Ethics Expert, Walter Schaub, Lists Trump’s Ethical Violations

In Conflict of Interest, Misleading Information On

Every election cycle I go through what has become a ritual for me, of criticizing the Democrats for attacking the Republican leaders (Trump, Ryan, McConnell), rather than taking on the entire Republican cult.  I’ve always felt that too many uninformed voters will go into the voting booth and see the name of their local Republican running for governor all the way down to county supervisor, and not link the name to the object of Democratic attacks, and will think that this Republican is ok to vote for.  The Democrats need to make the case that, this time, they’re all the same!  There are thousands of Trumps waiting in the Republican cult to take control at every level (Georgia!).

Most of the people here realize that Trump didn’t reform the Republican party, but rather the Republican party has been this way for decades and they finally got someone who would openly express what they’ve always wanted.  No cult leader forms the cult in a few short months, it takes years of propaganda messaging to build the cult to the level where you know that you can shoot someone on 5th avenue and they will stick with you.

We should also stop accusing the Republicans in congress of being cowards because they whispered to their dear friends in the Senate cloak room that they really don’t agree with Trump, but they’re too afraid of their base to oppose him.  It’s time for Dems to quit being suckered!  These Republicans are benefiting from the racism, the misogyny, the fascism, the complicity with the attacks on our democratic institutions and norms, and they like it!

Walter Schaub, former director of the office of government ethics, calls out congressional Republicans for their lack of “moral character”.  He is FAR more respectful and eloquent than I can be, so here’s his twitter comments.

Replacing the AG with an unqualified partisan bulldog who  told us how he’d sabotage the investigation of Trump was a red line. Attempting to use DOJ to prosecute his political rivals was a red line.  /2

Participating in a failed cover up and then defending his top customer for the torture-murder of a Virginia resident who wrote for the Washington Post was a red line. Commiting a felony by lying on a financial disclosure form to conceal a hush money payoff was a red line. /3

Retaining his conflicting financial  interests and keeping them secret from the American people was a red line.Spending nearly 1/3 of his days in office visiting a Trump property & 1/4 of them at a Trump golf course, while using the presidency to promote them was a red line. /4

Refusing to vigorously investigate the attack on our election, refusing to upgrade our voting systems to resist future attacks, and instead cutting the budget of the EAC, which should be leading the upgrade effort, and gushing over our attacker in Helsinki was a red line. /5

Ignoring reports that his nepotistic son-in-law may have leaked classified information to the Saudi crown prince and ignoring the fact that he omitted key information from his security clearance form was a red line. /6

Sending the Counsel to the President to find out if a secret FISA warrant had been issued against his campaign and directing him to fire the special counsel was a red line. Asking the FBI Director to back off an investigation of the National Security Advisor was a red line. /7

Failing to fire a WH Counsel who asked the acting AG why DOJ cared if one WH official lied to another was a red line.Telling more lies to the American people in his first two years (and maybe more than ALL past presidents combined in their first two years) was a red line. /8

Reportedly considering turning Gulen over to Erdogan for likely torture and murder to distract from his favorite customer’s torture and murder of a U.S.-based journalist was a red line. /9

Actively intervening in career-level personnel actions, in violation of the merit systems principles, because he didn’t like being investigated, was a red line. /10

Separating families seeking asylum, failing to record their identities and family affiliations, and admitting the administration’s goal was “deterrence” was a red line. Sending the military to the border at a cost of tens of millions to influence an election was a red line. /11

Waging war on the freedom of the  press, the independence of the Department of Justice, the work of the FBI, and the very mission of the ethics office was a red line. /12

Reversing a half century of interpretation of the anti-nepotism law and then chanting “lock her up” as his nepotistic daughter used private email and his nepotistic son-in-law repeatedly omitted information from his ethics forms was a red line. /13

The partisan majority of this Congress should know that these are precedents that might be relied upon by future presidents of either party. They should know that they have betrayed their country by allowing things they would never have allowed Trump’s political rival to do. /14

They should know that history will judge them harshly. They should know that a majority of Americans already do. /15

I probably will disagree with him a little on the last point.  History is written by the winners of great struggles, and we don’t know how this struggle is going to end.  Our chances will not improve if we think that Replacing Trump, or Ryan, or McConnell, or any number of Republican Governors, with another Republican is going to make the Republican party something different than what they’ve been for decades.  This is who they are, and the sooner everyone who votes realizes it, the sooner we will be able to restore our democracy.

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Common Ground
We don’t need to search any further for common ground in our country. We have it.
We all want the same things – a safe, prosperous, free, democratic nation with opportunity for all. At the same time, we will all be harmed if our democracy, our free press, our Constitution and our core American values are threatened. We will all certainly be harmed if reckless behavior triggers any number of potential armed conflicts.

None of us know how this will all play out so let's make a deal. Let’s get up to speed on the issues, establish some facts, take action and watch what happens together . . .