Donald Trump is on the hunt after reports of a ‘resistance’ in his ranks – Donald Trump’s America


Updated

September 07, 2018 12:26:55

The Summer break is over, school’s back, and the caps lock is on.

The President, who doesn’t cope well with rats in the ranks, is backed into a corner like a caged bear, isolated, paranoid and angry, and now on the hunt.

WHO WAS IT?

He is perfectly described as “volcanic” in this piece from the Washington Post after an anonymous “senior official” in his administration penned an extraordinary op-ed for the New York Times, entitled I am Part of the Resistance inside the Trump Administration.

Wow. The piece includes such pearlers as:

“The root of the problem is the president’s amorality. Anyone who works with him knows he is not moored to any discernible first principles that guide his decision-making.”

And:

“Given the instability many witnessed, there were early whispers within the Cabinet of invoking the 25th Amendment, which would start a complex process for removing the president. But no-one wanted to precipitate a constitutional crisis. So we will do what we can to steer the administration in the right direction until — one way or another — it’s over.”

Hmm.

Has anyone seen that recent episode of Madam Secretary when Elizabeth and Russell gather the Cabinet to invoke the 25th to remove the President (temporarily) because he’s making irrational decisions?

Way to go writers!

But this is a reality show, and there is no script.

The crux of the piece, that there are members of the administration keeping the president on track, is no surprise.

All presidents have advisers and trusted confidants who help guide and inform their decision-making. But this is different, and while some Trump critics have applauded the unknown writer, others say that undermining and manipulating a sitting, elected president is totally inappropriate.

And then there’s the Woodward book …

The op-ed follows similar themes to those outlined in excerpts from a new book by Watergate investigative journalist Bob Woodward, who has recorded hours of interviews with current and former administration officials.

Fear: Trump in the White House, which is out next week, says that staff have physically withheld documents from the president to prevent him from signing off on things that would damage America — withdrawing from a trade agreement from South Korea for example, and NAFTA.

Woodward writes:

“The reality was that the United States in 2017 was tethered to the words and actions of an emotionally overwrought, mercurial and unpredictable leader. Members of his staff had joined to purposefully block some of what they believed were the president’s most dangerous impulses. It was a nervous breakdown of the executive power of the most powerful country in the world.”

Former chief of staff Reince Priebus, economic adviser Gary Cohn, and staff secretary Rob Porter, all now among the casualties of the administration, are all sources.

But there are others, and Woodward, a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner who is known for his deep, dry, fact-based reporting, has tapes.

But the White House says it’s all fiction

The White House, predictably, has dismissed the whole thing as fiction, although the president’s deep insecurity has been pricked.

Here’s the statement from chief of staff John Kelly, who is alleged to have called the president an “idiot”:

And Secretary of Defense James Mattis, who is said to have described him as like a “5th or 6th-grader”:

Regarding the offending op-ed, Sarah Sanders said:

So that will be the end of that then.

Not.

So is it treason?

The general consensus is, no.

“That’s easy: no. It could be considered an act of disloyalty, which is not a crime, but it’s definitely not treasonous,” NBC’s justice correspondent Pete Williams said.

“Treason, the only crime defined in the constitution, consists of levying war against the United States or ‘adhering to’ an enemy, giving ‘aid and comfort’.

“The constitution does not specify a penalty, but a federal law does — anything from five years in prison to death.

“‘Enemy’ means a country or an entity that has declared war or is in a state of open war against the US. ‘Aid and comfort’ must be something material, not words of encouragement.

“The op-ed article fails both those tests. It gives nothing material, and it is not in aid of an enemy.”

Now the question is: whodunit?

The big names have all denied.

Be alert but not alarmed.

The other big show in town this week?

There were confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Protesters disrupted most of the first day (some dressed as if in The Handmaid’s Tale to protest his conservative stance on abortion).

His pro-gun views also got attention after a video of him appearing to blow off a handshake from the parent of a Parkland shooting victim went viral.

That said, he will probably be confirmed before the mid-terms, tipping the balance of the court further to the conservative, and upping Mr Trump’s backing from those who see Supreme Court appointments as the be-all and end-all.

They can and do, after all, shape US policy for generations.

True to his uncoached style, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey read his opening statement from his own Twitter account during social media committee hearings on Capitol Hill this week:

Speaking of The Hill, there was this weird moment between Senator Marco Rubio and Info Wars’s Alex Jones.

People are burning their Nike shoes

Nike managed to get tens of millions of dollars’ worth of free ads and a boycott happening in the same week after it launched its new ad campaign featuring NFL rebel Colin Kaepernick (remember how the kneeling for the anthem started?)

It fast became political.

Some people are burning their Nike shoes.

Aussie! Aussie! Aussie!

Speaking of sport, the Brissie battler John Millman won hearts at the US Open this week.

Take a look at our piece for 7.30 with John, who did us proud.

Topics:

government-and-politics,

federal-government,

world-politics,

donald-trump,

united-states

First posted

September 07, 2018 10:58:18





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