Byron York is the Chief Political Correspondent for the Washington Examiner. Well-connected on Capitol Hill and in the White House, he writes some of the best and most insightful political commentary these days. His articles can be found at this weblink. I particularly like his thoughtful piece that questions whether the intelligence community will interfere in the 2020 election:
Recently, the intelligence community made clear it will be a player in the 2020 presidential election. No one should be surprised.
On Feb. 13, the House Intelligence Committee held a meeting at which intelligence officials briefed lawmakers on foreign efforts to influence U.S. elections. By several accounts, the officials told the committee that Russia is working to reelect President Trump.
The intelligence community works for the president. Yet, officials chose to brief Schiff’s House Intelligence Committee on this extraordinarily consequential finding before telling the president.
Whatever the motive, spilling the beans in a room with dozens of people present — intelligence officials brought a lot of staff with them — increased the chances of precisely the type of leak that occurred.
And of course, that IC briefing was leaked and spun by Democrats to their political advantage before the essence of it was debunked after a few news cycles. That is the type of investigative reporting and political analysis that is York’s specialty.
Recently he was interviewed by Lou Dobbs on a variety of topics related to the conduct of the US Senate, including the attack by Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on two sitting Supreme Court justices and also about Lindsey Graham’s (R-SC) failure to DO ANYTHING. Here is some of the Q&A:
Dobbs: Let’s start with Chuck Schumer making these inexplicable and ignorant threats against sitting justices of the Supreme Court.
York: Well, you were right about it being inexplicable since Schumer is the Minority Leader now, but for years he was a stalwart on the Senate Judiciary Committee where his role in life was to try to block Republican-appointed judges. But he’s very familiar with this … he’s a long-time veteran of this … and to say something like this so openly threatening is just jaw-dropping. Now, there’s really nothing to complain about when the Chief Justice points this out because the Chief Justice has in the past criticized President Trump when he thought President Trump was suggesting that justices “are political” – imagine that. The Chief Justice did push back on President Trump on that, so it was entirely proper for him to [push back on Schumer].
Dobbs: His remarks aren’t at issue here; the thuggish, asinine, ignorant remarks of Schumer are. I have to tell you there is an odor in this town, this swamp. This is just bizarre to me to see this kind of conduct from Schumer against two sitting justices. It’s a new low for the “party of hate” that the Democrats have become.
York: Particularly bizarre when you look at the anti-Trump elements of not just the Democrat Party but also some former conservatives who talk about the President violating norms in Washington, or the President not respecting the rule of law. And now you have the Senate Minority Leader threatening – it sounds like physically threatening – two Supreme Court justices if they rule against him. Was it a death threat, or was it a brush-back pitch? It was clearly wanting to stake out some territory … on abortion …
Dobbs: There is an impulse in this town, this swamp, to minimize the threats of the Left, and they make them continuously, and it’s getting worse, and it’s getting louder, and they have assaulted a president of the United States for the last three and a half years. They’ve corrupted government to do so. After three years of investigation, whether it be in the impeachment inquire/farce led by Adam Schiff, or whether it be the special counsel led by – ostensibly – Robert Mueller … I mean the only people in question emerge as the investigators themselves.
York: Let me tell you about the world’s greatest deliberative body, a/k/a the US Senate. It is a rough and violent place. They talk with such manners about “my good friend, the gentleman from (this state),” but if they get a chance … and the President has nominated someone … and they see they can get a scalp … they’ll get it in an instant.
Dobbs: I guess the [answer] would be “reciprocate first.” Let’s talk about the august Senate and Lindsey Graham (R-SC). … Graham was saying that he cannot go along with Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) in seeking to reform FISA, and he wants a little time to be deliberative. At what point is there going to be an accountability quotient in this town that smacks of anything like real justice?
York: A lot of Republicans are frustrated with Lindsey Graham. Obviously, Devin Nunes and other Republicans in the House lost power as of January 2019, but Lindsey Graham is the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee …
Dobbs: Correct the following statement if I’m wrong. He hasn’t done a damn thing as the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, promising all the while that he would be investigating the investigators. That he will be pursuing truth, justice, and the American way. He is an absolute non-entity.
York: And his predecessor Charles Grassley WAS doing that [investigating], and one of the things that Devin Nunes found out in investigating what the FBI did against the Trump campaign, Grassley found out [some things] independently … and it actually helped the credibility of the whole thing … none of that appears to be going on now.
End of the Q&A. Key points made include:
- Schumer’s diatribe shocked even York, who’s probably seen or heard it all in DC, and the Democrats are coming unglued
- The Democrats are complete hypocrites for claiming that President Trump “doesn’t uphold the rule of law,” yet they blatantly attack two sitting justices [likely a crime, too]
- Chief Justice was right to immediately call out Schumer for his blatant attacks on two sitting justices
- The Senate’s own rules for decorum are a farce; they will attack anyone if they think they can get a “political scalp”
- Republicans in the Senate and House are frustrated that Lindsey Graham has done nothing
- Chuck Grassly, who was Graham’s predecessor as Judiciary Committee Chairman, demonstrated the value of Senate investigations by adding independent information about FBI FISA abuse, yet Graham continues to do nothing
Will the Senate have the guts to censure Schumer as they rightfully should? Will Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) light a fire under Graham to start real investigations? These are questions that Americans need to see answered in the affirmative, and damn soon.