If you followed yesterday’s news you saw Donald Trump embarrass himself on national television with probably the most blatant lie he’s told this week, about being the most transparent president in history who doesn’t do cover-ups. You probably responded with either outrage that he’s lying so shamelessly and using it as a lever against political opposition, or you were amused by his pathetic attempts to save face and inability to deal with reality. Many even compared it to Richard Nixon’s infamous declaration: “I am not a crook,” shortly before he was brought down by Watergate.
There’s a much darker undertone to this claim – and Trump’s hostility to oversight in any form. He’s making it sound as if his tax returns and the Russia probe are the only things being investigated by this Congress, and all too often, the media makes it seem as if these are the only battles Trump is fighting – since the highlighting of personal conflict in news stories tends to work well for ratings. This is why we were treated to months of Donald Trump vs lifelong public servant Robert Mueller on TV.
In reality, House Democrats are opening other significant inquiries that have nothing to do with Russia. Investigating the deaths of six detained immigrant children is one particularly significant and growing inquiry. If Donald Trump and his corrupt administration wanted there to be any truth to Wednesday’s outlandish statements, they could have at least responded to the requests from multiple committees. Instead, the administration is choosing to ignore these requests as well, leading Congressman Joaquin Castro to admonish House Republicans for their silence, which he calls “a tacit acceptance of the Trump administration’s inhumane border policy.”
Republicans are at a crossroads: They can lose support for their own campaigns by supporting this draconian border policy, or face the wrath of Donald Trump’s racist base by openly condemning it. It is only by speaking out against this injustice, however, that they are not playing politics with people’s lives.
James Sullivan is the assistant editor of Brain World Magazine and an advocate of science-based policy making