# John Kelly



Reclaiming what we believe

Ira Lacher asks, “Why do we continue to treat this president, who has lit a bonfire and thrown convention onto it, in a conventional manner?” -promoted by Laura Belin

The 2016 election was all about convention.

Donald J. Trump pledged he was going to “drain the swamp” — toss out conventions that had made government the enemy of “real Americans. ” And millions, who believed themselves the victims of an unfeeling, bloated, radical-liberal bureaucracy biased in favor of minorities and coastal elites, believed him.

Trump didn’t disappoint. He has fulfilled the wet dreams of conservatives by gutting many regulations on business, slashing the federal non-defense workforce and rolling back environmental protection.

But he also has thrown out almost every unwritten rule pertaining to the presidency since George Washington was handed the keys.

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One White House reporter's stunning inside view of access journalism

“I personally love it when he tweets,” said Bloomberg correspondent Jennifer Jacobs of President Donald Trump during a recent appearance in Des Moines, “just because his Twitter is an uncurtained window into his mind, and we always want to know what’s on his mind, unfiltered from his staff.”

Jacobs opened a window onto her own mindset as she told a room full of journalists “what it’s like to get good information out of the Trump White House.”

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Grassley, Ernst not concerned by Trump's nominees or antics

U.S. Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst have given the White House nothing to worry about as the chamber begins the process of confirming President Donald Trump’s cabinet appointees. Not only have Iowa’s senators voted for the three cabinet members approved so far, they have yet to voice serious concern about any nominee.

Two of the least controversial cabinet appointees gained Senate approval within hours of Trump’s inauguration on January 20: James Mattis for secretary of defense and John Kelly for director of Homeland Security. Only one senator (Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand) voted against confirming Mattis, because she opposes the waiver allowing him to serve in the cabinet less than seven years after leaving the military. Only eleven Democrats voted against confirming Kelly.

Mike Pompeo’s nomination as director of the Central Intelligence Agency drew more opposition when it came to the Senate floor on January 23. Thirty Democrats, Republican Rand Paul, and independent Bernie Sanders voted against Pompeo’s nomination, largely over concerns about his positions on torture and government surveillance.

As dangerous as Pompeo could be to the rule of law as it relates to intelligence gathering and interrogation techniques, Trump’s deceptive, off-topic, self-centered speech on Saturday at CIA headquarters knocked Pompeo down the list of things that terrify me about the coming years. Robin Wright explained for the New Yorker why “Trump’s vainglorious affront to the CIA” horrified intelligence community professionals. According to NPR’s national security correspondent Mary Louise Kelly, former CIA chief of Russia operations Steve Hall has said that agency staff are worried they might not be able to trust Trump enough to reveal the source of unflattering information about Russian President Vladimir Putin.

This thread is for any comments related to Trump’s cabinet or out-of-control narcissistic rages, which require his advisers to serve as glorified babysitters keeping the president from spending too much time watching television. I enclose below official statements from Ernst on the first cabinet confirmations and from Grassley on his meeting with Kelly earlier this month. Both senators have studiously avoided any public comments about Trump’s child-like temperament or sometimes contradictory outbursts on matters of national security.

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