21 October 2019

Thugs in Pinstripes

The Atlantic published an excellent essay on Saturday (link here) written by a law professor about how Donald Trump's attorney general and White House counsel have both thoroughly corrupted their function.

Government lawyers are supposed to represent the United States, not serve as personal attorneys to the President, but that's what's increasingly happening with this administration.

The author includes an excellent example of how the Justice Department recently tried to block release of the intelligence community whistleblower report to Congress, notwithstanding federal law requires that to happen. This was being done to protect Trump, not further the interests of the United States.

The Department issued a memo to justify their defiance of the law, a memo that was classified as top secret. The article's author doesn't mention how that in itself was another violation, a corruption of the secrecy process to hide a memo justifying obstruction of justice and violation of the law.

The number-one culprit here is Attorney General William Barr, who believes a President is above the law, an idea peddled by advocates of the so-called unitary executive theory. He even wrote a detailed legal memo justifying that position and sent it to the White House in an apparent attempt to float his own name as a candidate should the attorney general position become vacant. It soon did and his memo worked.

Arguably, Barr should be impeached and removed from office along with Trump himself. While the latter could possibly happen, I don't think Barr has to worry. This is the second time he's been attorney general (the first time was when the elder Bush was in office). He's tight with the Republican establishment, unlike Trump.

If there's any silver lining here, it's that the Trump administration was so incompetent that it took more than two years to name Barr to the attorney general slot. He's the perfect man for the job if you're a deeply corrupt President like Trump, but it took Trump and his people two years to realize the guy even existed.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Speak up!