Tag Archives: Donald Trump

Traitor Trump

Benedict Arnold

Benedict Arnold

Mr. Donald Trump was for leaks before he was against them.

Mr. Trump is strong in the truth because so little of what he says is true – and we all cherish what is rare.

Mr. Trump “won” an election by suppressing the truth and now he hopes to give flight to his lies by suppressing the press that would tell the truth about his lies.

Mr. Trump favored leaks in his public bromance with Russian President Vladimir Putin when they compromised former Secretary Hillary Clinton.

It’s a different “story,” however, when the leaks uncover how Mr. Trump’s adviser, Michael Flynn, may have been undermining the Obama Administration’s sanctions against Mr. Putin’s Russia for interfering in our nation’s presidential election.

Acting Assistant Attorney General Sally Yates found the taped conversation that Michael Flynn had with the Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in late December “highly significant” and “potentially illegal” because Mr. Flynn discussed the Obama sanctions against Russia. Continue reading

Trump betrays the American promise

Protest at the Dulles Airport, VA

Protest at the Dulles Airport, VA

The nation and the world recoils from the Tyrant in the West Wing, Mr. Donald Trump, who issued an illegal and unconstitutional executive order, universally decried at home and abroad as discriminatory, for barring legal immigrants with visas and green cards, without any advice beforehand from the Department of Homeland Security or U.S. Customs and Boarder Protection.

This executive fiat targeted predominantly Muslim nations, namely, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Sudan, Somalia, and Yemen, while excluding other Muslim nations including those where Mr. Trump has business interests.

Mr. Trump knew that he was usurping existing immigration law passed by the U.S. Congress, and fundamental constitutional standards of fairness, targeting Muslims he had every reason to believe presented absolutely no threat to this nation because they had already been vetted and found to present no threat to the United States.

Mr. Donald Trump issued his fiat last Friday, in the late afternoon, ironically enough on Holocaust Memorial Day, guaranteeing the inhumane chaos he plainly hoped to create.

From last Friday through the weekend, our nation’s airports were in disarray with government agents offering no resistance to Mr. Trump’s lawless fiat.  Continue reading

Womens march on Washington – the Lovettsville buses

The Womens March on Washington

The Womens March on Washington

Many of your neighbors from Lovettsville, and not just women, felt it was necessary to March on Washington the next day after the Inauguration this past Friday.

They were doing what many other communities were doing across the Commonwealth.

One local woman said, “You know how a woman speaks at a meeting and is ignored.  Then a man repeats the very same thought he just heard her say – and then it’s treated by the men as if it was the man’s idea all along.”

“Worse than that,” she said, “is when a woman enjoys the right of privacy to control her own body – and that’s not respected.”

This latter observation relates to what was plainly a defining moment in the recent presidential election for very many women, when it was widely disclosed, what Mr. Trump thought about women.

Mr. Trump said, “You can do anything … Grab them by the pussy, you can do anything.”

“And when you’re a star, they let you do it,” Mr. Trump said.

“You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful [women],” Trump said, “I just start kissing them.  It’s like a magnet, just kiss.  I don’t even wait.”

In other words, a woman said, “a woman’s consent is irrelevant to this guy.”

Trump confided to a like-minded male that he tried to have sex with one woman the two were about to join, knowing she was married.  He said, “I moved on her like a bitch.”

Mr. Trump favors tic tacs “just in case I start kissing…”

In the recent campaign, it is undisputed that Mr. Trump, by word and conduct, was transparently intolerant of persons by their gender, race, color, religion and place of origin.

Mr. Trump, however, reserved his special abuse for women, no matter whether the woman was a Fox anchor or an Oscar-winning actor.

Contradicting Mr. Trump invited slander, lies and relentless trash talk.

Women the world over saw in Mr. Trump’s November election the danger of sexual discrimination going forward in his Administration, impermissible incursions into the sanctity of the person, of the constitutional right to be let alone, of access to medical records, of equal pay for equal work, of their dignity – meaning shame for being a woman. Continue reading

America’s loss of virtue

G. Washington looking on at the Constitutional Convention (photo by John P. Flannery)

G. Washington looking on at the Constitutional Convention (photo by John P. Flannery)

These are the worst of times, in part, because President elect Donald Trump has flagrantly flaunted American law and sound principles of governance.

