Under a blunt headline reading “What is wrong with these people?” conservative Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin tore into the abusive culture President Donald Trump has brought to the White House, in light of the appalling comments made by Trump aide Kelly Sadler.
As reported on Thursday, White House Communications official Sadler made a joke about Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) “dying,” which created a firestorm for the administration which has only responded with a statement praising McCain — but not addressing the “joke.”
According to Rubin, “Within the last 24 hours: Fox Business guest Ret. Air Force Lt. Gen. Thomas McInerney (a birther and notorious crackpot) declares, “The fact is, is John McCain, [torture] worked on John. That’s why they call him ‘Songbird John’”; White House aide Kelly Sadler says aloud at a White House meeting that McCain’s opposition to CIA nominee Gina Haspel doesn’t matter because he is “dying anyway”; and White House chief of staff John F. Kelly, who has not fired Sadler, unleashes a bigoted, ignorant rant against immigrants.”
“One could imagine President Trump saying very similar things in private or even in public,” she continued. “Kelly’s boss, who does not want black and brown people from ‘shithole’ countries, would no doubt applaud Kelly’s comments. Trump has yet to apologize for ridiculing McCain’s status as a POW during the campaign. Fox News’s business model is built on promoting crackpot ideas and airing hateful rhetoric that feed the anger and resentment of its base. That means tearing down genuine heroes who challenge the Great Leader Trump. They are utterly comfortable voicing obnoxious slurs, revealing a stunning lack of human decency. They are superstars in the right-wing ecosystem, not in spite of their crass, bigoted views, but because of them.”
Rubin went on to say that nothing that comes out of the Trump White House should surprise anyone anymore, due to the culture he not only brought with him, but continues to nurture.
“This is the political culture blessed and cheered on by evangelical leaders — for whom nothing Trump or his cronies do (be it paying hush money to a porn star or slandering a POW or endorsing an alleged child molester) is over the line,” she wrote. “There is something dark and twisted at the core of the Trumpian political movement and philosophy (if you can call it that). You don’t get criticized, let alone fired, for perpetuating hurtful conspiracy theories (about Seth Rich’s death, President Obama’s birth certificate or McCain’s captivity) or for voicing hateful views.”
“In short, not all of Trump’s followers and enablers are bad people, but in the Trump universe, bad people sure do flourish,” she concluded.
You can read the whole piece here.