The Ignorance Excuse — How it Disqualifies This Sham Presidency

This idea that the President gets a pass because he’s “new at this,” just NO.

Here’s how it works:

Trump probably knows you’re not supposed to do this. Here’s how we know: he prattled on and on from the campaign trail about how inappropriate Bill Clinton’s meeting with Loretta Lynch was.

But let’s accept, for argument’s sake, that he doesn’t know how it works. Here is the problem: that means that we have a chief executive who is so lazy, who is so incurious, who is so arrogant that he simply cannot serve as President of the United States. His excuse cannot simply be that he is ignorant of what he can and cannot do as the chief executive. This excuse inherently includes the admission that he refuses to listen to anyone around him who could stop him from violating the rules around something important, like, say, obstruction of justice.

What this all means is that he either refuses to hire people to guide him where he needs guidance, out of an arrogant belief that he and his kleptocrat family can do this all on his own, or that he has hired these people, and that he is congenitally incapable of listening to these people’s counsel, whether out of inadequacy of attention span or arrogant refusal to listen.

But it’s all a continuance of the shame of the campaign season. Grabbing women by the pussy was just locker room talk. Chris Christie signaled the redeployment of this defense strategy on Wednesday afternoon: “it’s just New York talk.” That has morphed easily into this just being the actions of someone “used to business in New York” and Paul Ryan’s “well, he’s new at this being President thing.”

None of this can get around a fundamental issue that is non-negotiable. Our system of government cannot function with a chief executive who operates in this fashion. Ignorance is not an excuse (it almost never is in our system of laws, and for good reason). It’s illegal/obstruction of justice for a reason. And we can’t have an obstructor in chief who will undoubtedly continue to argue for special standards for the ignorant and congenitally deficient.

As to the question of who to trust — Comey or this Administration, the record is clear. Members of the Trump Admin have 1) lied repeatedly about their meetings with Russians. So curious. They 2) lied about their reason for firing James Comey. Which just happened to be a diversion from Russia being the reason to fire Comey. So curious. They 3) lied about Comey’s standing at the FBI — a lie shown out by the physical presence of FBI employees who, on their own time, made sure to show at yesterday’s hearings. They lied about an FBI in disarray, when, in fact, it was an FBI diligently pursuing the question of what the connections are between the Trump Campaign/Administration and… Russia. So curious.

In summary, this man is incapable of serving as the Chief Executive, whether because of his congenital dishonesty, his congenital arrogance, his congenital inability to act on advice of experienced counsel, or his unwillingness to accept the limitations placed on the office of the Chief Executive that divide democracy from tyranny.

Trump can accept that the job is too complicated and hard for him and step down and save us all the time and trouble of impeaching him. Or he can subject himself to the revenge of our system of laws, which will force this petty tyrant in waiting out of his perch. Of course, the question of the Russian connections will still have to be explored, because, you know, they’re all… so curious. But ignorance is not an excuse. Instead, it’s an unwitting condemnation from a coward like Paul Ryan who would see our system of government and laws laid prostrate because he, too, is congenitally defective — he loves power more than America and he is too smug and glib to examine the deep flaws within Paul Ryan — a similarly deficient man.