A friend of mine made an important point in a Facebook post, and I have some thoughts to share about it. I’d be interested in hearing what other people think. (Email, FB messages or Twitter DMs all work.)
Here’s what he said:
When somebody DOESN’T do something, there generally isn’t a trail of evidence left behind. Evidence is left behind when someone actually IS guilty.
For example, I would like to point out that there is no evidence that proves YOU are not guilty of collusion! That’s right, you all are in the same boat as Trump right now so start explaining.
Politician or not, nobody in America should have to explain why there is no evidence that they didn’t do something when there is no evidence that they did.
Here’s what I said:
I agree trying to prove innocence is unfair, but when faced with evidence that can point toward guilt, it’s fair for people to expect an explanation. Having an alibi can be evidence of innocence; it’s just one way of explaining how other evidence that could suggest guilt actually doesn’t.
When it comes to Trump/Russia, I’d point out that there’s a lot that required an explanation. Instead of insisting the President explain himself, a lot of people are treating troublesome details about his campaign like those didn’t require any explanation from the President. So a lot of people aren’t even considering the explanations the President actually already gave.
The President himself put explanation of things that demand it in writing, for instance, regarding the findings in the screenshot of p. 136 in Part I of the Mueller Report.
The amount of trust people ought to put in the President’s explanations ought to be in the eye of the beholder, but a lot of people have decided what they think without reading both what Mueller asked the President and what the President said in response. I don’t blame anyone for not reading through it, because it takes a lot of effort to wade through it all.
If you’re interested, here’s the link I used for reading through that whole Trump-Mueller back-and-forth.