The NYT reports that FBI Director James Comey wrote memos after his private discussions with Trump. One of the memos provides a record of Trump asking Comey to "go easy" on Michael Flynn. FBI memos of events are usually regarded as statements of fact in a court of law. The implication is that Trump may be guilty of the obstruction of justice. It also suggests that Trump fired Comey because he refused Trump's request that he take a pledge of loyalty to him, which is confirmed in a separate Comey memo.
This Washington Post editorial puts pressure on Republican leaders to call for a special prosecutor to investigate Trump's apparent efforts to obstruct justice. They have to decide how they can minimize the damage to their party after these revelations. A prominent conservative journalist for the NYT even suggested that the 25th Amendment should be used to remove Trump from office. A president can be removed from office without going through impeachment proceedings if 2/3 of cabinet members claim that a president is not fit to carry out the duties of the office. He makes a claim that others have made after observing Trump's campaign and his performance in office. Ross Douthat has concluded that Trump has demonstrated incompetence as a manager of the Executive branch. He echoes a point that I have made in previous posts. If a corporate CEO mismanaged a company, in the ways that Trump has mismanaged his presidency, he would have been fired. We should not have to wait four years to remove an incompetent president. That will not happen, but Trump will not easily escape from the trap that he set for himself. The dam of support from Republican leaders has been leaking. The Comey episode may be the beginning of the end. Senior Republican senator John McCain said that Trump's scandals are reaching Watergate levels and scale. He does not support appointing a special prosecutor just yet but his advice to Trump will not be followed. He must have kidding when he suggested that Trump should just get everything out in the open. He might of well have asked him to get rid of his wig.
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