WASHINGTON. Does anyone today remember Admiral John Poindexter? He was President Ronald Reagan’s National Security Advisor, a man who was convicted in 1990 of lying to Congress and obstructing that body’s investigation into the Iran/Contra affair. That matter involved the Reagan administration’s secret Central American operation that aimed to overthrow Nicaragua’s corrupt, revolutionary socialist Sandinista government.
Subsequently, this operation was cited as a direct violation of the Boland Amendment. That resolution, passed by a Democrat-controlled Congress was designed, if the truth be told, to protect the Central American dictatorship from US intervention.
Clearly, the Democratic Party’s love of socialist dictatorships actually predates the congressional careers of Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez by decades.
Lying to Congress: A selective weapon
Fortunately for the accused, the D.C. Appellate Court later overturned the Iran/Contra convictions of Admiral Poindexter and US Marine Col. Oliver North. Interestingly, the court ruled that the law proscribing the telling of untruths to Washington’s lawmakers — lying to Congress — was “unconstitutionally vague.”
According to the United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit:
“A penal statute must define the criminal offence with sufficient definiteness that ordinary people can understand what conduct it prohibits, and do so in a manner that does not invite arbitrary and discriminatory enforcement by which policemen, prosecutors, and juries… pursue their personal predilections.”
Those who skate by
More recently, President Trump’s former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, was very publicly convicted of lying to Congress. But Christine Blasey Ford, whose accusation that Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her in high school, continues to walk free.
This despite sworn denials submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee by those she claimed had “witnessed” the so-called assault. In short, there is little doubt she lied to Congress. Yet there remains not even the faintest hint today that she will be tried, much less convicted, of lying to Congress. Apparently, trying individuals for lying to Congress is a very selective and very partisan decision.
A select few
Consequently, the failure of the government to prosecute professor Ford for the high crime of uttering falsehoods to the largest liar’s club on the planet, proved beyond a reasonable doubt the “arbitrary” and “personal predilections” of Washington’s dissembling lawmakers.
So, you ask, “How many individuals have been convicted of lying to Congress?”
Five. Yeah, five.
Among them, Roger Clemens – Cy Young Award winner – for telling Congress he never used performance-enhancing drugs during his baseball career of nearly a quarter-century. Obviously, Clemens’ actions clearly endangered the Republic.
On reflection, is it reasonable for us to believe the following proposition. Namely, that in the long, sordid history of the US Congress, only five individuals ever attempted to deceive that legislative body? Further, is it reasonable to believe that convicting a person for lying to Congress isn’t the product of selective prosecution?
Anyone who answers in the affirmative is, well, lying.
Top Image: Attorney Michael Cohen testifies before Congress. C-SPAN screen capture.