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Do You Believe in the Deep State Now?

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

That’s a natural reaction to the revelation of Andrew G. McCabe, the former deputy FBI director, that top Justice Department officials, alarmed by Donald Trump’s firing of former Bureau director James Comey, explored a plan to invoke the 25th Amendment and kick the duly elected president out of office.

According to New York Times reporters Adam Goldman and Matthew Haag, McCabe made the statement in an NBC 60 Minutes interview to be aired on Sunday. He also reportedly said that McCabe wanted the so-called Russia collusion investigation to go after Trump for obstructing justice in firing Comey and for any instances they could turn up of his working in behalf of Russia.  

The idea of invoking the 25th Amendment was discussed, it seems, at two meetings on May 16, 2017. According to McCabe, top law enforcement officials pondered how they might recruit Vice President Pence and a majority of cabinet members to declare in writing, to the Senate’s president pro tempore and the House speaker, that the president was “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.” That would be enough, under the 25th Amendment, to install the vice president as acting president, pushing aside Trump.

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But to understand what kind of constitutional crisis this would unleash and the precedent it would set, it’s necessary to ponder the rest of this section of the 25th Amendment. The text prescribes that, if the president, after being removed, transmits to the same congressional figures that he is indeed capable of discharging his duties, he shall once again be president after four days. But if the vice president and the cabinet majority reiterate their declaration within those four days that the guy can’t govern, Congress is charged with deciding the issue. It then takes a two-thirds vote of both houses to keep the president removed, which would have to be done within 21 days, during which time the elected president would be sidelined and the vice president would govern. If Congress can’t muster the two-thirds majority within the prescribed time period, the president “shall resume the powers and duties of his office.”

It’s almost impossible to contemplate the political conflagration that would ensue under this plan. Citizens would watch those in Washington struggle with the monumental question of the fate of their elected leader under an initiative that had never before been invoked, or even considered, in such circumstances. Debates would flare up over whether this comported with the original intent of the amendment; whether it was crafted to deal with physical or mental “incapacitation,” as opposed to controversial actions or unsubstantiated allegations or even erratic decision making; whether such an action, if established as precedent, would destabilize the American republic for all time; and whether unelected bureaucrats should arrogate to themselves the power to set in motion the downfall of a president, circumventing the impeachment language of the Constitution.

For the past two years, the country has been struggling to understand the two competing narratives of the criminal investigation of the president.

One narrative—let’s call it Narrative A—has it that honorable and dedicated federal law enforcement officials developed concerns over a tainted election in which nefarious Russian agents had sought to tilt the balloting towards the candidate who wanted to improve U.S.-Russian relations and who seemed generally unseemly. Thus did the notion emerge, quite understandably, that Trump had “colluded” with Russian officials to cadge a victory that otherwise would have gone to his opponent. This narrative is supported and protected by Democratic figures and organizations, by adherents of the “Russia as Threat” preoccupation, and by anti-Trumpers everywhere, particularly news outlets such as CNN, The Washington Post, and The New York Times.

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The other view—Narrative B—posits that certain bureaucratic mandarins of the national security state and the outgoing Obama administration resolved early on to thwart Trump’s candidacy. After his election, they determined to undermine his political standing, and particularly his proposed policy toward Russia, through a relentless and expansive investigation characterized by initial misrepresentations, selective media leaks, brutal law enforcement tactics, and a barrage of innuendo. This is the narrative of most Trump supporters, conservative commentators, Fox News, and The Wall Street Journal editorial page, notably columnist Kimberley Strassel.  

The McCabe revelation won’t affect the battle of the two narratives. As ominous and outrageous as this “deep state” behavior may seem to those who embrace Narrative B, it will be seen by Narrative A adherents as evidence that those law enforcement officials were out there heroically on the front lines protecting the republic from Donald J. Trump.

And those Narrative A folks won’t have any difficulty tossing aside the fact that McCabe was fired as deputy FBI director for violating agency policy in leaking unauthorized information to the news media. He then allegedly violated the law in lying about it to federal investigators on four occasions, including three times while under oath.

Indeed, Narrative A people have no difficulty at all brushing aside serious questions posed by Narrative B people. McCabe is a likely liar and perjurer? Doesn’t matter. Peter Strzok, head of the FBI’s counterespionage section, demonstrated his anti-Trump animus in tweets and emails to Justice official Lisa Page? Irrelevant. Christopher Steele’s dossier of dirt on Trump, including an allegation that the Russians were seeking to blackmail and bribe him, was compiled by a man who had demonstrated to a Justice Department official that he was “desperate that Donald Trump not get elected and…passionate about him not being president”? Not important. The dossier was paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic Party? Immaterial. Nothing in the dossier was ever substantiated? So what?

