A trial date has been set for New York Republican Congressman Chris Collins, who was indicted earlier this year for insider trading.
A federal judge on Thursday set a Feb. 3, 2020 trial date for Christopher Collins, a Republican U.S. congressman from New York who was charged earlier this year with taking part in an insider trading scheme involving an Australian biotechnology company.
One would think that a Congressman who is facing trial would resign. Nope, not in 2018, not if that politician is a Republican.
Chris Collins is actually right now in a tight race for re-election. A recent poll shows the race as essentially tied.
A new internal poll revealed Wednesday by Nate McMurray claims the race for New York’s 27th Congressional District is tied between the democrat and republican Chris Collins.
Chris Collins and Nate McMurray are each attracting 42 percent of the vote while Reform Party candidate Larry Piegza receives 6 percent and 10 percent of voters are undecided.
Yes, you read that correctly. A politician who has been indicted for insider trading very well might be re-elected to Congress. And it isn’t because the voters don’t know about the indictment.
Nine in ten voters (90%) report that they have heard, read, or seen information about Collins’ indictment, with a majority (57%) stating they have heard “a lot” about the indictment.
Apparently, Republican voters just don’t seem to mind if their elected representative is a criminal.
I suppose with Donald Trump, a criminal tax cheat and unindicted co-conspirator for felony campaign finance fraud, now acting as the current leader of the Republican party, criminality just isn’t a big deal anymore. It should not come as a surprise then that this indicted Congressman Chris Collins also holds the dubious distinction of being the first Congressman to endorse Donald Trump for President in 2016.
Criminals stick together.
Donald Trump on Wednesday picked up his first congressional endorsement as fellow New Yorker Rep. Chris Collins announced he was supporting the billionaire GOP presidential candidate.
Chris Collins is not the only criminal Republican to be associated with Donald Trump. He is just one of several Trump associates who have been indicted over the last two years.
Michael Cohen – Donald Trump’s Personal Lawyer
Michael Cohen, the former longtime fixer and personal attorney for Donald Trump, appeared in federal court in New York Tuesday afternoon, pleaded guilty to eight counts and said that he made illegal campaign contributions “in coordination and at the direction of a candidate for federal office.”
The “candidate” Cohen referred to was not named in court or in the criminal information charging document but one of Cohen’s lawyers, Lanny Davis, later said that Cohen had “testified under oath that Donald Trump directed him to commit a crime.”
The campaign finance violations are associated with Cohen’s role in alleged hush money agreements with two women, Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, who claim to have had affairs with Trump.
Paul Manafort – Trump Campaign Manager
Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign manager, and his business partner Rick Gates, have been indicted by a federal grand jury as a result of Special Counsel Bob Mueller’s Russia probe.
It involves 12 counts, per Peter Carr, a spokesman for the special counsel’s office: conspiracy against the United States, conspiracy to launder money, unregistered agent of a foreign principal, false and misleading Foreign Agent Registration Act statements, false statements, and seven counts of failure to file reports of foreign bank and financial accounts.
Rick Gates – Trump Campaign Adviser
Rick Gates, a former top official in President Donald Trump’s campaign, pleaded guilty Friday afternoon to conspiracy and lying to the FBI, striking a deal to cooperate and provide information to special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s ongoing investigation as it edges closer to the White House.
Michael Flynn – Trump Administration National Security Adviser
Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn pleaded guilty on Friday in federal court to a charge of making false statements to the FBI about his communications with Russia.
Flynn had contacted the Russians at the urging of two top transition officials, according to a court document. Three people familiar with the matter say one of the officials referenced in the document is Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, and two people familiar with the matter say the other is K.T. McFarland, who served as deputy national security adviser from January to May.
Flynn is the first senior White House official to be charged in the special counsel’s investigation into Moscow’s meddling into the 2016 presidential election, and the first to officially agree to cooperate.
George Papadopoulos – Trump Campaign Foreign Policy Adviser
A former Trump campaign adviser struck a cooperation agreement with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, secretly pleading guilty three weeks ago to lying to federal agents about his contacts with Kremlin-connected Russians.
Alex Van der Zwaan – Associate of Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort and Trump Campaign Adviser Rick Gates
Alex Van Der Zwaan, a Dutch lawyer and the only person to serve prison time in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, was deported and arrived back in the Netherlands Tuesday, according to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Van Der Zwaan, the son-in-law of Russian oligarch German Khan, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his work with two of President Trump’s former campaign aides. He served 30 days in a low-security prison in Allenwood, Pennsylvania.
He was released from prison on Monday and handed over to ICE custody, then he was removed from the U.S. He arrived Tuesday in the Netherlands, where he is a citizen, and was handed over to Dutch authorities, ICE said in a statement to USA TODAY.
Konstantin Kilimnik – Associate of Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort and Trump Campaign Adviser Rick Gates
Russian citizen Konstantin Kilimnik – considered Mr Manafort’s right-hand man in Ukraine – is accused of conspiring with Mr Manafort to obstruct justice.
