On Tuesday night Donald Trump delivered his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress. It was delayed for a week by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi due to the Trump Shutdown of the government. After capitulating to Pelosi, Trump took to the podium to present what the White House characterized as a message of unity. Which is a pretty audacious stance coming from the most divisive figure on political landscape bar none.
Trump’s allegedly unifying message contained perhaps the most brazen threat ever to be uttered in the House chambers. He warned Democrats that any efforts to investigate his criminal activities could result in an economic decline or maybe even war. He said that “the only thing that can stop” what he baselessly called an “economic miracle” are “foolish wars, politics, or ridiculous partisan investigations.” That was not received well by House Democrats, and especially Speaker Pelosi who responded by admonishing Trump that “The president should not bring threats to the floor of the House.” They all insisted that they would carry out their constitutional duties as a separate, co-equal branch of government.
Undeterred by reason, diplomacy, or maturity, Trump followed up his threat with a more elaborate assault on those he regards as his persecutors. Chief among them is the new chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff (who Trump once called “Adam Schitt” in a display of petulance that would embarrass a seven year old).
Rep. Schiff is keeping his promise to hold the President – and any other public official – accountable for any breaches of the law. One of his first acts was to have the Committee vote to provide transcripts of hearings that were held under the previous chairman (Republican Devin Nunes) forwarded to special counsel Robert Mueller. That’s the sort of accountability that frightens Trump and triggers angry outbursts like the one he unleashed Wednesday morning. He began by falsely stating that Schiff had “no basis” to investigate him. And he continued in a more flagrantly personal vein (video below):
“He’s just a political hack who’s trying to build a name for himself. And I think that’s fine because that’s what they do. But there would be no reason to do that. No other politician has to go through that. It’s called presidential harassment. And it’s unfortunate, and it really does hurt our country.”
So Trump thinks that he’s the only politician who has even been investigated by a congressional committee? Was he in a coma for the dozens of hearings held about Hillary Clinton’s emails, Benghazi, Uranium One, James Comey, the Steele dossier, etc.? The difference between those hearings and the ones that will probe Trump is that the GOP hacks (including former representatives Jason Chaffetz and Trey Gowdy, both of whom now work for Fox News) persecuting Clinton never found a shred of evidence of unlawful activity, but Mueller and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York have both obtained dozens of indictments and guilty pleas.
That should satisfy Trump’s concern about having a basis. What’s more, Trump’s complaint that these investigations would “hurt our country” are bass ackwards. This is precisely what the nation needs to heal and to progress beyond the illegality committed by Trump and Company. Foiling criminal villains helps the country, it doesn’t hurt it.
Trump’s attacks are a pathetic attempt to intimidate Congress from doing its job. They are also intended to continue the process of brainwashing his Deplorables and keeping their fear and anger at a boiling point. But such attacks won’t having any impact on those who are legitimately acting in concert with law enforcement to insure that our government is being run by honest and patriotic individuals, and not weak or compromised puppets of foreign regimes like Russia, or self-interested corporations and billionaires. Which is why Schiff and his House colleagues (Elijah Cummings, Jerrold Nadler, Maxine Waters, etc.) Are doing the right thing and should be commended for their determination and service to the law.
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.