A new president is supposed to enjoy a “honeymoon” of good will and support from the press and public after he assumes the office once held by George Washington. But Donald Trump and his Cabinet nominees are receiving what can only be described as a hazing without precedent in recent American history.
Rep. John Lewis (D-GA), a member of Congress for more than 30 years, has received inordinate attention for his irresponsible declaration that “I don’t see this president-elect as a legitimate president.” We’re told he’s a “civil rights icon,” but in his 30 years in Congress John Lewis cast more than 100 votes against legislation to protect the civil rights of unborn children.
Lewis is one of more than 38 Democratic Congressmen who announced their intention to boycott the presidential inauguration this year. Their boycott has been joined by an assortment of celebrities from Hollywood and the music industry, such as Elton John and Celine Dion, who declined invitations to perform at inaugural-related events.
One of the boycotters is the Italian opera singer Andrea Bocelli, who decided not to perform at Donald Trump’s inauguration ceremony after “Boycott Bocelli” appeared up on social media and the blind tenor decided he was “getting too much heat.” Trump, who once hosted an evening with Bocelli at his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida, said, “It’s sad people on the left kept him from performing on a historic day.”
Another singing star, Jennifer Holliday, reneged on her commitment to perform, saying: “I sincerely apologize for my lapse of judgment and for causing such dismay and heartbreak to my fans.” She and her family reported receiving anonymous death threats from fans feigning outrage that she would use her talent to honor our new president.
Another no-show is the singer Beyoncé Knowles, who was caught lip-syncing “The Star Spangled Banner” to pre-recorded accompaniment at the last presidential inauguration in 2013. Beyoncé’s faked performance was a closely guarded secret until someone noticed that the superb musicians in the U.S. Marine Band were merely pretending to play their instruments while the band’s director, Col. Michael Colburn, was energetically pretending to conduct them.
An anti-Trump boycott was declared against the L.L. Bean catalog store merely because Linda Bean, a granddaughter of the founder and one of 50 family members who co-own the company, had supported Trump. Linda Bean courageously protested the “bullying” campaign against her which would injure the company’s 9,000 employees.
When asked to justify his statement that Trump is not “a legitimate president,” Rep. John Lewis claimed there was “a conspiracy on the part of the Russians and others to help him get elected.” Lewis’s conspiracy theory was ironic to conservatives who were accused of “McCarthyism” whenever they warned about the dangers of Communism.
During the Cold War, there really was a worldwide conspiracy based in Moscow in which Soviet Communists manipulated liberal fellow travelers and other “useful idiots” to subvert the American way of life. Communism collapsed in Russia 25 years ago, but four years ago President Obama influenced the presidential election by concealing his planned appeasement of Putin.
While running for reelection in 2012, President Obama told Putin’s puppet president Medvedev: “On all these issues, but particularly missile defense, it’s important for him (Putin) to give me space. After my election I have more flexibility” — to which Medvedev replied in English, “I understand. I will transmit this information to Vladimir.”
Once he was safely reelected, in March 2013 Obama cancelled plans to build missile defense interceptors in Poland. Obama’s decision gave Putin exactly what he wanted and effectively ended President Reagan’s vision of strategic defense against Russia’s dangerous nuclear-armed ICBMs.
The hazing of the new administration goes beyond Trump himself, who often fights back on Twitter, and extends to nominees for Cabinet positions. First up was Rex Tillerson, Trump’s nominee for Secretary of State.
Democratic Senator Chris Coons of Delaware asked Tillerson to support the Law of the Sea Treaty, which the U.S. Senate has refused to ratify for the last 34 years. Mr. Tillerson wisely disavowed his previous support for the treaty “in a different role” as CEO of Exxon Mobil, saying that in his new role in the Trump administration, “I acknowledge the concerns people have about subjecting any of our activities to international courts.”
The Democrats’ obsession with “climate change” consumed much time in the hearings, as the new California Senator Kamala Harris berated the nominee for CIA director to say that he believed in it. She also asked Mike Pompeo to commit that his “personal views” on “the importance of having a traditional family structure for raising children will not impact internal policies at the CIA.”
Not to be outdone, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren demanded of Dr. Ben Carson, “What other actions will you take to adapt to or prevent climate change while you are HUD Secretary?” Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown asked Dr. Carson if he believes that “HUD has a duty to provide housing opportunities for LGBTQ people.”
John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) whose 27th book, The Conservative Case for Trump, was published posthumously on September 6.