‘The President’s New at This’
This seems to be the new GOP defense. They don’t even attempt to defend Trump on the facts. No one is arguing that James Comey is lying. And James Comey called Trump a liar, again and again.
The GOP is not even trying to pushback on that beyond-Gee, cut the poor guy some slack; he’s new at this.
“People now realize why the president is so frustrated when the FBI director tells him on three different occasions he is not under investigation, yet the speculation swirls around the political system that he is — that’s frustrating,” Ryan said.
He added: “I would just say that of course there needs to be a degree of independence between [the Department of Justice], FBI and the White House and a line of communications established. The president’s new at this. He’s new to government, and so he probably wasn’t steeped in the long-running protocols that establish the relationships between DOJ, FBI and White Houses. He’s just new to this.”
“Ryan was later pressed on whether Trump’s behavior can be excused out of inexperience.”
“I’m not saying it’s an acceptable excuse,” he said. “It’s just my observation.”
Talk about weasel words. But its’ all they seem to have left-Trump just doesn’t know any better. If that’s the case, the Oval Office sure is a good place for him.
Greg Sargent also notes this strategy:
“Now that James Comey’s testimony to Congress has painted a picture of President Trump’s contempt for the rule of law that’s far more forceful and persuasive in its dramatic details than Republicans ever bargained for, the new and emerging GOP defense is that Trump is a political and procedural naif. He merely needs to learn the rules. This line of obfuscation requires pretending many of the events of the last six months never happened.”
“But this spin from Republicans has a significance that runs deeper than merely revealing the absurd lengths to which they’ll go to protect Trump from political and legal harm. More urgently, their new line unwittingly reveals the degree to which Trump’s abuses of power and assault on our democracy have depended all along upon their tacit and willful complicity — and, perhaps worse, it leaves little doubt that this enabling will continue, with unforeseen consequences.”
“The Post’s Mike De Bonis has a good piece laying out this strategy. It takes various forms. Paul Ryan casts Trump’s interactions with Comey as a mere matter of inexperience. “The president’s new at this,” Ryan says, adding that Trump “probably wasn’t steeped in the long-running protocols” that under our system establish law enforcement’s independence from the White House. Others ground the argument in Trump’s business past or affection for the theatrics of disruption. “He’s used to being the CEO,” insists one House Republican. Senator Lindsey Graham adds that Trump is merely being “crude, rude and a bull in a china shop.”
“But Republicans making this argument are dishonestly feigning naivete about much of what we’ve seen from Trump since the beginning of his presidency. The problem with the idea that Trump merely needs to learn the rules is that we have a large pile of evidence showing that Trump is deeply convinced that the rules should not apply to him.”
Of course he doesn’t-this is the guy who claimed he could shoot someone on 5th Ave in NY and get away with it. This level of arrogance may seem unhinged but based on his entire life prior to this point it’s not unreasonable. Being Donald Trump has always meant you alone are never held accountable or ever have to suffer the consequences of your actions.
As for the GOP, they’re totally complicit-they just care about tax cuts for the rich-or that major piece of bank deregulation they passed yesterday.
“Comey’s previous effort to explain the rules to Trump went entirely ignored — twice. And when Comey testified yesterday, he said explicitlythat he took notes because he was “concerned Trump might lie” about their interactions, because of the “nature of the person.” Every Republican who continues to pretend Trump’s interactions with Comey are merely a matter of Trump’s inexperience, theatrical inclinations, or business mindset knows these basic facts. They all know perfectly well that Comey’s suspicions that Trump would deliberately mislead the American people about them had ample basis, and, indeed, are now being borne out.”
“Republicans, of course, have done little to nothing to check all of these abuses. But this amounts to more than mere abdication of oversight. It represents a refusal to acknowledge what all of these things add up to — a picture of a lawless president who does not believe that rules, norms, or constraints should apply to him. In this context, the spin that Trump will behave once he “learns the rules” represents a much broader and deeper abdication of responsibility to admit to, and grapple with, the authoritarian reality in our midst. Even worse, it confirms that their complicity with these abuses will continue. With Trump likely to continue descending to unforeseen depths, we have only begun to grasp the stakes of this enabling exercise, and have no idea where the bottom lies, in the minds of Republicans, or indeed if there is any bottom at all.”
As I’ve argued previously-if you want impeachment you need a Dem House 2019.
P.S. As we saw in my poll out last week, the long awaited poll results are in, and right now I’m just 11 points down vs. Peter King (GOP-NY-District 2). And the voters don’t even know who I am yet.
There is nothing more important in getting answers to Trump-Russia collusion than a Democratic House in 2019. Please donate to help me in my part of the effort to fight for a Dem House.
Thank you. We must have a Dem House. And so, we will.