The administration of Donald Trump is still struggling to get a foothold on support from members of Congress. His own Republican Party has been in such a state of disarray that they have failed to pass a single major plank of his platform. ObamaCare hasn’t been repealed. Taxes have not been cut for his wealthy pals. Federal courts keep striking down his Muslim ban. And there is no Mexican-paid wall.
So perhaps in a move of desperation Trump dispatched his Apprentice flunky, Omarosa Manigault, to invite members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) to the White House. The purpose was ostensibly to discuss issues that were raised in a prior get together. The only problem is that since the first meeting last March, things have only gotten worse. The letter sent by the CBC’s chairman, Cedric Richmond, provided explicit reasons for declining the invitation. For instance:
“Through an objective assessment, we have seen no evidence that your Administration acted on our calls for action, and we have in fact witnessed steps that will affirmatively hurt Black communities. While we agreed to explore possible future discussions when we first met, it has become abundantly clear that a conversation with the entire CBC would not be entirely productive given the actions taken by your administration since our first meeting. […] In fact, based on the actions taken by you and your Administration since that meeting, it appears that our concerns, and your stated receptiveness to them, fell on deaf ears.”
The letter enumerated several policy areas where the Trump administration fell short. They included his proposal to cut Pell Grants by four billion dollars; eliminating the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program; and re-escalating the failed war on drugs that “will continue to wreck the Black community and exacerbate our nation’s shameful scourge of mass incarceration.”
Also raised was Trump’s rollback of consent decrees and other methods of protecting the civil rights of all Americans. The administration’s record on education was a major point of contention. And the efforts to dismantle the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare) were described as a dealing a “painful blow” by “mean-spirited legislation” that would strip millions of people of their health care.
The CBC’s letter went on to list several of their attempts to engage the administration to pursue issues of common interest. But they were all ignored. The letter closed saying:
“Given the lack of response to any of the many concerns we have raised with you and your Administration, we decline your invitation for all 49 members of the Congressional Black Caucus to meet with you. The CBC, and the millions of people we represent, have a lot to lose under your Administration. I fail to see how a social gathering would benefit the policies we advocate for.”
This is a stinging rebuke to Trump and his transparent attempt to manipulate a key congressional constituency. They were not about to be taken advantage of for a photo-op designed to benefit the floundering White House. Whatever made the President think that the Caucus would would be so naive as to fall for this PR stunt is a mystery. And it’s also an insult. Unfortunately, it’s Trump who will consider himself the victim and will learn nothing from the message the CBC sent. SAD!
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.