Now we have a report from a participant of those meetings that top officials of the country’s premier law enforcement entity sat around and pondered how to bring down a sitting president they didn’t like. The Times even says that McCabe “confirmed” an earlier report that deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein suggested wearing a wire in meetings with Trump to incriminate him and make him more vulnerable to the plot.

There is no suggestion in McCabe’s interview pronouncements or in the words of Scott Pelley, who conducted the interview and spoke to CBS This Morning about it, that these federal officials ever took action to further the aim of unseating the president. There doesn’t seem to be any evidence that they approached cabinet members or the vice president about it. “They…were speculating, ‘This person would be with us, this person would not be,’ and they were counting noses in that effort,” said Pelley. He added, apparently in response to Rosenstein’s insistence that his comments about wearing a wire were meant as a joke, “This was not perceived to be a joke.”

What are we to make of this? Around the time of the meetings to discuss the 25th Amendment plot, senior FBI officials also discussed initiating a national security investigation of the president as a stooge of the Russians or perhaps even a Russian agent. These talks were revealed by The New York Times and CNN in January, based on closed-door congressional testimony by former FBI general counsel James Baker. You don’t have to read very carefully to see that the reporters on these stories brought to them a Narrative A sensibility. The Times headline: “F.B.I. Opened Inquiry into Whether Trump Was Secretly Working on Behalf of Russia.” CNN’s: “Transcripts detail how FBI debated whether Trump was ‘following directions’ of Russia.” And of course, whoever leaked those hearing transcripts almost surely did so to bolster the Narrative A version of events.

The independent journalist Gareth Porter, writing at Consortium News, offers a penetrating exposition of the inconsistencies, fallacies, and fatuities of the Narrative A matrix, as reflected in how the Times and CNN handled the stories that resulted from what were clearly self-interested leaks.

Porter notes that a particularly sinister expression in May 2017 by former CIA director John O. Brennan, a leading Trump antagonist, has precipitated echoes in the news media ever since, particularly in the Times. Asked in a committee hearing if he had intelligence indicating that anyone in the Trump campaign was “colluding with Moscow,” Brennan dodged the question. He said his experience had taught him that “the Russians try to suborn individuals, and they try to get them to act on their behalf either wittingly or unwittingly.”

Of course you can’t collude with anybody unwittingly. But Brennan’s fancy expression has the effect of expanding what can be thrown at political adversaries, to include not just conscious and nefarious collaboration but also policy advocacy that could be viewed as wrongheaded or injurious to U.S. interests. As Porter puts it, “The real purpose…is to confer on national security officials and their media allies the power to cast suspicion on individuals on the basis of undesirable policy views of Russia rather than on any evidence of actual collaboration with the Russian government.”

That seems to be what’s going on here. There’s no doubt that McCabe and Rosenstein and Strzok and Brennan and Page and many others despised Trump and his resolve to thaw relations with Russia. They viewed him as a president “who needed to be reined in,” as a CNN report described the sentiment among top FBI officials after the Comey firing.

So they expanded the definition of collusion to include “unwitting” collaboration in order to justify their machinations. It’s difficult to believe that people in such positions would take such a cavalier attitude toward the kind of damage they could wreak on the body politic.

Now we learn that they actually sat around and plotted how to distort the Constitution, just as they distorted the rules of official behavior designed to hold them in check, in order to destroy a presidential administration placed in power by the American people. It’s getting more and more difficult to dismiss Narrative B.

Robert W. Merry, longtime Washington journalist and publishing executive, is the author most recently of President McKinley: Architect of the American Century.

92 Comments (Open | Close)

92 Comments To "Do You Believe in the Deep State Now?"

#1 Comment By Ken T On February 16, 2019 @ 11:56 am

So for government officials to have been discussing (while doing nothing to act on) the 25th amendment to the Constitution is unconstitutional.

You have sunk to a new level of incoherence.

