Jan. 6 Hearings Were Aimed at Merrick Garland
Author: Greg Valliere
July 22, 2022
THIS STORY IS FAR FROM OVER, as the spotlight shifts to the next key player: Attorney General Merrick Garland, who seemingly has enough evidence — a mountain of evidence — to indict Donald Trump.
WE HAVEN’T WRITTEN MUCH ABOUT THE HEARINGS because we write about issues that affect the markets, and there has been virtually no impact for investors as the evidence piles up. That could change, as Trump launches another presidential campaign that the markets will have to follow because it’s conceivable that Trump could win the GOP nomination.
YOU UNDERESTIMATE TRUMP at your own peril; he’s a street fighter who mocks opponents with a ferocity that we have never seen before. And his favored Republican in Maryland — a far-right Republican — won that state’s gubernatorial primary this week, a huge blow to the presidential ambitions of Larry Hogan, the moderate GOP governor.
MORE AMERICANS HAVE WATCHED the hearings than we anticipated; a little more than 50% of the public has been paying attention. There are two narratives: one, that Trump encouraged the riot and did nothing to stop it, in a desperate attempt to reverse the election, which he lost. Two, Trump has already won the impeachment trial, and there were no Republicans on the committee who could have cross-examined witnesses.
IT WAS A CONVINCING SHOW, slick and disturbing, and while it probably moved the needle among Americans against Trump, the bigger impact was on mainstream Republicans — especially those in Congress — who have no stomach for Donald Trump. They would prefer another nominee, a conservative like Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
TRUMP KNOWS THIS, which is a reason why he may announce his candidacy by fall. It would give him the publicity he craves, and might deflect attention if Garland
indicts him on charges of conspiracy, inciting a riot, witness tampering, etc.
GARLAND PROBABLY WOULD NOT INDICT until after the Nov. 8 election; anything sooner would be viewed as an attempt to sway the election. Regardless of when he might indict, a bigger issue is that Garland could fuel Trump’s enormous sense of grievance, allowing him to claim an unfair “witch hunt.”
WHAT LOOKED LIKE A FAIRLY EASY CALL on the November election — Republicans taking the House while the Senate stays close to tied — could be scrambled if Trump enters soon and makes this year’s election largely about him. This infuriates Mitch McConnell and most Washington Republicans, who want the election to be about the future and issues like inflation and crime, not about re-litigating the 2020 election.
GARLAND FEARS THAT INDICTING TRUMP would divide the country even more, if that’s possible, but the Attorney General said recently that “no one is above the law.” So indictment will stay on the table, even though voters are more concerned about economic and social issues; abortion has been a far more potent catalyst than either party anticipated.
TRUMP’S CHANCES OF ANOTHER TERM are slim but they aren’t zero. Could an indicted president win re-election? After the events of the past few years, anything is possible.
The views expressed in this blog are provided as a general source of information based on information available as of the date of publication and should not be considered as personal investment advice or an offer or solicitation to buy and/or sell securities. Speculation or stated believes about future events, such as market or economic conditions, company or security performance, or other projections represent the beliefs of the author and do not necessarily represent the view of AGF, its subsidiaries or any of its affiliated companies, funds or investment strategies. Every effort has been made to ensure accuracy in these commentaries at the time of publication; however, accuracy cannot be guaranteed. Market conditions may change and AGF accepts no responsibility for individual investment decisions arising from the use of or reliance on the information contained herein. Any financial projections are based on the opinions of the author and should not be considered as a forecast. The forward looking statements and opinions may be affected by changing economic circumstances and are subject to a number of uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in the forward looking statements. The information contained in this commentary is designed to provide you with general information related to the political and economic environment in the United States. It is not intended to be comprehensive investment advice applicable to the circumstances of the individual.
AGF Investments is a group of wholly owned subsidiaries of AGF Management Limited, a Canadian reporting issuer. The subsidiaries included in AGF Investments are AGF Investments Inc. (AGFI), AGF Investments America Inc. (AGFA), AGF Investments LLC (AGFUS) and AGF International Advisors Company Limited (AGFIA). AGFA and AGFUS are registered advisors in the U.S. AGFI is a registered as a portfolio manager across Canadian securities commissions. AGFIA is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland and registered with the Australian Securities & Investments Commission. The subsidiaries that form AGF Investments manage a variety of mandates comprised of equity, fixed income and balanced assets.
About AGF Management Limited
Founded in 1957, AGF Management Limited (AGF) is an independent and globally diverse asset management firm. AGF brings a disciplined approach to delivering excellence in investment management through its fundamental, quantitative, alternative and high-net-worth businesses focused on providing an exceptional client experience. AGF’s suite of investment solutions extends globally to a wide range of clients, from financial advisors and individual investors to institutional investors including pension plans, corporate plans, sovereign wealth funds and endowments and foundations.
For further information, please visit AGF.com.
©2022 AGF Management Limited. All rights reserved.