Gingrich’s statement that wealth trumps the rule of law

Ok so it turns out there’s a fix – if you’re worried that Trump’s many profit-seeking ventures might conflict with his ability to do the presidenting well, just change the rules to make it so that they can’t. Yeah. By the same token, can we change the rules so that it’s ok for me to rob banks?

Newt Gingrich has a take on how Donald Trump can keep from running afoul of U.S. ethics laws: Change the ethics laws.

Gingrich, the former speaker of the House and one-time potential running mate for Trump, says Trump should push Congress for legislation that accounts for a billionaire businessman in the White House.

“We’ve never seen this kind of wealth in the White House, and so traditional rules don’t work,” Gingrich said Monday during an appearance on NPR’s “The Diane Rehm Show” about the president-elect’s business interests. “We’re going to have to think up a whole new approach.”

Ah, I see. So the “traditional rules” were there to cover people who don’t have financial conflicts of interest, and when there is someone who does have financial conflicts of interest, then obviously it’s time to change the rules. I hadn’t realized that. I thought the point of the rules was to avoid financial conflicts of interest, and thus are more needed, not less, when there are giant conflicts at every turn. Silly me.

And should someone in the Trump administration cross the line, Gingrich has a potential answer for that too.

“In the case of the president, he has a broad ability to organize the White House the way he wants to. He also has, frankly, the power of the pardon,” Gingrich said. “It’s a totally open power. He could simply say, ‘Look, I want them to be my advisers. I pardon them if anyone finds them to have behaved against the rules. Period. Technically, under the Constitution, he has that level of authority.”

And that would be the perfect solution in every way. It wouldn’t be or appear at all autocratic or dictatorial, nor would it appear or be the least bit corrupt. It would be fabulous to have a president milking the office for every dollar he could – it makes me proud to think of it.

“Speaker Gingrich’s statement that wealth trumps the rule of law, basically that’s what he was saying, is jaw-dropping,” added American University government professor James Thurber. “I can’t believe it. He’s a historian. He should also know that we did not want to have a king. A king in this case is somebody with a lot of money who cannot abide by the rule of law.”

Richard Painter, a former George W. Bush White House ethics lawyer, said Gingrich was off on his reading of the Constitution. “If the pardon power allows that, the pardon power allows the president to become a dictator, and even Richard Nixon had the decency to wait for his successor to hand out the pardon that he received for his illegal conduct,” Painter said. “We’re going down a very, very treacherous path if we go with what Speaker Gingrich is saying, what he is suggesting.”

A dictator is what we have. Trump will be as much of a dictator as he can. He’s not the least bit shy about it, and he’s not constrained by respect for US history or traditions or by any kind of moral scruples. He’s the self-declared pussygrabber, and he basically sees the whole world and everything in it as his pussy to grab.

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