Wednesday, January 17, 2024

A Very Clear Vision

It's as if, asked for her opinion about Senator Bernard Sanders, Nikki Haley had said "he just doesn't care about minimum wage workers."

Campaigning in mid-January in Iowa, the leading challenger to Donald Trump for the Republican presidential nomination stated

The majority disapprove of both of them. Trump and Biden are both about 80 years old. Trump and Biden both put our country deeper in debt and our kids will never forgive them for it. Both Trump and Biden lack a vision for our country's future because both are consumed by the past. 

A person begin at noon to list all the dangers Donald Trump poses and still be going strong at midnight. Each would be valid. And Nikki Haley's criticism is that he lacks a vision and is consumed by the past.

Of all the attributes and policies to condemn Trump for, the ex-governor/U.N. ambassador chooses one not inconsequential but demonstrably and radically invalid. On November 10, 2023 Mark Esper, who became Secretary of Defense after Jim Mattis resigned and later was fired by President Trump, remarked

I think if something like [the invocation of the Insurrection Act] were to happen right after an inauguration in January 2025, I guess there would not be a civilian chain of command in place at that point in time, first of all, to push back, So there would probably be an acting secretary, he or she would then have to decide whether or not to implement that order. Otherwise, the military chain of command would be intact. There's another option too. Most often, people go to the active duty, but there's nothing that prevents the president from asking a governor, a friendly governor, to mobilize his national guard to assist as well.

Evidently, as Esper noted, a President may legally invoke the Insurrection Act, which usually has been upon recommendation of the Attorney General, who on January 21, 2025, probably would be an acting attorney general. 

A few days earlier, on November 6, The Washington Post had explained

In public, Trump has vowed to appoint a special prosecutor to “go after” President Biden and his family. The former president has frequently made corruption accusations against them that are not supported by available evidence.

To facilitate Trump’s ability to direct Justice Department actions, his associates have been drafting plans to dispense with 50 years of policy and practice intended to shield criminal prosecutions from political considerations. Critics have called such ideas dangerous and unconstitutional....

Much of the planning for a second term has been unofficially outsourced to a partnership of right-wing think tanks in Washington. Dubbed “Project 2025,” the group is developing a plan, to include draft executive orders, that would deploy the military domestically under the Insurrection Act, according to a person involved in those conversations and internal communications reviewed by The Washington Post. The law, last updated in 1871, authorizes the president to deploy the military for domestic law enforcement.

The proposal was identified in internal discussions as an immediate priority, the communications showed. In the final year of his presidency, some of Trump’s supporters urged him to invoke the Insurrection Act to put down unrest after the murder of George Floyd in the summer of 2020, but he never did it. Trump has publicly expressed regret about not deploying more federal force and said he would not hesitate to do so in the future.

As if to validate the Post's reporting, in December the once and possibly future President told Sean Hannity that he would not be a dictator- "except for day one."  

Trump claimed that he was referring to expanding oil drilling and closing the southern border with Mexico, which may be two of his policy objectives. However, on January 20 or January 21, he likely would sign an order invoking the Insurrection Act to employ the military domestically, shutting down dissent and facilitating persecution and prosecution of his political enemies.

In response to Trump's promise, Biden campaign manager Julie Chavez Rodriguez issued a statement noting "Donald Trump has been telling us exactly what he will do if he's reelected and tonight he said he will be a dictator on day one. Americans should believe him."  No vision at all, Nikki Haley would say.



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