“Total and complete vindication” was Trump’s take on the testimony of James Comey this week before the Senate Intelligence Committee. The man may choose to live in a fantasy world if he wishes, but comments like that only reveal just how out of touch he is. Even the Republicans called his behavior inappropriate. But unlike all of the rest of us, Trump is never wrong and never apologizes.
Donald Trump is a self-anointed saint, perfect in every way. Still, I’m eagerly looking forward to the sworn testimony Trump volunteered to give – and to the release of any and all tapes of his conversations with Comey, something even Republicans are insisting upon.
Don’t hold your breath, however. Trump is a chronic and serial liar, someone who will say anything if he thinks it will benefit him to do so. But actually deliver truthful testimony under oath? The man likes to bluff, no doubt about it, but he would be risking a lot to do something like that, especially if the tapes exist.
For their part most of the Republican members of the Intelligence Committee were either incoherent (John McCain) or trying to run interference for Trump to one degree or another. They tried to make the case that Trump didn’t order Comey to drop the investigation of Michael Flynn; that he merely expressed a hope that Comey would. Coming after ordering everyone except Comey out of the room, how plausible is that?
I don’t think most reasonable people buy that this was an innocent conversation – or that Trump is a naif who didn’t know what he was doing was inappropriate either. As the New York Times points out in an excellent editorial well worth reading: “The president obviously knows that it’s wrong to interfere in an investigation. As a candidate, he repeatedly condemned Bill Clinton’s tarmac conversation with Loretta Lynch, then the attorney general overseeing an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server.”
Sadder still, Trump never once asked Comey what could or should be done to prevent future Russian interference in our elections. Sad! What ever happened to “and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States?” When did that get changed to “preserve, protect and defend Donald Trump?”
So, yes, I think David Fitzsimmons, the editorial cartoonist for the Arizona Daily Star (more of whose work is featured here), got at least part of it right in the above cartoon. Trump, the petulant child, shrinks daily as others rise by struggling to do the right thing for a country led by a very pathetic creature indeed.
A savage commentary on Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accord is our runner-up for the week.