Trump Accuses Kerry of Violating Logan Act with Iran Talks — Here Are a Few Issues With That

Carlos Barria/Reuters

President Donald Trump claimed former Secretary of State John Kerry “should be prosecuted” for his contacts with Iran — but the assertion raises a few problems.

While speaking with reporters on Thursday, Trump accused Kerry of committing a “violation of the Logan Act,” which is a law that prohibits the representation of U.S. interests as a private citizen.

“John Kerry speaks to them a lot, and John Kerry tells them not to call,” Trump claimed of Kerry’s communication with Iran. “That’s a violation of the Logan Act, and frankly, he should be prosecuted on that.”

The president then added that he would like to proceed with prosecuting Kerry, but says he can’t because “people don’t want to do anything,” because “only the Democrats do that kind of stuff.”

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“John Kerry violated the Logan Act. He’s talking to Iran and has been,” he sharply added.

But there are a few issues here.

First off, Trump’s claim that “people” don’t like the idea of prosecuting Kerry appears to insinuate he has discussed the topic of potentially investigating another one of his adversaries, something that Attorney General William Barr has not approached with much transparency when confronted on the matter, as IJR Blue noted.

Trump’s apparent 180 on the Logan Act is also worth noting, as he struck a completely different tone when commenting on former advisor Michael Flynn’s discussions of sanctions with Russia when he was still a private citizen ahead of Trump’s inauguration.

Mike Segar/Reuters

“It certainly would have been okay with me if he did it,” Trump previously said of the situation. “I would have directed him to do it if I thought he wasn’t doing it.”

Finally, there is little basis for Trump’s claims that Kerry broke the law, as the former Secretary of State’s spokesperson explained while rebuking the president soon after his comments.

“Everything President Trump said today is simply wrong, end of story. He’s wrong about the facts, wrong about the law and sadly he’s been wrong about how to use diplomacy to keep America safe,”  the spokesperson told CNN.

“Secretary Kerry helped negotiate a nuclear agreement that helped to solve an intractable problem. The world supported it then, supports it now. We’d hope the president would focus on solving foreign policy problems for America rather than attacking his predecessors for theater,” she added.

What do you think?

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I wonder if Kerry negotiates with the same fake British accent he used when he came back from Vietnam?

Darryll Green

After negotiating a horrific deal with Iran Kerry should admit once more that he has no love for this country.
I long for the days when politicians on both sides had the American people’s best interests as the number one priority, not this partisan mess we are all in.

Lee Kirkland

First of all, General Flynn was an incoming Cabinet Member. It wasn’t wrong at all to start a working relationship with other nations with whom he would be working. Kerry, on the other hand, was not in an official position anymore, nor was he going to be. He was not pushing the current administrations policies, but trying to discredit them. That is a big difference.

Phyllis Softa

Louie, it’s been over 2 years since Trump became POTUS. If we have learned NOTHING else from it, we have learned that Trump has 0-1 standard for himself & his administration—and a completely other standard for ANYONE that is not his lapdog. Today’s press conference was not quite as wacky as Helsinki, but it was right up there with the FOX & Friends interview of Oct 11, 2018. Trump saying something wacky just means it is one more day we can cross off until this nightmare ends.

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