Highest standard: Week 2

Reminder: we’ve made the choice who the president elect is.  It’s now time to hold him to the highest standard as we do for all presidents.  This is explicitly intended to be a nonpartisan post.  If you disagree with something I’ve written here or think it’s slanted, I’m genuinely curious why; please take the time to comment!

Since week 1, a few concerns remain unchanged:

  1. No tax returns released.  Unprecedented in modern politics, has to be made right.
  2. Operators of blind trust are members of transition team, creating clear conflict of interest.  Unprecedented in modern politics.
  3. Appointment of Stephen Bannon as Chief of Strategy, who’s explicitly created a platform for “alt-right” and has published Antisemitic, racist, and misogynist content.  This is not a nomination to unite the country.  Hard to understand anyone of high character having a person like this as adviser.
  4. Appointment of children as operators of “blind trust”.  Hard to understand how business will be operated “blindly”.  Not illegal for president and vice president, but would be illegal for lower-level officials in executive branch.

One concern was resolved:

  1. Settled fraud lawsuits around Trump University (note, promised not to settle while campaigning).  There will probably be “no admission of guilt”.  Unprecedented in modern politics.

And several more issues arose:

  1. Reported to be seeking security clearance for son-in-law to be made an adviser.  This would be actually illegal.
  2. Evidence of personally operating on behalf of existing businesses and may be using PEOTUS status on their behalf.  This is unprecedented and ethically a gray area but probably not illegal.  If done as POTUS, it would be actually illegal.
  3. Calls with heads of state on unsecured private cell phone.  At best careless.  And if the phone is android as evidence suggests, it’s quite possible that domestic, foreign, and/or private agencies could have recordings.
  4. Senior and experienced members of transition team purged over what might have been a 10-year-old personal vendetta.  Not high character.
  5. Off-the-record meeting with press to “rip them new assholes” over reporting.  Dangerous precedent to be setting.
  6. Fabricated claim to have saved Ford plant from moving to Mexico.  Hard not to call this carefully crafted domestic propaganda.
  7. Ongoing personal feud with major newspaper.  Not high character.

As an editorial aside, I’m surprised with how brazenly the president-elect is behaving, it’s happening very fast.  We’re going to have to be vigilant in not growing tired of these reports and normalizing failure to operate by the highest standard.

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