#2 Comment By Contra1789 On February 16, 2019 @ 12:07 pm

The problem is not the existence of the deep state. It’s inevitable that there will be unelected officials who will continue to shape policy regardless of who is elected President. The problem is that the deep state is blatantly working to undermine its elected leadership. If you can’t in good conscience work with your President, the honorable thing to do is resign as some undoubtedly have. It’s not an excuse for insubordination.

#3 Comment By Michael Fuerst On February 16, 2019 @ 4:26 pm

Any use of the 25th amendment will be a constitutional crisis. People in the FBI saw Trump and those who worked for him as having violated our laws to an extent that could threaten national security. Mostly Republicans. They are heroes.

#4 Comment By Ken Zaretzke On February 16, 2019 @ 4:57 pm

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Also very good is the blunt force trauma inflicted on the FBI in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal by Kimberly Strassel.

#5 Comment By JohnPerth On February 17, 2019 @ 1:20 am

It’s a pity Narrative A types can’t read.

The thrust of this article is precisely that Narrative B is accurate. Complaining that Merry is arguing that the Narrative A devotees tried to remove Trump is to assault a draw man. His claim isn’t that they endeavoured to apply the 25th Amendment, his claim is that they were so thoroughly immersed in their fantasy (Narrative A) that they discussed applying a non-applicable process, when if their fantasy were correct, there is an entirely applicable process to apply, ie impeachment. This insanity supports the accuracy of Narrative B.

#6 Comment By JCEN On February 17, 2019 @ 10:26 am

I looked for a conservative site that was declared to be reliable so I could get another view of the news, but this article raises some serious questions about whether this is a conspiracy theory site or not. The only person who uses the word collusion in the Donald investigation is the POTUS himself… and conspiracy theorists. That word is found nowhere in Mueller’s reason for investigating Donald. Maybe that’s why this author is so confused. At the very least couldn’t someone have put OpEd somewhere near the top of this piece?

#7 Comment By Oleg Gark On February 17, 2019 @ 10:43 am

You can drill down into the details all you want, but the net effect of what the FBI did in the last presidential election was to give an unwarranted pass to Hillary’s real violations of the law regarding her private email server and an unwarranted inquisition into Trump’s fantasy-based collusion with the Russian government. Heads deserved to roll over this and they still do.

#8 Comment By Egypt Steve On February 17, 2019 @ 11:51 am

Re: “So let me get this straight… so long as the procedures set forth in the U.S. Constitution are followed, regardless of the reasoning behind it, the results is appropriate and correct, in your opinion?”

I am happy to let you you get it straight, if you’re capable. What I said was — and this is so obvious that it’s a tautology — that any constitutional procedure is ipso facto constitutional. Whether the “result” of such a procedure is “appropriate” or “correct” are two entirely separate questions.

For example: I don’t deny that Trump’s election was carried out in accordance with the Constitution; he’s legally and constitutionally President, and that’s that. And it’s certainly an “appropriate” exercise of the judgement of the electorate to put anyone in power that they choose. But I would strongly argue that the result of the election was anything other than “correct.”

#9 Comment By JeffK On February 17, 2019 @ 12:09 pm

@Frank Lettucebee says:
February 15, 2019 at 10:05 pm

“Being how the Republicans have come to his defence and the NRA has been shown a dimwitted dupe for Moscow for the last little while, you have to wonder how deep and endemic is the treason gene to the right wing..”

It has been reported The Russians hacked both Democrat and Republican emails. If so, why haven’t Republican emails been released?

I bet The Russians have a rich cache of juicy emails between Republicans that would be quite embarrassing. If so, that could explain much Republican behavior.

#10 Comment By Egypt Steve On February 17, 2019 @ 1:00 pm

Re: ” they discussed applying a non-applicable process.”

Assumes facts not in evidence. We know, or think we know, that certain acts by Trump, including the firing of James Comey, prompted Rosenstein and others to ponder whether it would be possible to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump. What we don’t know is what they thought would, or could, be the actual justification for such a move.

I assume they are able to read the Constitution perfectly well, and would know full-well that an act by the President, no matter how illegal, would not be a sufficient predicate for using the 25th Amendment.

However, what they might well have mulled over, was that said acts were or could be an indication of a deeper disability, possibly of a psychological or emotional kind, that might meet the 25th Amendment’s requirements. Nothing on the public record that I’ve seen actually speaks to this question and this distinction at all.

Anyhow, a “discussion” is hardly a coup. Trump remains in office, the worse for all of us.

