What is it about our esteemed Senator that compels one to offer rebuke? How I crave to continue to like and support this guy. I remember the man who was a stake president and principal of Bain in Boston. I remember the hero on a white horse who saved the Utah Olympics. I resonate with the man who has been a poster child for the values so many Utahans hold dear. I cannot let go of the impression that Senator Romney is a good and principled person. But when it comes to national politics, I am repeatedly confused by what he says. His latest tit-for-tat with President Trump is a prime example.
Recently Trump fired two inspector generals, one over the Coronavirus stimulus package (where did all that money go again?), but primarily Steve Linick, an Obama appointed Inspector General over the State Department. Pertaining to these actions Romney tweeted: “The firings of multiple Inspectors General is unprecedented; doing so without good cause chills the independence essential to their purpose. It is a threat to accountable democracy and a fissure in the constitutional balance of power”. Trump’s response was simple, he tweeted back “Loser” in capital letters. If this was not so chuckle-worthy one might cringe more at the adolescent and un-presidential nature of the whole affair. These two will obviously never get along.
But as to the nature of Romney’s comments, they are in principle incorrect. Let us keep in mind that in the D.C. swamp, there is no deeper bog than the State Department. If one were to assume that the swamp needed to be drained, the State Department would be the first place to start. Good cause indeed, and as a sitting Senator, Mr. Romney might want to familiarize himself with more of the abusive and corrupt bureaucracy that he, Trump, and anyone who deigns to represent the people should be concerned. A brief review of recent State Department history suggests good riddance to Linick and probably many others.
This is, after all, the same State Department that looked the other way as their head Hillary Clinton funneled $143 million into her foundation coffers while selling twenty percent of our uranium reserves to Uranium One, a Putin controlled enterprise. Or the same group that could not see any problem with Clinton destroying 33,000 emails and her servers kept illegally off-site in one of the biggest cover-ups in history.
This is the same organization that defined the death of several Americans in Benghazi as “a local uprising” while refusing the besieged participants any help. And with American blood still wet on their hands, the same group that then sent Hillary Clinton and Susan Rice on a national propaganda tour spinning a lie about a fictional reaction to a video.
This is the same State Department that will harass and fire employees for putting a picture of Trump in their office. Many employees still have a picture of Obama in their offices and make it uncomfortable for anyone to show loyalty to the current administration, their de facto employers. The same State Department that negotiated backroom deals across the globe, only to later renege on many of them. The same department that has degraded the name and reputation of the United States for years.
Whistleblowers like Monika Wesolowski get harassed or fired for pointing out improprieties in the Department. If one decries corruption in State Department leadership, the corruption never seems to be investigated and the whistleblower faces rebuke. In just one example, in 2015 Director of Counterterrorism Daniel Rosen was arrested by local police for soliciting a minor. An investigation by authorities revealed a long history of inappropriate behavior with underage children. How did that escape the eyes of Department superiors responsible for such oversight?
In short, Trump’s actions seem to be completely justified. There is no “threat to accountable democracy” if you get rid of people who are exercising ineffective and selective accountability while the inmates run amok. The State Department has been corrupt for decades. Linick’s firing should be one of many to follow if any real change is expected. Frankly, without a mass cleansing of the resistant and overreaching bureaucracy in Washington nothing much will change and we will continue to be buffeted by unelected bureaucrats. As a dismayed constituent, I would like to see my Senator confront a little more of that reality than criticize someone who is at least trying to do something to address it.