Mr. Trump betrayed the nation by publicly inviting Russian President Vladimir Putin, the head of a foreign nation state at odds with America, to interfere in our elections and to commit cybercrimes – to hack American party emails and servers.

President-elect Trump plainly intends to dismantle our system of laws.  The various Departments in the Executive Branch have evolved over time by complex statutory rights and obligations.  President elect Trump might therefore seek to revise a Department’s legislative authority.  Instead, Trump is infecting these Departments with incompetent pathogens, persons with no experience and antagonistic agenda at odds with the several Departments’ missions.

The Republican Party, the party of President Abraham Lincoln, has elected a man who would install as Attorney General a man who discriminated against blacks.

The party of President Teddy Roosevelt, who pressed the Congress to enact the Food and Drug Act in 1906 (the Wiley Act), has elected a man who would undermine that worthy legislation, that is, if you care what you eat or the prescriptions you use.

The party of President Dwight Eisenhower, who signed the National Defense Education Act in 1958, marking the beginning of large-scale involvement of the U.S. federal government in education, has now elected a man who would depreciate public schooling, by nominating Betsy DeVos, an antagonist of public schooling.

The party of President Richard Nixon, who created the EPA, at first by Executive Order, cared deeply how humans were compromising the quality of air that we breathe and the water we drink, has now elected a man who has nominated an Oklahoma AG who does not believe humans have any adverse effect on the environment. Continue reading

The U.S. constitution bars President-elect Donald Trump from becoming President unless…

THE U.S. CONSTITUTION BARS

PRESIDENT-ELECT DONALD TRUMP

FROM BECOMING PRESIDENT UNLESS…

Stock Photo of the Consitution of the United States and Feather Quill

__________________________

Prepared by

The Honorable John P. Flannery, II[1]

____________________________

 

Alexander Hamilton, “One of the weak sides of republics, among their numerous advantages, is that they afford too easy an inlet to foreign corruption.”[2]

 

  1. I.                   PRELIMINARY REMARKS

President-elect Donald J. Trump must disavow and disassociate himself from his extensive and complex personal holdings in foreign nation states, lest he blatantly disregard the constitutional prohibition that seeks to insulate the President, however virtuous, from the corrupting influence of foreign governments.

Any President-elect, in order to assume the office of President, must take the following oath:

“I do solemnly swear … that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States (underscoring supplied).”

President-elect Donald Trump will violate his oath of office and a critical constitutional precondition for serving as our Chief Executive unless, before he takes the oath, he separates himself completely from all favors and profits, so-called emoluments, from every other nation state.

The “emoluments clause” in the United States Constitution, at Article I, Section 9, clause 8, says, in relevant part, that “no person holding any office of profit or trust shall, without the consent of Congress, accept any present, emolument, office or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince or foreign state (underscoring supplied).”

This provision is mandatory, as expressed by the word, “shall,” and not permissive, as would be suggested were the word, “may.”  There was a similar anti-corruption provision in the Articles of Confederation strengthened in the U.S. Constitution by making the provision mandatory – “shall.”

President-elect Trump estimates his personal wealth at $10 billion, and occupies the unprecedented status as a President-elect both of having great wealth and more off shore holdings and foreign entanglements than any previous President-elect.

Worse, the full extent of Mr. Trump’s holding are unknown despite repeated demands that he disclose the full extent of his business “empire.”

According to published reports, Mr. Trump has shunned all advice to date to come to grips with this looming constitutional violation.

In fact, Mr. Trump has said that, as President, he “can’t have a conflict of interest,” akin to the much-criticized formulation President Nixon once invoked, sounding, royally, as a presidential prerogative, entitling the President to be above the law binding everyone else.