#11 Comment By Marcus Golden On February 17, 2019 @ 5:41 pm

These activities, nearly, but so as alarming as Mr. Trump’s unhinged, amateurish rhetoric, remain nonetheless child’s play compared to the escapades against ordinary citizens.

Those who bother to speak out to clear the air, from experience and observation, rather than political passion and agenda, will find themselves subject not only to unwarranted and illegal eavesdropping, but also political-military activities that would shame a Soviet apparatchik.

Want to be a guinea pig for the Deep State? Stand up. Have a mildly controversial political opinion and say it openly. Don’t suck up to power. A citizen who lives without patronage, who is independent and tries, her best, to seek the truth, baffles the self eating snakes of the DC Swamp.

Perhaps the fallout from the FBI-Russia Covfefe will bring some much need light to this dark, slithering world, and also much needed reforms. We needed them once; it’s time to take a look again:

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#12 Comment By GaryH On February 17, 2019 @ 6:26 pm

A ‘Deep State’ has ruled the UK since at least ‘The Glorious Revolution.’ A Deep State’ has ruled the US since at least the 2nd Wilson administration.

The US Deep State of today is different from its pre-1990s predecessors in that today it is 100% globalist and hates the ‘basket of deplorables’ in fly over country the way that Trotsky hated ethnic Russians.

#13 Comment By Patricus On February 17, 2019 @ 7:57 pm

About the “overwhelming evidence that Trump is a tool of the Kremlin” I find myself underwhelmed. Would someone produce just one piece of credible evidence that Trump and the Russians fixed the election in 2016? Leave out the hearsay please.

#14 Comment By William On February 17, 2019 @ 8:53 pm

Comey has broken multiple laws as has Clinton, Rosenstein and McCabe. Page and Styzok were anything but fair and impartial as has been the similar approach of the one who selected them to participate in his bullying special investigation. Since when would anyone consider it reasonable for a prosecutor to seize all the files and notes of the defendant’s lawyer, black mailing the lawyer for prosecution information and testimony. No pretense of fairness, freedom or privacy.

and

#15 Comment By olde reb On February 17, 2019 @ 11:48 pm

The 60 Minute interview with Andrew McCabe should resolve whether Trump is an instrument of the deep state or whether he has been forced to compromise his positions to curtail the incessant MSM/Wall Street obsession for impeachment.

DEVILS CHESSBOARD (Stephen Kinzer) and THE BROTHERS (David Talbot) each confirm that Wall Street utilized their old crony Allen Dulles to create the CIA so the nefarious acts of Wall Street such as starting WW I and WW II could be concealed from the public under a cloak of national security. John Perkins (CONFESSIONS OF ECONOMIC HIT MAN) identifies how Wall Street uses the IMF, World Bank, CIA, the US military, State Department and others to gain domination over foreign nations. William Blum in KILLING HOPE; CIA AND US MILITARY INTERVENTIONS compiles a voluminous list of nations that have been the target of Wall Street oppression. Douglas Valentine in CIA AS ORGANIZED CRIME concludes the Wall Street actions he has seen in foreign nations are now being seen in the United States. Robert Merry’s writing reveals the depth of Wall Street’s infiltration of the US government Justice Department. Cf. Michel Chossudovsky, GLOBALIZATION OF POVERTY AND THE NEW WORLD ORDER or GLOBALIZATION OF WAR.

The manner in which Wall Street has used the Federal Reserve to embezzle money from the US government to fund the above globalism agenda has been presented at [3]

The uproar that resulted from Ilham Omar’s mere mention that Israel influences actions by the US government/legislators which the AIPAC brags about doing—while the deep state has unsuccessfully been trying to nail Trump with the same charge for two years—should be conclusive proof of who wants to hide from public awareness.

#16 Comment By TheophilusPunuval On February 17, 2019 @ 11:50 pm

Everyone ready for the Second American Civil War? Here it comes, ready or not.

#17 Comment By The Village Atheist On February 18, 2019 @ 2:13 am

Man I hope there is a Deep State ready to save old Uncle Sam. The Stable Genius state is an absurdity, in a dangerous riddle, wrapped in a historic embarrassment. McCabe running the country instead of the Clown? You betcha!!

#18 Comment By Kenneth Almquist On February 18, 2019 @ 4:03 am

“[Merry’s] claim isn’t that they endeavoured to apply the 25th Amendment, his claim is that they were so thoroughly immersed in their fantasy (Narrative A) that they discussed applying a non-applicable process.”

