Over the weekend, Sarah Sanders, John Kelly, and others drafted a statement that would have praised John McCain, given him plaudits for his military service, and called him a “hero.”
Donald Trump rejected it.
Even in moments like these, Donald Trump is still Donald Trump. He chose to tweet, instead, writing: “My deepest sympathies and respect go out to the family of Senator John McCain. Our hearts and prayers are with you!” On Instagram, Trump somehow managed to make himself the focal point of John McCain’s passing.
That’s about right for a man who once said that John McCain was “not a hero” because he was captured in Vietnam. Trump just cannot allow himself to be upstaged, although he must know that McCain has and will continue to receive the hero treatment after his death, as even liberals twist themselves into knots trying to show appreciation for his war efforts and his occasional efforts to cross the aisle without endorsing his policies.
When Trump passes, the world will offer the bare, obligatory minimum, but at least the world will provide the obligatory minimum, which is more than we can say of Donald Trump for John McCain.
He really is a petty, petty man.
But here’s the thing: If the Democrats can take back the House in November — still very much an if (please vote!) — Trump is going to wish that he weren’t President. There is a document currently being circulated among Republicans in Congress, which previews the investigations that the Democrats will likely launch should they take back the House. These are investigations that the GOP has been able to block for the last two years, which a Democratically-controlled House could finally move forward with. From Axios:
— President Trump’s tax returns
— Trump family businesses — and whether they comply with the Constitution’s emoluments clause, including the Chinese trademark grant to the Trump Organization
— Trump’s dealings with Russia, including the president’s preparation for his meeting with Vladimir Putin
— The payment to Stephanie Clifford — a.k.a. Stormy Daniels
— James Comey’s firing
— Trump’s firing of U.S. attorneys
— Trump’s proposed transgender ban for the military
— Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s business dealings
— White House staff’s personal email use
— Cabinet secretary travel, office expenses, and other misused perks
— Discussion of classified information at Mar-a-Lago
— Jared Kushner’s ethics law compliance
— Dismissal of members of the EPA board of scientific counselors
— The travel ban
— Family separation policy
— Hurricane response in Puerto Rico
— Election security and hacking attempts
— White House security clearances
Those are just some of the investigations among the 100 formal requests made by Democrats. As Axios notes, “these demands would turn the Trump White House into a 24/7 legal defense operation.”
Every single day will be about Trump scandals. Every single day will see a new Trump aide thrown under the bus, and keep in mind that many in the White House plan to leave after the midterms. Who is going to want to replace them? Who is going to want to replace Sarah Huckabee Sanders in that environment? As Trump watches his circle get smaller and smaller, as his aides are forced to resign — or worse, indicted — he’s going to pray for his own impeachment.
I hope the Democrats refuse him that mercy.
Speaking of which, we may not have to wait until the midterms to see Don Jr. indicted. Roger Stone believes the special counsel will soon indict him for lying to the FBI.