Mr. Trump’s anorexic financial disclosures combined with what journalists have uncovered about his offshore holdings beg the question whether Mr. Trump can resist the understandable self-serving impulse to favor his foreign business interests over the interests of the nation.

If Mr. Trump does not cure this divided loyalty, and disregards the constitutional dictate of the emoluments clause barring his easy tolerance of the corrupt conflicting influence of foreign nation states, he risks, indeed he invites, an impeachment resolution under Article 2, Section 4 of the United States Constitution, and it will happen sooner or later, for his abject failure to insulate the office of President from foreign influence.

Mr. Trump may seem immune from impeachment given the electoral reality of Republican majorities in both Chambers of the U.S. Congress.

We should not assume, however, that party loyalty is so ethically elastic that Mr. Trump may forever enjoy an unlimited license to indulge his divided loyalty, to his business’ advantage, no matter what is the best interest of the nation. Continue reading

We the people

Protest in Richmond (photo by John P. Flannery)

Protest in Richmond (photo by John P. Flannery)

There’s a Chinese curse – “may you live in interesting times.”

We are living in “interesting times,” in fact, in quite challenging times.

We worked our heart and soul to elect the first woman president of the United States.

That’s both interesting and “historic.”

Virginia wanted Hillary.

The nation needed her.

According to the popular vote, the nation preferred that Hillary Clinton be our next president.

But the electoral college is the constitutional measure of such things, and thus we shall have a failed casino operator, Donald Trump, as our President – a crass, disrespectful, cursing, hate-filled, lying, intolerant bully, who pretends to know much about everything, while having little experience at much of anything having to do with public policy and governance.

This man ran down our nation for the last year, picking fights, pushing people around, promising somehow, by these tactics, that he’d make America great again.

Trump doesn’t know what makes this nation great.

It is that we conceived of ourselves as a nation as one united – one from many.

This “got-your-back” promise of unity has been our nation’s North Star, what we have fought to perfect from the very beginning.

We have struggled in fits and starts, not without pain, not without blood and suffering, indeed, not without a civil war, not without women being jailed and tortured for demanding the right to vote.

The French made a gift to this still young nation of a tall statue, a maiden who stands with a flaming torch of liberty uplifted high for the whole world to see, beckoning the suffering masses to our shores to find freedom.  We’re not going to go back on that promise, are we?

What could be a more grievous violation of what makes us great, than to divide our nation.

President Lincoln said – “a House divided cannot stand.”

More than any time in my life since the 60s, have we seen such intolerance by a presidential candidate based on a person’s skin color, gender, religion, nation of origin, and sexual orientation.

Mature citizens who are hardly politically obsessive, who are just plain folk, cannot sleep.  Perhaps you couldn’t either.

Children cry at home and in class because they know and they fear we are re-defining our nation’s social contract; they are being counseled.

Protesters take to the streets, the vice-president elect is booed at a theater in New York, and the President rebuffs an actor’s plea for reassurance, signaling the President elect’s low threshold to strike out at others.

We are also hard-pressed in the history of American politics to find anything like Russia’s intrusion into our presidential election.

FBI Director Comey irreparably intruded into this election in the final days of the campaign.

These compromises of our electoral process eclipses Nixon’s dirty tricks in 1972. Continue reading

FBI Director Comey bobbles confidential investigative info

gallery_justiceWhen I was a New York federal prosecutor, in the same Manhattan office where FBI Director James B. Comey served under then US Attorney Rudolph Giuliani, we did not ever say publicly that we had an “ongoing investigation,” because we wanted to protect the investigation from disclosure, it was also against Justice Department guidelines, and we did not want to expose anyone to ridicule and humiliation who might never be charged or prosecuted.

Nor would we release information about a public official in an imminent election, less than two weeks away in the presidential election at hand, and we would never have “suggested” there might be wrongdoing when we had no evidence whatsoever of wrongdoing – and you don’t have any evidence – if you haven’t even asked a federal judge to issue a warrant to review the “suspect” information.

When Director Comey wrote the U.S. Congress, telling them that he had information from an “unrelated” investigation, he admitted he didn’t know if it “contained classified information.”

