business. Each conviction carries with it up to five years of prison. The law applies to individuals and their companies. Two U.S. government departments investigate crimes under FCPA, the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Several companies have paid fines because of FCPA enforcement action. Among them are ALCOA, Hewlett Packard and the Walmart subsidiary in México.
In 2009, William Jefferson, a former Democrat representative was sentenced to 13 years on corruption charges stemming from an FCPA investigation into bribes to African government officials.
So the obvious question is why has the U.S. Department of Justice not filed corruption charges against the Bidens? Donald Trump alleges they are corrupt. Instead of trying to get the Ukrainian government to investigate the corruption, why not have the U.S. government do so?
Because it is about optics.
A DOJ investigation into Biden and his son may look bad for Donald Trump and thus the game of “look here and not over there” is played out.
We are over 130 days away from the 2020 elections and already the stage is set for it to be one of the dirtiest political fights in history.
That should not surprise anyone because anything involving Donald Trump takes us to the twilight of decency.