Wednesday, December 13, 2017

It’s Really All About Politics

Alabama's new Senator Doug Jones celebrating his victory last night
I often say that my political views lean conservative both socially and fiscally. I should add the word ‘mostly’ to that. I lean mostly conservative politically. The reason for my leaning socially conservative was dealt with a few days ago. To summarize, the values of social conservatism are based on biblical values - many of which are shared by Orthodox Jews and Evangelical Christians. Which is why for example both communities oppose government sanction of gay marriage .  

It is with this in mind that I view the victory of Doug Jones yesterday as a bittersweet one. Obviously, I am gratified that Roy Moore lost the election. If anyone epitomized the opposite of biblical values, it is a man about whom  Ivanka Trump said, ‘There is a special place in Hell for people who prey on children!’

I therefore congratulate Alabama’s Senator Elect, Doug Jones - and the people in Alabama who voted for him. It was the right decision.  A man of honor will now serve Alabama and the nation instead of a man of dishonor that defied the very values he preached.

But as noted, it was a bittersweet victory for those of us who value conservative social principles. Because in point of fact what Roy Moore preached was more in line with our views than what Doug Jones preaches. And as the President noted, his election will make passing conservative legislation all the more difficult. Republicans will now have one less vote to count on. Jones will surely vote in lockstep with Democrats on every issue as does the rest of his party in congress.

Although Moore lost for the right reasons, there is little doubt in my mind that Democrats exploited it more for their own liberal political purposes than they did for issues of morality that we constantly heard during the campaign.  I really believe that deep down, they are far happier about this win for political reasons than they are for moral ones.

And now – to further that political agenda a number of senators - all Democrats - are asking for an investigation into accusations of sexual misconduct by the President. It is informative that not a single Republican or even all Democrats have jumped on board with this. I see this in exactly the same light as the opposition to Roy Moore. It is political but uses Trump's sexual misconduct as their stated motive. They are taking advantage of the moment to try and upend the results of the last election whose electorate knew about all those accusations and voted for him anyway.

Not that I blame them. But I just think it ought to be clear what their real agenda is. I am reminded of a previous President who not only had credible accusations of sexual misconduct made against him, but had proof of it with an intern while in office... and lied about it until evidence proving it came forward.

Yes, he was impeached. But not because of what he did with that intern. He was impeached because he lied about it under oath during a deposition. Clinton was as hated by Republicans then as Trump is hated by Democrats now. Clinton stayed in office and is now one of the most honored ex-Presidents alive today. He asks and receives an over half million dollar fee for every speaking engagement.  

Where is the outrage from fellow Democrats? Both Clinton and Trump are immoral reprobates that are guilty of sexual misconduct who will lie about it and deny it until proven otherwise. But they are treated differently.

One might retort - What about Democrats Franken and Conyers? True - fellow Democrats asked for and got resignations form both. Now they can wrap themselves in righteousness by demanding from conservatives what they demanded from their own. 

But a senator and a congressman are minor players compared to a President. Besides Franken and Conyers were elected to office before any accusations were made. Had those accusations been known, they may never have gotten elected. In the case of Clinton and Trump - accusations were well known before the election. And they were both elected anyway.

It is obvious to me that this entire episode is political - using their righteous indignation (legitimate though it may be) as the engine by which to move their political agenda forward.

Which brings me to the Mueller investigation of whether Trump and company colluded with Russia to fix the election. It is also becoming more obvious that this too is political. At least 2 of Mueller’s investigators were Trump haters. That became clear from multiple e-mails bashing Trump discovered by a Justice Department investigation of Hillary Clinton’s campaign. 

So far the Mueller investigation has produced little of substance against Trump despite the clear anti Trump prejudice by some of their investigators. True they no longer work for the committee. But it surely casts suspicions on any conclusion they might reach about Trump that is based on investigations tainted with anti Trump bias. 

For purposes of my conservative leaning approach, it won’t matter much if Trump leaves office. I don’t think he will. Either voluntarily or forcibly. I continue to believe that Mueller will not find anything damaging enough to the President to get him impeached and removed from office. But if it does happen, his replacement, Mike Pence, will  be even better because he is real conservative. One that will not have any of the baggage that Trump has.  So for conservatives it is win/win either way.