Nor could he say he had anything “important.”

Director Comey wrote Congress to tell them the FBI had to “assess their importance.”

And Director Comey couldn’t say that what he had was “significant.”  Director Comey confessed that “the FBI cannot yet assess whether or not this material may be significant.”

Director Comey felt he had to explain himself to FBI personnel, as what he was doing was unprecedented; he wrote, “We don’t ordinarily tell Congress about ongoing investigations.”

Director Comey thus did what was extraordinary and he knew it. Continue reading

Leadership for a change

LuAnn Bennett for Congress

LuAnn Bennett for Congress

I hear a lot of people saying they wish this election season was over.

As a person who has spent a large part of my life concerned about matters political and legal, I understand the electoral weariness, especially this campaign season.

But how this election is done, how it’s finished, is going to be critically important to the nation and our communities, so, unless we prefer to regret the results at our leisure, we have to pay attention now.

One of my political heroes, Robert Kennedy, was fond of saying when the going gets tough, the tough get going.  This is a tough election and we need to be tougher.

I’ve already decried the Republican presidential nominee as abusive, intolerant, especially abusive of women, and unfit for office.

We must, however, also consider who should represent us in Congress.

Congresswoman Barbara Comstock, the incumbent, is somewhat of a puzzle to me.

I’ve watched Barbara appear at many local events, especially in Western Loudoun, passing out balloons bearing her name, posting those oversized signs that should be banned, and succeeding at remaining as content free of any controversy as one possibly can, offering poll tested nostrums that offend as few voters as is politically possible.

Barbara is a prominent member of a do-nothing Congress directed by her Republican Caucus, led by Speaker Paul Ryan.

The Republican controlled Congress couldn’t move its lumbering “deliberative” self only days ago to grant emergency funds to Flint, Michigan where the health and safety of women and children remain at grave risk.  Continue reading

The fates

trump_donaldSeneca wrote that the fates either lead you to your destiny or drag you to it.  Republican leaders have been dragged to their destiny, when they must belatedly denounce their presidential nominee, Mr. Donald Trump, for what we’ve all known from the outset about his lack of character.

Mr. Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, has proven himself to be a billion dollar failed casino owner, mob associate, serial liar, trash talker, a slanderer, misogynist, and bully to men and women alike.

Mr. Trump has violated all the customary norms of polite and respectful personal conduct.

Mr. Trump relies on a syntax that, when tweeting or speaking, obscures and defies clarity and common language usage bordering on a word salad.

Almost from the time that Mr. Trump announced his candidacy at his gaudy gold plated 5th Avenue tower, seemingly inspired by Ayn Rand’s “The Fountainhead,” America has been on notice that Mr. Trump is intolerant of immigrants, blacks, Muslims, Jews, the disabled, those who are overweight, generals, veterans, war heroes, the parents of a Muslim soldier who gave his life in the mid-east, anyone who crosses him, and his most blatant disrespect is reserved for women.

Mr. Trump was bad news the day he announced, most thought his candidacy was some sort of joke, since Trump has never served the public in any appointed or elected capacity, and, when he won the Republican nomination, too few Republican leaders denounced him. Continue reading

Homeland insecurity

concordmilitiaWe have changed our definition of what’s freedom.

I stand in court rooms in defense of the Accused and invoke the presumption we are all innocent including those charged.

Our government treats us, however, as if we are all presumed guilty, that we must prove otherwise, and we are all treated as suspect for the commission of some unstated possible terrorist act – without any evidence whatsoever.

We have become accustomed to being searched and radiated at airports and public buildings, though we comply reluctantly.

For years now the government, “our” government, has also been collecting every bit of information it can about who we are, what we do, what we say, where we go, what we write, our financial holdings, and with whom we associate.

Our personal information is being inhaled into the government’s mammoth data banks at the cost of our expectation and right to be let alone.

Yet, we brag our freedom is the envy of the world.

The fear of those who would govern this nation is compromising the freedom of the governed.

When 9-11 occurred, I was ashamed of the members of Congress.  Little has changed since. Continue reading