Screened for their loyalty to Trump

Apparently Amy Siskind does a weekly list of things to keep an eye on in Life Under Trump. The one she did for last week has 105 items on it. 105 items! That’s a full-time job. I’m finding a lot I missed. Hoping to track down some of the more startling ones – like # 9:

9. NY Magazine reported that candidates for FBI director were being screened for their loyalty to Trump.

What? But according to Sally Yates the DoJ is supposed to operate completely independently of the Executive Branch…although how that is possible when the executive chooses the top people I don’t know. Our supposed “checks and balances” aren’t.

So here is NY mag on that subject a week ago:

Last week, Donald Trump fired James Comey because the FBI director had lost the trust of the American peopleand because he refused to comport himself as the president’s private detective. According to Comey’s confidantes, Trump asked his FBI director to pledge personal loyalty to him, seven days into his presidency. According to Trump, he was thinking about how much he despised the FBI’s investigation into his campaign when he “decided to just [fire Comey].”

These developments have led some to wonder if the Trump administration might be less-than-wholeheartedly committed to the independence of federal law enforcement. Democrats have responded to such concerns by calling for concrete actions to safeguard the independence of the probe into Trump’s campaign. Meanwhile some Republicans have issued statements assuring the American people that they are deeply concerned and principled (and not committed to doing anything, in particular).

This is what I’m saying. Checks and balances – what checks and balances? They’re not working.

Over the weekend, the White House demonstrated just how seriously it takes concerns about the erosion of public trust: To quell bipartisan fears about the politicization of the FBI, Attorney General Jeff Sessions — who had recused himself from all matters pertaining to the investigation of the Trump campaign (of which he was a member) — interviewed a sitting GOP Senator for the position of FBI director (and thus, for the role of leading the investigation into the Trump campaign).

That senator was Texas’s John Cornyn, a man so invested in an impartial investigation into the Trump campaign’s Russia ties, he didn’t ask a single question about that subject at last week’s Senate hearing with James Clapper and former acting attorney general Sally Yates. Instead, Cornyn devoted the entirety of his speaking time to echoing the Trump administration’s concerns about leaks, “unmasking,” the imaginary Susan Rice scandal, and Yates’s traitorous refusal to defend the president’s quasi-Muslim ban.

The Justice Department also interviewed former Republican congressman Mike Rogers for the position. Rogers served as an FBI special agent before leaving the bureau to enter politics in 1995. He held a House seat from 2001 to 2014. On Saturday, Rogers won the endorsement of the FBI Agents Association.

It’s hopeless.

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