We are coming dangerously close to a king-like presidency that operates outside of the law: Charles Blow
New York Times columnist Charles Blow (Photo: Screen capture)

New York Times columnist Charles Blow is warning of an imperialist presidency taking over the United States.

"We watch daily as the constitutional and conventional fabric of this country is clawed at and unraveled by Donald Trump, while those with any power to prevent or punish his actions are suspended in a state of listlessness, making political calculations rather than performing constitutional duty," Blow wrote Sunday.

He said that it's clear Trump is inches from turning his leadership into an imperial presidency that operates outside of the rule of law.

"There is no doubt whatsoever that Trump broke the law by obstructing justice, as he sought to end investigations into him, his campaign and his administration," wrote Blow. "The Mueller report makes that abundantly clear. Special Counsel Robert Mueller refused to state declaratively that Trump committed a crime because of Department of Justice guidelines issued by the Office of Legal Counsel that are against indicting a sitting president."

Quoting the Mueller report, Blow noted that no president has immunity once leaving office.

“And if individuals other than the President committed an obstruction offense, they may be prosecuted at this time. Given those considerations, the facts known to us, and the strong public interest in safeguarding the integrity of the criminal justice system, we conducted a thorough factual investigation in order to preserve the evidence when memories were fresh and documentary materials were available,” the report said.

This week, 800 former federal prosecutors explained that Trump should clearly be prosecuted for obstruction of justice.

"That leaves the option of action up to Congress, the only avenue left by which a sitting president can be punished. That punishment is impeachment," Blow noted.

According to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, Republicans continue to overwhelmingly support Trump. Blow noted that they have essentially declared him a king, setting a "horrendous precedent."

"These court battles about witness testimony and document production could last for months or years. Trump could simply run out the clock. And, the closer we get to the election, the more afraid, I suspect, Democratic leadership would be to opening an impeachment hearing," Blow wrote. "Trump may well become the first American king, lawless and unaccountable, by default, by an overall political paralysis."

Read the full op-ed at the Times.