Except that Merry provides zero evidence to support this claim.

There was public discussion of the possibility of removing Trump from office via the 25th Amendment, based on the question of whether the President Trump was incapable (for psychological reasons) of carrying out the duties of the office. I’ve included some links at the end of this comment.

We now know that Rosenstein and McCabe discussed the possibility of the 25th Amendment being invoked. It hardly makes sense that two people in the justice department would talk about the 25th Amendment without knowing what that amendment said. It makes much more sense to assume that they, just like everyone else who was discussing apply of the 25th Amendment to Trump, understood that the 25th Amendment was about removing the President on the grounds that the President was incapable of carrying out his duties.

In short, the claim that they were “discussed applying a non-applicable process” is an implausible claim based supported by no evidence whatsoever.

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#19 Comment By Kenneth Almquist On February 18, 2019 @ 5:12 am

The CBS interview with McCabe has now aired on CBS, and it turns out the premise of this piece is wrong. McCabe did not claim that “top law enforcement officials pondered how they might recruit Vice President Pence and a majority of cabinet members” to invoke the 25th Amendment.

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#20 Comment By wake On February 18, 2019 @ 9:36 am

“You can drill down into the details all you want, but the net effect of what the FBI did in the last presidential election was to give an unwarranted pass to Hillary’s real violations of the law ”

In the actual world we live in, FBI agents from the overwhelmingly Republican leaning FBI illegally leaked the Hillary investigations to the press, sometimes via Rudy Guliani. That cost Hillary the election.

The same FBI meanwhile properly kept quiet the many Trump investigations and crimes, handing the election to Trump.

#21 Comment By JD Armand On February 18, 2019 @ 10:26 am

This whole mess can be cleared up quickly and simply: US Citizen members of the Council of Foreign Relations, clearly an open conspiracy to undermine the US & our Constitution, by creating a ONE WORLD ORDER, should be indicted for treason, and tried. A few indictments and our deep state parasites may “flea” rapidly thereafter.

#22 Comment By JohnT On February 18, 2019 @ 11:31 am

Quite often one of the primary arguments from the “right” is our nation’s political problem would be resolved if only we would accept the fact the current President was duly elected. By that logic the following were not in and of themselves the problem, it was the citizen’s unwillingness to follow the law that was the problem: Omar al-Bashir, Denis Sassou Nguesso, Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, Robert Mugabe, Benito Mussolini and quite a slew of others.

#23 Comment By MM On February 18, 2019 @ 12:03 pm

Egypt: “Anyhow, a ‘discussion’ is hardly a coup.”

Tell that to everybody, typically on the left, who continue to trumphet Smedley Butler for exposing a “coup” (his words) against FDR back in the 1930s, which apparently amounted to no more than private discussions between individuals who weren’t even IN government.

#24 Comment By MM On February 18, 2019 @ 12:21 pm

JK: “It has been reported The Russians hacked both Democrat and Republican emails. If so, why haven’t Republican emails been released?”

Old news, and incorrct. The RNC had better cyber security than the DNC, but it was still hit, as were state and local GOP offices. However, any information hacked and released wasn’t recent or valuable, as Comey testified to before Congress.

One of Mueller’s indictments already confirmed all this last year, which pokes a hole in the collusion narrative:

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Educate yourself, sir.

#25 Comment By Connecticut Farmer On February 18, 2019 @ 12:24 pm

Soooo…it looks as though the Justice Department was (and apparently still is) trying to get rid of a sitting President because THEY are upset over the very thought of even considering the possibility that, whether we like ’em or not, it might be good form to at least try to make nice-nice with the second largest nuclear power on earth.

What do they call that kind of thing again?

#26 Comment By Connecticut Farmer On February 18, 2019 @ 12:28 pm

@Patricus

I made the mistake of holding my breath waiting for the same evidence. Nearly had to go to the ER. So don’t do what I did.

#27 Comment By Snowman On February 18, 2019 @ 12:47 pm

This article just might be the straw that broke the camel’s back in regards to my giving up on The American Conservative being a good alternative to other poor sources of news and opinion.

#28 Comment By MM On February 18, 2019 @ 12:58 pm

Egypt: “Any constitutional procedure is ipso facto constitutional.”

The impeachment and almost removal of Andrew Johnson would cast doubt on that premise.

The articles filed against him amounted to maladministration of an act of Congress that itself was later found to be unconstitutional. Congress even impeached him for giving speeches and “bringing disgrace” to the presidency, and other rubbish like that.

