Today, Trump admitted that he deceived the American people about COVID. But that’s not even the worst news of the day. A whistleblower complaint from a senior Department of Homeland Security (DHS) official says he was ordered to conceal evidence of Russian interference in the 2020 election because it “made the President look bad.” Top DHS officials also tried to alter a report to cover up white supremacist violence.
Maybe I should feel happy that today’s news shows Trump’s lies so clearly. That’s not what I feel. Instead, I am deeply afraid for the future of my country.
Sounds Like Treason
Concealing evidence about foreign interference in our election sounds like treason to me. The Washington Post reports on a whistleblower complaint by senior DHS official Brian Murphy. Murphy “said he would not comply with the instructions, which he believed would ‘put the country in substantial and specific danger.’”
Besides concealing evidence of Russian election interference, DHS tried to alter an intelligence report showing the danger posed by white nationalist extremists. The Trump administration has an official line: Black Lives Matter and “antifa” are bad and violent, while white nationalists are okay, and some of them are “very fine people.”
Even the white nationalist Trump supporter who shot three protesters, killing two of them, was excused by Trump as possibly acting in self defense. Then Trump, Jr. defended the shooter on the grounds that “we all do stupid things at 17.”
So it is hardly surprising that Trump administration officials ordered intelligence assessments changed to reflect the party line. CNN reports:
“The [whistleblower] complaint also alleges that Wolf and Cuccinelli, both Trump appointees, directed officials to change intelligence assessments to ensure they matched up with misleading public comments from Trump about Antifa and ‘anarchist’ groups, according to a complaint filed with the DHS inspector general.”
“Separately, both Wolf and Cuccinelli also tried to alter a report to downplay the threat posed by White supremacists and instead emphasize the role of leftist groups due to concerns about how the initial language would reflect on the President, according to a source familiar with the claims raised by the whistleblower.”
Trump’s COVID-19 Lies
Trump’s lies and stonewalling on COVID-19 have already cost tens of thousands of American lives, and the death toll continues to mount.
Back in February, Trump admitted to Bob Woodward that he was lying about COVID-19. On tape.
“’You just breathe the air and that’s how it’s passed,’ Trump said in a Feb. 7 call. ‘And so that’s a very tricky one. That’s a very delicate one. It’s also more deadly than even your strenuous flu.’
“’This is deadly stuff,’ the president repeated for emphasis.
“At that time, Trump was telling the nation that the virus was no worse than a seasonal flu, predicting it would soon disappear, and insisting that the U.S. government had it totally under control….
“Trump admitted to Woodward on March 19 that he deliberately minimized the danger. ‘I wanted to always play it down,’ the president said.”
Trump knew the virus was deadly. He knew it was passed through the air. He repeatedly and deliberately misled the nation. Rather than sounding the alarm, he continuously minimized the risks posed by the virus, dismissed mask-wearing, and criticized governors for imposing restrictions.
- February 2 “We pretty much shut it down.”
- February 10 “Looks like by April, you know, in theory, when it gets a little warmer, it miraculously goes away. I hope that’s true. But we’re doing great in our country.”
- February 20 “Now the Democrats are politicizing the coronavirus. … And this is their new hoax.”
- March 10 “This was unexpected … And we’re prepared, and we’re doing a great job with it. Ant it will go away. Just stay calm. It will go away.”
- July 6: U.S. deaths over 130,000
- July 7 “You know, our mortality rate is, right now, at a level that people don’t talk about, but it’s down tenfold. Tenfold.”
- August 5 “This thing’s going away – It will go away like things go away.”
- Today: the U.S. death toll is about 190,000, with no end in sight.
- Today: Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said Trump has never lied and has never misled the public about COVID.
- Today: Trump admitted that he misled the country about COVID “to reduce panic” and because he is “a cheerleader for this country.”
I love this country, with all its many flaws. I do not want to see our imperfect democracy destroyed. I am afraid that is what Trump and his minions are doing, right now, in plain view.