Sep 12, 2018

Crisis in Donald Trump's presidency extends across the nation and beyond

Crisis in Donald Trump's presidency extends across the nation and beyond

Diana Washington Valdez/The Digie Zone 

Commentary

Donald Trump
The New York Times Sept. 5 anonymous opinion essay by a "senior official" within President Donald Trump's administration is extraordinary and unprecedented. 

NYT Anonymous essay

It's like an SOS call trying to explain the Trump presidency.
 
 I agree with those who believe that if the president is unfit for office, then he should be removed from the presidency.The unaccountable group that purports to protect the American people was not elected to represent the nation.

 I repeat, if things are that bad, then the president needs to go. 

Where is the Congress? Where is the Senate? Surely the GOP leaders in Washington have more than a clue as to what's going on in the West Wing. 

Mike Pence, Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell, where are you? Where are our Texas senators Ted Cruz and John Cornyn on this governance by a secret self-appointed committee? 

The Russians, Koch brothers and other external players are not the main culprits. The real villains here are our failed representatives.

As expected, the president lashed out at the op-ed article, while members of his inner circle took turns to publicly deny their involvement. Trump also demanded for the New York Times to turn over the name of the essay's author.

There is doubt that the influential newspaper strongly vetted the source of the opinion piece before agreeing to publish it, and the management probably also weighed the source's motives.

During the same week, various news outlets churned out excerpts from Bob Woodward's newest book which unleashed a series of embarrassing disclosures about the Trump presidency. The book "Fear: Trump in the White House" (Simon & Schuster; 2018)  is scheduled for public release on Sept. 11, a remarkably coincidental date.
Bob Woodward*

According to the Huffington Post, the president also pushed back hard on the allegations presented in Woodward's book. Woodward is the Washington Post reporter who along with Carl Bernstein exposed the Watergate scandal that led to ex-President Richard Nixon's resignation. Huffington Post

The book that he and Bernstein wrote "All the President's Men" is considered required reading for aspiring journalists. Woodward, regarded by some as a dean of journalism, is 75 and has come out swinging and landing punches in this latest book. USA Today

Among other things, both the book and New York Times anonymous essay, strongly suggest that Trump is mentally unstable. U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) is openly calling on the president's cabinet to use the 25th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to remove Trump from his post. In such a case, the vice president (Mike Pence) would assume the presidency. Warren in Yahoo News

After this week's shocking revelation, none of Trump's current cabinet members are taking a step to replace the president, or attempt to do so. House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate leader Mitch McConnell, both Republicans, at least publicly, did not appear to take the allegations seriously. The Republican National Committee has not stepped in either with stated concerns. 

Perhaps the Republicans are waiting for Brett Kavanaugh to be confirmed as the next justice to the U.S. Supreme Court, not considering that the man who nominated him, the president, is believed to be the unnamed co-conspirator in the federal indictment against Trump's former attorney Michael Cohen. 

Despite the rocky confirmation proceedings in the Senate, the GOP has enough votes to get Kavanaugh seated on the court. If that happens, then the Republicans would end up wielding power or control in the executive, legislative and judicial branches of U.S. government.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller, according to the letter appointing him in 2017, he is authorized to investigate "any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump; and any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation; and any other matters within the scope" of the investigation. Letter appointing special counsel

The Republicans' other concerns are focused on the Nov. 6 mid-term elections, which could cost them the majority in the House of Representatives if Democrats turn out in big numbers to vote for their candidates. 
Barack Obama

Ex-President Barack Obama reentered U.S. politics this week to campaign for Democrats in key races. Obama's return, Politico The former commander-in-chief is still a force to reckon with, and he will prove it in the coming weeks.

It wouldn't be so bad if the major scandal that's sweeping the U.S. government was restricted to political infighting. However, it represents a continually evolving crisis that could jeopardize foreign relations at a time when the geopolitical situations in Europe, Asia and South America are in precarious stages.

The damage to the nation has already occurred. Now what's left is for true leaders to muster the courage, assume their rightful role in our history, and do the right thing.

*Credit LBJ Library

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Diana Washington Valdez



Diana Washington Valdez, Digie Zone Network publisher, is an award-winning journalist and author based in Texas.
Also on Facebook.com/thedigiezone and @digiezone