No mention of treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors there. I’ve heard some legal experts argue that Congress can impeach and remove the president for jaywalking if it wanted to.

Is that a constitutional act merely because the rules were followed?

#29 Comment By MM On February 18, 2019 @ 2:55 pm

Caught this from McCabe’s interview on 60 Minutes:

“I don’t know that we have ever seen in all of history an example of the number, the volume and the significance of the contacts between people in and around the president, his campaign, with our most serious, our existential international enemy: the government of Russia.”

Leaving aside the fact that Mr. McCabe apparently wasn’t concerned during the previous administration in which he worked, when former President Obama mocked his opponent in the 2012 campaign for calling Russia a threat to U.S. national security…

Has McCabe never heard of the FDR administration, which was rife with actual Soviet agents in numerous departments?

Even FDR’s closed and most trusted aide and confidante, Harry Hopkins, was implicated. And Hollywood actually produced a docu-drama at the White House’s insistence whitewashing the Soviet Union, including the Moscow Show Trials, all in the interests of the war effort. And all of this happening while a wartime ally was conducting extensive espionage in the U.S.

That historical example takes the cake for my money. Unfortunately, McCabe doesn’t seem to have ever read those books; he’s just interested in hyperbole in order to sell HIS book…

#30 Comment By Michelle On February 18, 2019 @ 5:14 pm

Nonsense. Unquestioning obedience to the President is the only duty of our career officials, no matter what country that President is actually working for.

I believe that’s called the “I was just following orders” defense.

#31 Comment By EliteCommInc. On February 18, 2019 @ 6:08 pm

“In the actual world we live in, FBI agents from the overwhelmingly Republican leaning FBI illegally leaked the Hillary investigations to the press, sometimes via Rudy Guliani. That cost Hillary the election.”

The FBI had no hand in:

support for needless interventions: Yemen. Syria. Libya. Irag. Afganistahn. Ukraine. No doubt Iran.

how she mishandled the Libyan embassy issue — worst blaming the embassy staff and seeking ways to use it politically as they were desperately seeking help —- unforgivable.

pow-wowing with the wealthy and calling large swaths of of the voting public names.

her hand in the crass response to Congressman Sanders

#32 Comment By William Fritz On February 18, 2019 @ 10:56 pm

“Now we have a report from a participant of those meetings that top officials of the country’s premier law enforcement entity sat around and pondered how to bring down a sitting president they didn’t like. ”
No, we don’t, that’s a lie. They pondered the danger that it might become necessary to invoke a constitutional amendment, and it was their job to investigate the evidence for that danger. Warmongers distort facts. Peacemakers don’t. Whose side y’all on?

#33 Comment By Luke On February 18, 2019 @ 11:42 pm

Apologies to the Soviet Union.

#34 Comment By Luke On February 19, 2019 @ 12:02 am

As a 8-yr veteran of the CIA I believe it. I know enough about it to know that America is not getting her money’s worth. What caught me off guard is how the FBI has been internally corrupted. And I lament the fact that, with a feckless Congress and wholesale obstruction against the President, nothing can be done about any of it.

#35 Comment By Craig in OH On February 19, 2019 @ 8:47 am

Perhaps someone can quote the part of the 25th amendment that gives the FBI the power to remove a sitting president?

It should be noted that there has been extensive discussion in the media, by many people outside the administration, as to whether Trumps behavior might reach a level of incoherence that would warrant removal using the 25th amendment. That might be viewed as a somewhat alarmist response by people who don’t have close access to the President.

What concerns me more is that career law enforcement people who do have closer access to the President would witness behavior by the President that is so contrary to the interests of the country that they would seriously wonder if he was fit to continue in that role.

#36 Comment By Ambrose Bierce On February 19, 2019 @ 10:46 am

The Deep State would have used more effective and clandestine methods.

#37 Comment By Elle On February 19, 2019 @ 2:09 pm

Old Reb–
It’s nice to hear one person confirm that there are those of us within the argument who read and study beyond the MSM narrative in searching for the truth. We do not wait in fear, angst and anticipation to be fed BS. We do not fit into either of the two extreme camps noted by this article but are squeezed into a silent vacuum by the sonic boom of these continually warring factions. The so-called news would have everyone believe that our country encompasses only two head-butting extremes. There’s profit, power and influence in that. But it’s a lie. A portion of the US population actually searches for truth with an eye toward finding and incorporating any/all new information discovered rather than denying/attacking what is found because we do not like it or because it doesn’t confirm our illusion.

