I Do Believe That The Republicans Think They Have Successfully Pulled Off A Coup With A Trump Presidency
Based on the today’s Senate subcommittee testimonies of former attorney general Sally Q. Yates and former director of national intelligence James Clapper, I couldn’t help but notice the pithy exchanges by Senators John Cornyn (R) Texas, Ted Cruz (R) Texas, and John Neely Kennedy (R) Louisiana on the acting attorney general’s refusal to implement an executive order to basically ban Muslim immigration to the United States.
By the way the acting Attorney General was not made aware of the executive order when President Trump issued the travel ban. She heard about it in the media first. There was no consult or not even a “heads up”. Tyrannical right?!?
First was Senator Cornyn who seemed admonishing, remarking that he found it “enormously disappointing that you somehow vetoed the decision of the Office of Legal Counsel with regard to the lawfulness of the president’s order and decided instead that you would counter…the executive order of the president of the United States because you happen to disagree with it as a policy matter.” Cornyn goes on to say “ I just have to say that”.
Ms. Yates quickly shut this fool down as he was trying to be rather dismissive of her and due to her political firing. Her response was quick and appropriate, and she quickly dispatched the constitutionality of the travel ban, and how it was clearly in doing her job. She stated, “I appreciate that, Senator, and let me make one thing clear. It is not purely as a policy matter. In fact, I’ll remember my confirmation hearing. In an exchange that I had with you and others of your colleagues where you specifically asked me in that hearing that if the president asked me to do something that was unlawful or unconstitutional and one of your colleagues said or even just that would reflect poorly on the Department of Justice, would I say no? And I looked at this, I made a determination that I believed that it was unlawful. I also thought that it was inconsistent with principles of the Department of Justice and I said no. And that’s what I promised you I would do and that’s what I did.”
The former AG summarily repeated this again with the other Senators who tried to take swipes at her subsequent political firing over the refusal to implement such an egregious and unlawful ban.
Next up to bat was Senator Cruz who pointedly asked, rather patriarch-ly, if she was familiar with 8 USC Section 1182 to which very few would recite off the top of their head. Cruz stated that it was “the binding statutory authority for the executive order that you refused to implement, and that led to your termination. So it — it certainly is a relevant and not a terribly obscure statute.”
Again Yates, promptly set the Harvard Law School alum straight by clearly reiterating that “..in this particular instance, particularly where we were talking about a fundamental issue of religious freedom — not the interpretation of some arcane statute, but religious freedom…” that led to her decision of how unlawful that executive order is and how the DOJ couldn’t possible stand behind the unlawfulness of that order.
Next up Senator Kennedy of Louisiana, who seemed bent on making an ass of himself in the process when Mr. Clapper quizzically and mockingly responded to his question regarding classified and unclassified dissemination of information. Kennedy was easily more agitated than the other senators and came after Yates first, “You declined to support — to defend President Trump’s executive order because you thought it was unconstitutional. Is that correct?”, after Yates responded with “That’s correct. Yes.” he badgered on, “OK. Suppose instead of an executive order, this had been an act of Congress. Would you have refused to defend it?”
Yates responded “If it were the same act, yes. And in fact, the Department of Justice has done that in the past. For example, with DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act, when the Department of Justice refused to defend DOMA.
Well done Ms. Yates. Well done.
Of course this would not have been complete without Trump tweeting in.
I can only assume that White House Counsel Don McGahn who was made aware by AG Yates of possible improprieties with Trump’s circle operates in the best interest of his client and not necessarily the United States as the title suggests. This is why McGahn questioned the value of morals when it comes to the law or in this case the DOJ— when AG Yates approached him on the occasion that General Flynn had lied to Vice President Pence. Certain lawyers are skillful that way especially when serving at the interest of a perceived tyrant. They seek to codify the laws to fit the style of governance and agenda of their boss. We tend to misconstrue this as lawyers being lawyers but this I assure you is different.
Oh, but then there is this tweet also.
This is the presidential response you get when you elect an emotionally immature and terribly amateurish person to the highest office. Always blaming someone else for something gone wrong under his purview and always deflecting away improprieties that are absolutely consequential and are of major concern to the republic.
Actually many news agencies covered this with the kind of vigor you would expect but the president quite possibly never read them. It has been in the news since April 27. The Pentagon has been investigating this but I guess the president has not made himself entirely available to White House briefings as a newbie should. But of course it is easier to blame the last guy in office — even though he warned you not to hire this guy — and not your lack of judgment because Michael Flynn seemed all to loyal during his rallying support during Trump’s campaign.
Sean Spicer’s other defense is that Mr. Obama “wasn’t exactly a fan of General Flynn’s”. I guess so since he fired him in 2014. The White House press secretary goes on to say “If President Obama was truly concerned about General Flynn, why didn’t they suspend his security clearance, which they approved just months earlier?”
Spicer seems to have more questions for the media than answers. Questions about the very administration he intimately works for.
He seems to capture the essence and behaviors of a henchman who tirelessly defends a tyrant by being characteristically belligerent.
This is what happens when you put a political win above national security.
This is what happens when self-centered reliance on pledging allegiance to all things Trump — as General Flynn has done during the Trump campaign — trumps everything.
This is when narcissism rather than judicious assessment obfuscates a clear agenda and affects the ability to serve in the best interest of the United States and fails to register cognitively.
This is where self-delusion resides and becomes an impediment to competence.
This is what happens I guess under a republican coup.
More emphatically this is what happens when we fail to appreciate what a true democracy entails.