First of all, this is not a game.
Reasonable people can disagree about President Trump’s firing today of FBI Director James Comey. That is, if you can find reasonable people.
My first thought when I heard the news: Firing Comey is actually something Democrats wanted, but they didn’t want President Trump to do it.
My second thought was, had events gone differently last year, Mr. Comey would’ve served until retirement, at which time Republicans and Democrats would’ve sung his praises and named something big and expensive after him. Instead, a bright and distinguished career ends sadly.
My third thought: President Hillary Clinton would probably have gotten rid of him, too, obsessed as she is with October 28th.
Needless to say, all the D.C. Democrats are issuing dire proclamations of “emergency” and “crisis”. If this was a movie, it would be “Apocalypse Right Now”. Do they realize their hyperbole tank is running low, what with millions of us dying from the House healthcare bill that isn’t even law and never will be?
So, here’s how it looks to me, right now:
If the President really is firing Comey for mishandling the Clinton email probe, that mishandling predates both his election and transition. We knew it in July 2016. This is May 2017. Why didn’t he tell or ask Comey to step down during the transition? He has to know that to do it now invites conspiracy theories about Comey “getting too close to the truth”, etc., etc.
It’s a tough sell, Team Trump, even though I think the job got the better of Mr. Comey, for whom I once had high hopes. At best, the Director blew the Clinton case. At worst, he hoped to help her. Either way, it’s bad.
In fairness to the Democrats, the Comey firing isn’t playing so great with Republicans either: Freedom Caucus Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) is among those calling for a commission to investigate Russia’s involvement in our politics. He calls Trump’s move “bizarre”. Others are “troubled”. On the other hand, the usually anti-Trump Susan Collins of Maine finds herself wholeheartedly backing the firing: “The President didn’t fire the whole FBI; he fired the director”, adding that the agency, and her Senate Intelligence Committee will keep investigating to “follow the evidence wherever it leads”.
Strange bedfellows, once again, and we’re just at the beginning here.
Remember, firing Comey also frees Comey: the next time he testifies, he may have more to say.
Two more quick points:
The use of the word “Nixonian” is ignorant: Nixon didn’t fire his FBI Director. You could say “Clintonian”, since President Clinton did fire William Sessions in 1993.
And, while we’re on the subject of history, I’ll tell you what’s worse than Trump firing Comey.
It’s the fact that J.Edgar Hoover ran the FBI for nearly half a century, was guilty of much worse malfeasance and Machiavellian maneuvering that Comey or Trump ever dreamed of, and yet…Hoover was never fired. He died in office in 1972.
You know why?
He couldn’t be fired: he had the goods on every president from Roosevelt to Nixon and let them know it in ways subtle and unsubtle. He owned presidents.
Hoover’s self-perpetuating dictatorship and “indispensability” was a much graver abuse and threat to freedom that anything that has followed.