What Trump has ‘had to endure is unprecedented,’ Clarke says
By DAVID SKOLNICK
David A. Clarke Jr., a vocal supporter of Donald Trump and the keynote speaker at the Mahoning County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day dinner, said the president has had to fight against those trying to “denormalize” him.
Clarke, the former sheriff of Milwaukee County in Wisconsin from 2002 to 2017, told The Vindicator Tuesday that Trump has faced “an orchestrated effort – mainly by the deep state, but also by the left, the Democratic Party – to delegitimize his presidency. It’s one thing to have an opposing viewpoint in politics. We like that. We like counterviews, the back-and-forth of discourse. That’s all good stuff in American politics.”
But Clarke said what Trump has “had to endure is unprecedented. No president in the history of this country has had this sort of resistance to try to denormalize him, try to delegitimize his presidency.”
Clarke – who ran for office as a Democrat but is a self-proclaimed conservative – dismissed the redacted April 18 Mueller report as a “witch hunt.”
The report concluded there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election. On the topic of obstruction of justice, special counsel Robert Mueller wrote: “While this report does not conclude that the president committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”
Clarke said: “Bob Mueller and others knew going in there was no Russian collusion, but this is the kind of stuff that goes in the political environment now. I don’t worry about that. I don’t say, ‘We all need to get along.’ That’s all nonsense. This is good stuff. It’s one of the things I believe that makes this country great – the fact that we can have this sort of discourse back and forth and contentiousness and still survive as a republic.”
Clarke said he didn’t read the Mueller report.
“I didn’t need to read the Mueller report,” he said. “I knew going in there was no Russian collusion. The Mueller report was all theater. It’s what goes on in Washington, D.C. If you look at how they performed that thing, there were 18 or 19 lawyers, all or most of them either contributed or voted for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election. As far as I was concerned as a law enforcement officer it had no credibility, no integrity.”
Robert Mueller, who led the investigation, is a registered Republican. But various media reports have determined that five of the 17 attorneys investigating the matter donated money to Clinton, Trump’s Democratic opponent, and most of them are registered Democrats. However, who they voted for in the 2016 presidential election hasn’t been disclosed.
Clarke added the Mueller report “was designed to try to bring this president down. Why would I read that garbage?’
Clarke was the keynote speaker at Tuesday’s Lincoln Day dinner at the Maronite Banquet Center. About 550 people attended the event.
Mahoning Republican Chairman Thomas McCabe said it was the best attended Lincoln Day dinner in the party’s history and was told by state GOP officials that it was the largest such dinner in Ohio.