- Whether you think President Trump is guilty of crimes or not, one thing is clear. He’s an unethical, mobster-like (at least the Hollywood version) president who daily lies, gives orders to staff who, according to the report and its assigned tasks to investigate, smart enough to ignore his orders.(Uh, read that last part again: the President of the United States orders to his staff often are ignored because following them would be criminal or morally wrong.)
- Trump, who fancies himself – and is – a brilliant marketer and master of branding has succeeded in damaging seriously the United States brand of free speech, freedom of the press, a beacon for immigrants, rule of law and other institutions we are respected for. And he did it in just two years.
- Trump was smart enough to know that when a special counsel was appointed he was “fucked” -- a quote that likely will be widely remembered in future volumes of presidential quotes. The counsel, though, didn’t “fuck” the President, the President “fucked” himself with his conduct in office.
- Special Counsel Bob Mueller once again in his career proved he is a straight shooter. Every word of his report was carefully chosen, every rule of the Department of Justice was followed. He did not “charge” Trump with obstruction of justice because the Department of Justice has a rule or policy against indicting a sitting President. But he chose a path where he certainly laid out the case if the Congress wants to make it.
- Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her leadership team are right not to pursue impeachment now – there isn’t enough time for the process to happen before the next presidential election and it would, politically, split this country even more. There will be great pressure on her but she’ll withstand it and the firebrands of the freshmen class will learn leadership is there for a reason.
- Bottom line, the Russians interfered with our election and are doing it still. The President should at least acknowledge that because as much of a danger as Trump is to this country’s foundations – Russia succeeded bigly in its efforts to create havoc in our free society.
- The combination of a morally-challenged President and an adversary/enemy the size of Russia is a serious threat to the country as we know it. Neither can be ignored.
- Trump feels entitled to run the country like he ran his businesses – centered in family and personal loyalty and rule/law breaking – in his first term. Imagine a second term when he could say with some credibility “the voters knew all the information and still re-elected me.” It will be utter chaos.
- The Mueller Report proves more than a few times, that when Trump and his henchmen yell “fake news” it is they who are lying, not the media. People should pay attention to that because in recent surveys, the media are falling in their respect. Some of that is their own doing (cable talking heads come to mind) and a lot of it is Trump yelling “fake news” every time a story appears that he doesn’t like. Funny, he’ll quote the New York Times, Washington Post and others when it makes him look good, and yell “enemy of the people” when he looks bad.
- This White House has lied to the people, and the media, literally from Day One of its swearing in (does attendance at the inaugural ring a bell?). They lie with abandon and without even thinking about it. Take, Trump’s spokesman, Sarah Sanders. She makes things up on the spot like Trump does. The report specifically mentions the time Ms Sanders told the then-then daily, or close to it, briefing that many FBI agents called or wrote her(why they’d call her never made sense) to support Trump’s firing of the FBI director, James Comey. She made it up on the spot and claimed to the special counsel that it was a ‘slip of the tongue.’ No, Sarah, that is not a slip of the tongue – that is a lie. And you know it. And you’re lucky you didn’t get charged with perjury for lying to the special counsel.
- Attorney General William Barr came into this Administration with a good reputation as a lawyer and former AG. His performance the last few weeks runs in the face of that. For a guy who came in saying he had nothing to lose by standing up to the President, if need be, he failed his first test based on the evidence.
- The final report card on Trump won’t be marked until the 2020 election. Trump will be able to beat some Democrats, barring any other crazy happenings in his last year and a half (I won’t even attempt to define “crazy” with this president. The Democrats need to choose their candidate with care.
The long-awaited Mueller Report is out (redacted) and basically tells each side of America’s polarization they were right. Some thoughts:
B. Jay Cooper
B. Jay is a former deputy White House press secretary to Presidents Reagan and George H.W. Bush. He also headed the communications offices at the Republican National Committee, U.S. Department of Commerce, and Yale University. He is a former reporter and is the retired deputy managing director of APCO Worldwide's Washington, D.C., office.