President-elect Donald Trump has reportedly offered the job of national security adviser, which does not require Senate confirmation, to former military intelligence chief Michael Flynn. You might remember him from the Republican National Convention, when he enthusiastically led a round of "Lock her up!" chanting, because he's super neat.
Flynn, 57, who served as the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, has advised Trump on national security issues for months. Flynn broke from other national security experts who denounced Trump, joining the then-candidate on the campaign trail and leading chants against Hillary Clinton, including those that called for her to be locked up.An anonymous former National Security Council official told Politico that Flynn's appointment is "scary," and said: "There's been hope that despite what candidate Trump said on the trail that he was going to as president surround himself with folks that were more tempered in their views. But Mike Flynn, I mean, is definitely not in that same category."
As national security adviser, he would work in the White House and have frequent access to the president.
...A controversial figure, Flynn has been criticized for regularly appearing on RT, the Russian state-owned television station, and once attended an RT gala, sitting two seats from Russian president, Vladimir Putin. He later said his speaker's bureau had arranged the trip and that he saw no distinction between RT and TV news organizations like CNN.
Flynn, who wrote in his 2016 book, The Field of Fight: How We Can Win the Global War Against Radical Islam and Its Allies, that he was "not a devotee of so-called political correctness."
In February, the general posted on Twitter, "Fear of Muslims is RATIONAL." Then, in July, he retweeted an antisemitic post mocking the Clinton campaign's blaming of Russian hackers for leaked emails: "CNN implicated. 'The USSR is to blame!' Not anymore, Jews. Not anymore." Flynn later deleted his retweet and apologized, saying it was a mistake; the tweet about Muslims has not been deleted.
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In other news, Trump has also reportedly tapped Senator Jeff Sessions for Attorney General.
While serving as a United States prosecutor in Alabama, Mr. Sessions was nominated in 1986 by President Ronald Reagan for a federal judgeship. But his nomination was rejected by the Republican-controlled Senate Judiciary Committee because of racially charged comments and actions. At that time, he was one of two judicial nominees whose selections were halted by the panel in nearly 50 years.As Wesley Lowery noted on Twitter, President Obama's two Attorney Generals were the first Black man (Eric Holder) and the first Black woman (Loretta Lynch) to hold the job. Trump's pick thinks the NAACP is "un-American."
In testimony before the committee, former colleagues said that Mr. Sessions had referred to the N.A.A.C.P., the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and other civil rights groups as "un-American" and "Communist-inspired." An African-American federal prosecutor then, Thomas H. Figures, said Mr. Sessions had referred to him as "boy" and testified that Mr. Sessions said the Ku Klux Klan was fine "until I found out they smoked pot." Mr. Sessions dismissed that remark as a joke.
Mr. Sessions was also accused of speaking disparagingly of the Voting Rights Act and the stringent oversight it placed on Southern states.
And in addition to being racist, Sessions also defended Trump's "grab them" comment by saying that doesn't even constitute sexual assault.
One of the things I have been thinking about a lot is how many of the advancements we've made in anti-rape advocacy are dependent on the federal government. Title IX and campus sexual assault, for example. These strategies have been imperfect, but important. And now we're going to lose them. Say goodbye, for example, to federal grants to process backlogs of untested rape kits.
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And finally: Trump has reportedly selected Rep. Mike Pompeo for CIA director. He "gained prominence for his role in the congressional investigation into the 2012 attack on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya." Pompeo is a big advocate of surveillance, and has accused American Muslim religious leaders of encouraging terrorism.
He is keen to roll back the Iran nuclear deal, tweeting yesterday: "I look forward to rolling back this disastrous deal with the world's largest state sponsor of terrorism."
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You know who knows Trump didn't win because of economic anxiety? Trump. He knows why he won. And that's why every pick so far is an openly racist white man. Being a rape apologist is an added bonus.
He is going to govern precisely as he campaigned. And anyone who ever thought otherwise was profoundly mistaken.