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Whose career would you like him to destroy?

Because that’s the kind of casual offer Dear Leader makes.

Sen. Konni Burton

President Donald Trump invited a wave of speculation Tuesday when he volunteered to “destroy” the career of a unnamed Texas state senator in response to a state sheriff’s complaint about the lawmaker.

Trump’s remark came during a meeting with sheriffs at the White House that included Rockwall County’s Harold Eavenson. When Trump asked the group for input on how to improve law enforcement, Eavenson spoke up.

“Asset forfeiture,” Eavenson replied. “We’ve got a state senator in Texas that’s talking about introducing legislation to require conviction before we can receive that forfeiture money and I told him that the cartel would build a monument to him in Mexico if he could get that legislation passed.”

“Who’s the state senator?” Trump asked, getting no answer from a demurring Eavenson. “Want to give his name? We’ll destroy his career.”

Hours after the exchange, it was still unclear to whom Eavenson, a Republican, was referring. He was not immediately available for comment.

The story notes that Sens. Konni Burton and Juan Hinojosa have both filed bills to do what Sheriff Eavenson is complaining about. It makes more sense for a Republican like Eavenson to whine about a Democratic Senator, but 1) I seriously doubt Chuy Hinojosa is the least bit intimidated, and 2) he’s in a safe-D district, and there’s not enough frothing Trumpies there to give him a primary challenge. That leaves fellow Republican Konni Burton, who’s in the Ted Cruz wing of the party and is generally an ally of Trump buddy Dan Patrick, not that any of that would help her. I have no idea to what extent Burton did or didn’t support Trump in the election, but she does disagree with him on trade, so if the seething hordes want to go after her, they’ve got an angle for it. Two angles now, I suppose.

One more thing, from Kevin Drum, who figures Burton is the target here:

My guess is that he has no idea what civil asset forfeiture is and has no real opinion about it. If, say, Trump had been in a meeting with a few senators, and Bob Goodlatte had remarked that “police can seize your money even if you weren’t convicted of a crime,” Trump probably would have reflexively answered, “Can you believe that?” Instead, a sheriff said it was a bad thing related to Mexicans, so Trump automatically agreed with him. That means it’s now official Trump administration policy.

Sad. But then again, Jeff Sessions is a huge fan of civil asset forfeiture and all the corrupt incentives it creates, so he probably would have gotten Trump on board one way or another. It’s yet another big win for the working class.

Indeed. Others who also landed on Burton and Hinojosa as the likely targets include Think Progress, Grits for Breakfast (who is a big supporter of the Burton bill), and Juanita. The Chron, Politico, Wonkblog, and The Hill have more.

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8 Comments

  1. Harold Green says:

    I don’t believe it’s Hinojosa because a Democrats opposing you wouldn’t even be an minor problem in the Republican Senate

  2. PDiddie says:

    I feel confident — as does the Statesman — that Sheriff Eavenson was referring not to Burton or Hinojosa but to his own state senator, Bob Hall.

  3. Bill Daniels says:

    Kuff,

    Even though I am a Trump supporter, I agree with you 100% on this. Your entire assessment is exactly correct. Trump really botched this one, and I’m embarrassed for him. I support law and order, but robbing people who have been convicted of no crime isn’t law and order…..it’s something else.

  4. Flypusher says:

    This is the type of Bill that needs passing (unlike HB6) and I’ll be letting my reps know about my opinion.

    If this doesn’t pass I hope some of these knee-jerk frothing Trumpkin bullies get to experience first hand a bit of this legalized government theft.

    I’m perplexed as to why one of these cases hasn’t made it to SCOTUS, as it’s a glaringly obvious 4th Amendment violation. I’m sure the ACLU is chomping at the bit to litigate one of these. One explanation I’ve heard is that if an innocent victim puts up enough of a fight, the authorities will relent in order to avoid a higher court challenge that could kill the practice. Anyone in the know??

  5. Flypusher says:

    SB6, I mean.

  6. Kris Overstreet says:

    I can’t agree with your analysis. One of Trump’s core campaign planks was that he would give police more power to “crack down” and establish “law and order.” I believe that Trump knows perfectly well what asset forfeiture is- and even if he doesn’t, he’ll happily go along with anything that cops tell him they need to be able to do to enforce order.

    For me, Trump standing behind asset forfeiture is a lot more terrifying than Trump promising to kill someone’s political career.

  7. brad m says:

    Trump does not know what many things are and what he is doing in many areas.

    “crack down”…”law and order”….this is laughable.

    This is like when local elections roll around and a nut job right-winger candidate for dog catcher comes knocking on my door saying he’ll protect the 2nd amendment with no regulations of any kind and he’ll support pro-choice efforts for life at first cell division.

  8. robert says:

    asset forfeiture is a scary thing….it happened to me a LONG time ago. If you think it can’t happen to you, think again.

    They are charging your cash, house, boat, plane, whatever with a crime and take it away. They don’t charge you with a crime, and your “thing/stuff” that got taken away has no rights.

    Now to CLAIM your stuff to get back, you have only 30 days to post a bond of 10% of the value of the stuff taken or lose ANY claim to it in the future.

    Then pay a Lawyer to try and get it back….so, you’ve committed no crime and are out thousands upon thousands of dollars…..mostly because whatever law enforcement agency took your stuff gets to keep the proceeds into their operating fund.

    Was originally set up as part of the RICO act to put drug dealers out of business, a good intention. However, greed within law enforcement has resulted in too many innocent people being victims, smh