(Door Hugo Kijne te Hoboken USA)
It’s probably not going to happen, but if Donald Trump had his way he would appoint his favorite Fox News commentator, former judge Jeanine Pirro, to the Supreme Court. However, chances are that that would be too much even for the GOP senators who are paving the way for Trump’s modern fascism, although you never know. Thanks to Mitch McConnell’s bottomless hypocrisy the US is now facing a situation where a president who is a suspect in what might be a conspiracy case laced with obstruction of justice gets to shape the Supreme Court that may eventually judge him. Issues like ‘can the president be subpoenaed and indicted,’ and ‘can he pardon himself’ might very well make it to SCOTUS, as well as the question if co-conspirators pardoned by the president can be re-tried in state courts, or if that would be double jeopardy. Other issues that are hanging in the balance are Roe v. Wade, political gerrymandering, same sex marriage, affirmative action and the death penalty for minors and mentally disabled. Republicans expect their base to be energized for the midterm elections by a speedy appointment, while Democrats are taking inventory of their limited means to obstruct it.
Justice Kennedy’s resignation was a happy ending to a week that didn’t start too well for Trump. A judge ruled that all children who have been separated from their parents have to be reunited with them in 15-30 days, depending on the age of the child, something the Department of Health and Human Services is very unlikely to accomplish. Some children are lost, others know only their own name but not their family name, and many parents have already been deported. Exhibiting his ignorance of and disdain for the Constitution Trump argued that people crossing the border illegally should be summarily deported without due process. At a South Carolina rally he produced a tirade against the presence of a BMW plant that confused even his staunchest local followers, because it is common knowledge that BMW saved the state’s economy. Claiming to have powers that no president has ever had Trump declared that Harley Davidson, an American icon, should not be allowed to move some of its production to Europe to avoid retaliatory tariffs caused by Trump’s own tariff policies, and threatened the company with serious repercussions if the move would effectively take place.
Internationally Trump continues to do Putin’s bidding. At the G7 meeting he had already called NATO as bad as Nafta, and other members fear that he will use the upcoming meeting of the alliance to scold NATO before he travels off to meet Putin and give something important away. Apparently at the G7 meeting Trump tried to persuade French president Macron to leave the EU, and he seems now also ready to leave the WTO, which was created at the US’s intiative to protect American interests.
In today’s unstable political climate the Mueller probe is the wildcard. A review of Michael Cohen’s files and recordings has to be finished by July 5th, when the bulk of them will be turned over to prosecutors, which may prompt Trump’s fixer to flip. In DC Republicans tried to railroad Rod Rosenstein in a hearing, attempting to set up his and Mueller’s firing, but he gave back better than they had and they left bloodied.
Meanwhile the Supreme Court upheld Trump’s ban of entries from seven countries, five of them primarily Muslim, for national security reasons. It’s not a stretch that Trump might try to install a similar ban for entries from Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico, giving Sarah Sanders and Kirstjen Nielsen even more reasons to do their own cooking.
Ga HIER naar toe voor alle afleveringen