…The new charges against both men – known as a superseding indictment – alleges that they sought to tamper with witnesses ahead of Mr Manafort’s trial next month.
Chris Collins – 1st US Congressman to endorse Donald Trump for President
New York Republican Rep. Chris Collins was indicted on insider trading charges on Wednesday morning, federal prosecutors said. Collins’ charges include using inside information about Australian biotechnology company Innate Immunotherapeutics to make stock trades, CBS News reported.
A grand jury indicted Collins for passing private material to his son Cameron in June 2017, so that Cameron “could use that information to make timely trades in Innate stock and tip others” about a drug the company developed to treat Secondary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis.
Cameron owned more than 2% of Innate stocks, and then passed the information to Stephen Zarsky, his fiancée’s father, prosecutors said, according to NBC News.
Duncan Hunter – 2nd US Congressman to endorse Donald Trump for President
California Republican Rep. Duncan Hunter and his wife have been indicted on charges of diverting campaign money to pay for personal and family expenses.
A 48-page indictment released by the Department of Justice on Tuesday alleges that Hunter and his wife, Margaret, spent more than $250,000 of campaign donors’ money on family expenses like trips, groceries and theater tickets.
The indictment states they fabricated campaign expenses to mask what they were using the money to cover. Dental work, for example, was listed as donations to a charity called “Smiles for Life.”
Ralph Shortey – Trump Campaign Chair for the State of Oklahoma
Ralph Shortey, a former Oklahoma state senator who last year served as Donald Trump’s campaign chair in the state, was meticulous about keeping up his reputation as a pious man, according to several fellow Oklahomans. That reputation, however, has all but disappeared. According to Shortey’s attorney, the former Republican lawmaker will plead guilty to one count of child sex trafficking on Nov. 30.
Shortey, a 35-year-old married father of three, resigned from the state Legislature in March after being charged with several felonies, including engaging in child prostitution, after police found him in a hotel room with a 17-year-old male. Shortey’s attorney, Ed Blau, confirmed that his client will plead guilty to a charge of child sex trafficking in exchange for U.S. prosecutors’ dropping three child pornography charges against him.
Timothy Nolan – Trump Campaign Official for the State of Kentucky
A former Kentucky campaign official for President Donald Trump is due in court on Friday after being charged with human trafficking in the U.S. southern state.
Timothy Nolan, a retired district court judge, was arrested last month and charged with forcing a minor to engage in commercial sex around August 2016.
He is also charged with inducing a minor to engage in sexual activity and giving alcohol to a minor, according to the complaint.
Meanwhile, Donald Trump has been traveling across the country holding fascist rallies where he tells his fawning supporters that the Democrats are the “party of crime”.
Lately at his MAGA rallies, the current President of the United States has been accusing the opposition party of wanting an increase in crime. Here are a few examples:
“If you vote Democrat, that’s what’s going to happen. They want to erase our gains and plunge our country into a nightmare of gridlock, poverty, chaos and, frankly, crime.”
“The Democrats are the party of crime. And that’s what it is, they’re the party of crime.”
“Democrats are the party of crime. How does that sound? They’re the party of crime.”
“The Democrat Party is radical socialism, Venezuela, and open borders. It’s now called, to me — you’ve never heard this before, The Party of Crime. It’s a Party of Crime, it’s what it is.”
This kind of rhetoric, labeling political enemies or political scapegoats as being criminal, is frighteningly fascist, as can be seen by looking at some past examples:
After six issues devoted to ethnic pride, Neues Volk featured an article on the types of the “Criminal Jew”.
In the 1930s, the Nazis used a similar tactic to stir up anger and hatred toward Jews. Professor Richard Weikart of California State University explained that Nazi leaders used different kinds of communication tools to sell the message that “Jews are criminal by disposition,” as a 1943 Nazi directive to the German press put it. “The Jews are not a nation like other nations but bearers of hereditary criminality,” the order said. Germany, in other words, was out of control, and only Nazi anti-Semitic policies could “restore order.”
To spread these ideas, there were books (like the pamphlet pictured above) and films that portrayed Jews as subhuman. “The Eternal Jew,” released in 1940, depicted Jews as wandering cultural parasites, consumed by sex and money.”
“After 1938, the Jew took on this function, becoming a repository for all the negative qualities and tendencies—individualism, criminality, lack of martial feeling—that had long been used to characterize Southern Italians and that had long formed part of foreigners’ stereotypes of Italians as a whole.”
This kind of rhetoric is also not new to Donald Trump, who opened his campaign for President by labeling immigrants as criminals, then spent the entire general election labeling his opponent as a criminal. Trump undoubtedly sees this fascist tactic of labeling political enemies as criminals to be a successful propaganda tactic he can repeat whenever possible. But, in practice, his accusation that Democrats are the “party of crime” is contradicted by the fact that the policies of the Republican party, and Trump himself, have been shown to have a much greater effect on increases in crime than any policy supported by Democrats.