If Clinton did what Trump has done
This appeared in USA Today:
Imagine what would have happened had a President Hillary Clinton abruptly fired the man overseeing an investigation of her campaign’s ties to a hostile foreign government.
Imagine if the firing came, according to The New York Times, weeks after Clinton had asked the man to drop a probe of a close associate who had lied about conversations with that nation’s ambassador.
Imagine, further, what would have happened had she invited the ambassador and foreign minister of that hostile government to the Oval Office at the request of their autocratic leader, closed the meeting to U.S. journalists, and claimed to have been tricked when the foreign adversary’s media arm released chummy photos from the meeting.
And then imagine that she had used the meeting to share classified intelligence with the envoys.
Republicans in Congress and conservative news outlets would undoubtedly be clamouring for investigations, if not impeachment. After all, Clinton’s critics spent years trying to make a capital case out of the Benghazi tragedy, then pounded her careless handling of sensitive information through her use of a private server for State Department emails.
Now, many of those formerly apoplectic Republicans are shrugging off Trump’s behaviour — his campaign’s suspicious ties to the Russian government, his dismissal of FBI director James Comey and his sharing of classified information with two high-level Russian officials — with only a modest sense of annoyance.
Rather than trying to make excuses for the president, Republicans should be providing leadership, staying true to their oaths of office, and serving as credible checks on Trump’s excesses.
Even before getting briefed on the latest outrages, they should demand that the next FBI director be a non-partisan career professional, not a politician who could be co-opted by the administration.
It’s time for GOP lawmakers to demand more accountability and more competence from their president, whose suitability for office grows ever more tenuous.