* Erik’s Editorial: The Guilty Parties Who Put American Democracy At Risk In The Name Of Donald Trump

US White House upside down (public domain).

I do not fault stupid people for making the stupid decision to elect Donald Trump in 2016.

I do fault smart people for making stupid decisions. These include:

1. Senators who voted to acquit Donald Trump in his no-witnesses-allowed impeachment trial, including primarily Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell:

* Impeachment of Donald Trump (2020-02-05)

* Mitch McConnell (2020-02-05)

2. Members of the GOP who voted to disenfranchise voters in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin – before, during, and AFTER the 2021 storming of the United States Capitol – including Paul Gosar (AZ-04), Ted Cruz (R-TX), Jody Hice (R–GA-10), Mo Brooks (R–AL-05), Scott Perry (R–PA-10), Josh Hawley (R–MO), and Louie Gohmert (R–TX-01).

* 2021 Storming Of The United States Capitol (2021-01-06)

* 2020 United States Presidential Election Electoral College Count (2021-01-06 – 2021-01-07)

3. Donald Trump’s cabinet, who could have invoked the 25th Amendment to remove POTUS at any time:

* Cabinet Of Donald Trump (2017-01-21 – PRESENT)

4. Social media, including especially Facebook and Twitter, for allowing their social networks to be used as platforms for hate speech.

* Donald Trump On Social Media (2017-01-21 – PRESENT)

5. Mainstream media, including especially CNN (on the left) and Fox News (on the right) for not doing their jobs – asking questions until they get answers – and allowing POTUS to lie unchecked.

* Veracity Of Statements By Donald Trump (2017-01-21 – PRESENT)

6. Lawmakers at all levels, for failing to fix bad laws and for failing to enact good laws. Changes that must be made going forward include:

Limiting POTUS power:

  • Executive order power must be limited.
  • All cabinet members (acting/interim/actual) must be confirmed by Senate.
  • Treaties and tariffs must be the role of Congress so that POTUS cannot engage in trade wars.
  • War Powers Act must be updated to limit POTUS power to deploy the military.
  • Special Counsel Act must be updated to make clear that POTUS cannot fire special counsel.

Writing better and new laws:

  • Impeachment Act of 2021, to define how impeachment is conducted, including the requirement to have witnesses.
  • Follow the lead of The Restatements Of The Law project (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Restatements_of_the_Law) and codify major SCOTUS cases, including especially Roe v. Wade.
  • Fix the Census.
  • Fix immigration.
  • Fix SCOTUS processes, such as limiting appointments to 2 per POTUS with the number of SCOTUS justices fixed at the number of Federal Circuits (currently 13).
  • Election reform, including who is qualified to run for POTUS and that tax forms must be disclosed to do so.

Just to name a few.

Stupid people, bad laws, and lies got us into this mess.

Smart people, good laws, and the truth can get us out of this mess.



The Trump White House: Fire and Fury, or Fired and Furious?

A new and provocative book by Michael Wolff, Fire and Fury: Inside Trump’s White House, is due out next week. Chronicling Donald Trump’s first year in the White House, the book’s content and expository style paint a vivid picture of a Trump Administration that is corrupt at worst, and inept and unequipped at best.

Wolff claims to have gathered much of the material in his book as a result of his access to former key figures in the Trump administration, most notably, former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon. Bannon had at one time been considered to be close to the President, but was ultimately pressured to leave his post. So far, Bannon has neither denied nor confirmed the damning commentary Wolff purports Bannon has made about the Trumps and the Administration.

Amid both the indignation (if you’re a Trump supporter) and the fascination (if you’re not a Trump supporter), lingers a question (speaking of former key staffers): Why has the Trump administration seen so many staff departures in such a short time?

The following White House staff have either resigned or been fired during the first year of the Trump presidency:

  • Sally Yates, then acting Attorney General (January 30, 2017)
  • Michael Flynn, National Security Advisor (February 13, 2017)
  • Angella Reid, Chief Usher (May 5, 2017)
  • James Comey, FBI Director (May 9, 2017)
  • Mike Dubke, Communications Director (May 18, 2017)
  • Walter Shaub, Director of Office of Government Ethics (July 6, 2017)
  • Sean Spicer, White House Press Secretary (July 21, 2017)
  • Michael Short, Senior Assistant Press Secretary (July 25, 2017)
  • Reince Priebus, White House Chief of Staff (July 28, 2017)
  • Anthony Scaramucci, Communications Director (July 31, 2017)
  • Steve Bannon, Chief Strategist (August 18, 2017)
  • Sebastian Gorka, Counterterrorism Adviser (August 25, 2017)
  • Tom Price, Health and Human Services Secretary (September 29, 2017)
  • Dina Powell, Deputy National Security Advisor (December 8, 2017)
  • Omarosa Manigault Newman, White House Office of Public Liaison (December 13, 2017)

Some see the short tenure of so many White House staffers as an indicator of dysfunction within the Administration. Others consider it a sign that Trump himself simply made poor or uninformed choices.

Many staunch Trump supporters, such as former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci, who himself lasted in the Administration just 11 days, assert that the relatively large turnover of key staff is all in the day’s work of a tightly run business.

Credible or not, Fire and Fury has ignited many of the topics that are dominating current news and raising new questions about the health of the Trump White House, including speculation about Trump’s fitness for office; proclamations about the integrity of Steve Bannon, among others; more intense questions about collusion between Russia and the Trump family; and observations of infighting among Trump staffers.

It will be nearly impossible to “unsee” what we’ve now seen as a result of Wolff’s book, no matter what we believe about the Trump Administration or those who have surrounded him.

Scaramucci Defends Trump, Bashes Steve Bannon (Full Interview) | CNN [2017-01-04]

Steve Bannon Goes Rogue on the Trump White House  |  Fox News [2018-01-03]

Below is Sarah Sanders’ most recent White House press briefing, where she addresses questions related to content in Fire and Fury: Inside Trump’s White House.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders White House Press Briefing | Right Side Broadcasting Network [2017-01-03]