Tuesday, January 31, 2017

My Take: Resistance is Futile


The situation that developed in Washington, DC, last evening with the firing of the acting Attorney General and replacing her with another person in the span of about 15 minutes demonstrated everything that I was afraid of with the new administration. This is not a taping of the reality TV show The Apprentice, this is government in a dangerous and complex world.

Signing the Travel Ban Executive Order
Briefly, the situation that transpired was documented in a NY Times article titled, Trump Fires Acting Attorney General Who Defied Him. From my uninformed vantage point, the problem centered on the fact that the administration did not vet the Immigration Executive order through the Department of Justice before issuing it. 

The drama could have been avoided had the Attorney General been given the opportunity to comment on the legality of the immigration ban and they could have been asked whether she could have support it. The drama would not have played out in the news and the acting Attorney General could have provided her reservations and then quietly resigned rather have the splashy after-dark drama occur which further obfuscates what the administration is trying to accomplish.

Travel Ban Airport Demonstrations
The type of theatrics which are documented in the Times article are an unnecessary sideshow and undermine confidence in the administration to work collaboratively and to be inclusive of those who possess an alternative opinion.

This Executive Order has become one of the most contentious of the new administration partly because of the shock effect. Homeland Security was unable to prepare for implementation and it was unevenly enforced. Vetting the Order might have enabled it to be handled evenly and reduced the confusion associated with its implementation.

My Take: Regardless of the opinion of the legal experts, the Travel Ban Executive Order was going to be signed. The administration could have done a much better job, however, of ensuring they were aware of the potential backlash and human toll its promulgation was going to cause.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD
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