Monday, July 03, 2017

Trump (King Kong) Meets Godzilla (Blumenthal)

We all know President Donald Trump is thin-skinned, as witnessed the bloodstained Mika Brzezinski of “Morning Joe.” Recently, Trump tweeted about Ms. Brzezinski, now affianced to Joe Scarborough, the Joe of “Morning Joe,” that she had visited him recently and was “bleeding badly from a face-lift.”

The usual kerfuffle in social media ensued, and Trump was bare-knuckled by what he considers media thugs, purveyors of “fake news.” Following the pummeling, Trump tweeted, more temperately, “Crazy Joe Scarborough and dumb as a rock Mika are not bad people, but their low rated show is dominated by their NBC bosses. Too bad!"

If tweets had been available in the glory days of President Andy Jackson, the father of the modern Democratic Party might more easily have signaled to John Calhoun, once Jackson’s Vice President, that if the newly elected Senator from South Carolina continued to press nullification in response to federal tariffs adversely impacting the economy of his state, Jackson would send federal troops to South Carolina to apprehend Calhoun and hang him from the nearest oak tree. Troops were sent; South Carolina abandoned its Nullification Ordinance; Calhoun was not hanged; tariffs were made less onerous; and a nullification dispute between the North and the South abated for a few decades, after which a bloody Civil War decided the issues of nullification and slavery.

Try to imagine, if you will, the incendiary tweets the Civil War might have generated.

Resemblances between Trump and Jackson have been made by the lying media – but, really, Trump is no Jackson. He has not yet threatened to hang his persistent Connecticut “never-Trumpers,” U.S. Senators Dick Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, from the state’s gypsy-moth infested oak trees.

Relations between these three are iffy, according to a story in a Hartford paper, “Amid Vitriol, Can Trump, State's U.S. Senators Come To Terms On Coveted Appointment?” 

The coveted appointment is the position soon to be vacated by retiring U.S. District Judge Robert Chatigny, who some years ago improperly intervened in the execution of mass murderer Michael Ross, for which Judge Chatigny was rebuked, though not fired. It is nearly impossible for an aggrieved public to fire a renegade judge. Even Andy Jackson could not have fired Chatigny. Old age is now bearing him off.

The legal world, according to the story, is waiting with bated breath “to see how Trump and two of his most strident critics come to terms over coveted political appointments.”

The reporter uses the expression “strident critics” to characterize the opposition of Blumenthal and Murphy to past presidential choices. But this is a considerable understatement. Critics render opinions; U.S. Senators register votes. And Blumenthal and Murphy, both “never Trumpers,” have opposed virtually all of President Trump’s major appointments. The usually cautious Blumenthal, a former Attorney General for two decades in Connecticut, went so far as to impute racism to former U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions, Trump’s choice for U.S. Attorney General.

“At one point during his cross examination of Sessions,” Connecticut Commentary noted, "U.S. Senator and mud thrower from Connecticut Dick Blumenthal subtly suggested that Sessions might have a soft spot in his heart for the KKK. Blumenthal noted that Sessions had received some awards during his twenty years in the Congress, among them an award from the David Horowitz Freedom Center, Frank Gaffney's Center for Security Policy and the Federation for American Immigration Reform, the latter of which Blumenthal noted is classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, according to a story in the Washington Examiner.

"'Given that you did not disclose a number of those awards,' Blumenthal asked Sessions, 'are there any other awards from groups that have similar kinds of ideological negative views of immigrants or of African-Americans or Muslims or others, including awards that you may have received from the Ku Klux Klan?'"

Should Trump seek to appoint to the U.S. District Court a judge who had received awards from the Klu Klux Klan, Blumenthal might just “blue slip” the nominee. The two Connecticut Democratic Senators  can “issue a blue slip, which kills the nomination by preventing the Judiciary Committee from scheduling confirmation hearings,” according to the story.

Blumenthal insists – wrongly – that such measures are “traditional.” They are extraordinary. Tradition holds that senators from the same party as the president may issue recommendations for judgeships; Blumenthal is a “never-Trumper” Democrat now in the process of suing Trump for having violated the emolument clause of the U.S. Constitution, while Trump is a duly elected Republican President who is under no obligation to accept judicial nominations from suit-prone party opposition pests such as Blumenthal.

One hopes such issues will not erupt into a bitter twitter war.

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