Email #39, Subject: Russian blackmail?

President-elect Trump initially and repeatedly denied multiple intelligence reports that unanimously reported Russian interference in the election. Now the President-elect appears to be acknowledging the reports as true. But new allegations claim that he was always aware because Russia contacted him directly with damaging information they had collected about him. Again, the President-elect is denying this. If it were true then he was not merely manipulated indirectly, but was blackmailed into what could be prosecuted as treason. I have no idea if these new allegations are true. As Chair of the House Judiciary Committee, the committee in charge of Presidential impeachment, you too must be especially concerned. What steps are you taking to investigate these claims? There is no greater issue before the nation right now than the legitimacy of the next Commander-in-Chief. Should the Republican-controlled Congress choose not to investigate, the damage to the party will be immense. Having already attempted and publicly failed to move the Office of Congressional Ethics under Republican control, you have created the appearance that Republicans are unwilling and so unable to police their own party.  Even if the allegations are false, you will have deepened the impression of endemic corruption by ignoring them. Should these allegations be proven true but without a Republican-led effort to investigate them, you will be unable to distance yourself from the fallout. Please act responsibly and fulfill your duties to your office.

Chris Gavaler

Author: Chris Gavaler

Chris Gavaler is an associate professor at W&L University, comics editor of Shenandoah, and series editor of Bloomsbury Critical Guides in Comics Studies. He has published two novels: School for Tricksters (SMU 2011) and Pretend I’m Not Here (HarperCollins 2002); and six books of scholarship: On the Origin of Superheroes (Iowa 2015), Superhero Comics (Bloomsbury 2017), Superhero Thought Experiments (with Nathaniel Goldberg, Iowa 2019), Revising Fiction, Fact, and Faith (with Nathaniel Goldberg, Routledge 2020), Creating Comics (with Leigh Ann Beavers, Bloomsbury 2021), and The Comics Form (Bloomsbury forthcoming). His visual work appears in Ilanot Review, North American Review, Aquifer, and other journals.

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