|The part everyone is missing about the Paul Gosar January 6th bombshell|
Bill Palmer | 7:00 pm EDT October 26, 2021 Palmer Report
This past weekend’s Rolling Stone expose identified seven House Republicans who allegedly coordinated in advance with January 6th Capitol attackers, either directly or through their staffs. If the reporting is accurate, then all seven are in trouble – but Paul Gosar is in the most trouble of all. Plenty of people picked up on why, but most people missed the true seriousness of the matter.
Numerous social media posts are asserting that Paul Gosar offered the Capitol attackers pardons if they got into legal trouble for the attack. But the Rolling Stone article actually says that Gosar “dangled the possibility of a ‘blanket pardon’ in an unrelated ongoing investigation to encourage them to plan the protests.” This is much worse.
It’s one thing to encourage someone to do something reckless or illegal, and promise to get them off the hook if they get into trouble for it. That’s tantamount to bribery; it gives the other person the option of not doing it.
But this reporting says that Gosar offered them pardons for their prior crimes that they were being criminally investigated for at the time. In other words, he essentially told them they had to carry out January 6th or else they’d go to prison for their prior crimes. This means he didn’t really give them the option of not participating, which makes it something closer to blackmail.
Instead of taking illegal steps to encourage these henchmen to carry out the January 6th plot, Paul Gosar took illegal steps to force these henchmen to carry out a January 6th plot that they might not have even been inclined to otherwise carry out. This significantly shifts the criminal culpability for the Capitol attack from the January 6th organizers, to Gosar himself. And of course if Gosar hatched this pardon blackmail plot with Trump or anyone from the Trump White House, that culpability applies to them as well.
So now we wait for what we always have to wait for in any criminal investigation of this type: whether the cooperating witnesses have enough evidence to 1) convince the general public that Gosar took criminal steps to incite the Capitol attack, and 2) convince a trial jury to convict Gosar for his role in the Capitol attack. The former will determine how this plays out in the court of public opinion and thus impacts the midterms. The latter will determine whether the DOJ is able to ultimately indict Gosar.