(To the Author–This was a very well written article. Excellent use of the English language, sentence structure and vocabulary. Impressive, especially for the internet. Kudos to you, no matter what you write. I enjoyed reading your prose.)

#38 Comment By MM On February 19, 2019 @ 3:11 pm

Craig: “Perhaps someone can quote the part of the 25th amendment that gives the FBI the power to remove a sitting president?”

It does beg the question as to why these career bureacrats/lawyers were even discussing the possibility. They should know better, as it seems *harder* to remove a sitting president that way that a straightforward impeachement/removal effort.

The White House doctor already certified the President’s physical health, twice now I believe, so there’s no medical basis to support the argument. And the President also passed a Montreal Cognitive Assessment, so there’s no neurological basis to support the argument.

The pretense of invoking in the 25th Amendment in this case, as McCabe admitted, was due to Comey’s firing, which the independent IG’s report subsequently justified. That course of action is questionable at best. I can only imagine how liberals and progressives would be responding if the situation was ideologically reversed.

But the notion that this was all justified due to concerns that Trump was too cozy with Russia and there was evidence of collusion… you’d think that would’ve been leaked by now. I mean, the president’s phone calls and day calendars already have been. Instead, we’ve got Comey and McCabe hawking books and making contradictory statements vs. what they’ve said under oath before Congress, obstruction of justice for example.

It’s ironic really, given the arguments that Trump has to go due to contacts by some of his staff with unsavory foreign characters before the election.

We’ve got an example of a U.S. Senator, who’s been in the Senate for 25+ years, who has a much more friendly relationship with a hostile foreign power, who’s personally profited from that relationship, and who actually had a spy literally working in her office on behalf of said hostile foreign power.

But no Special Counsel has ever been appointed, nor ever will be appointed, to investigate Diane Feinstein for that laundry list of red flags…

#39 Comment By Connecticut Farmer On February 19, 2019 @ 4:24 pm

“But no Special Counsel has ever been appointed, nor ever will be appointed, to investigate Diane Feinstein for that laundry list of red flags…”

Absolutely. No more than a Special Counsel will ever be appointed to investigate the where Hillary CLinton’s emails disappeared to (China anyone?). Because, China isn’t the enemy. After all, Hillary etal said so.

They told us who the “real” enemy is—-Russia. Why, just now Putin might be in the process of massing eighty divisions of infantry supplemented by twenty armored divisions, untold amounts of artillery and God-knows-how-much in the way of fighter aircraft in preparation for annexing Poland, then crossing the Oder-Neisse line into Germany, down through through the Fulda Gap and on to the Low Countries and France. They can afford to do this because they rigged the election so a paid Russian agent could become POTUS.

Today Europe, tomorrow the world!

#40 Comment By anon On February 20, 2019 @ 11:21 am

1) POTUS was Constituionally and legally elected.
2) POTUS takes the oath to “…preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
3) POTUS proves to be “undisciplined,” and prone to lying.
4) POTUS’ own behavior gives rise to legitimate questions about his ability to fulfill his oath.

In this hypthetical situation, what *should* those who are likewise sworn to uphold the Constitution to do?

Discussing Constitutional remedies seems mild, quite far from the calls for a military coup we heard when Obama was POTUS.

#41 Comment By MM On February 20, 2019 @ 12:10 pm

CT Farmer: “No more than a Special Counsel will ever be appointed to investigate the where Hillary Clinton’s emails disappeared to.”

That’s an interesting point, as McCabe has claimed he supported a Special Counsel to probe Clinton’s illegal conduct.

Considering the FBI granted immunity to her staff for some of the same process crimes, and worse crimes, that Mueller has thrown the book at Trump associates for, I wonder what legal standard a Special Counsel would’ve held her to?

#42 Comment By EliteCommInc. On February 20, 2019 @ 8:20 pm

“3) POTUS proves to be “undisciplined,” and prone to lying.
4) POTUS’ own behavior gives rise to legitimate questions about his ability to fulfill his oath.”

Laughing.

You are of course kidding. I think it’s reasonable that considering our history of presidents, any discussion about this president’s ability should never have but barely trimmed the mind of anyone. Much less escaped their lips.

The idea, the suggestion is completely unreasonable and out of line.