I take exception to almost everything McCarthy opines. What a prig!
Presidents since Washington have found occasion to utilize personal emissaries to help them conduct foreign policy. DIM icon, FDR, was the most prolific at this with Harry Hopkins. Hopkins undertook the most sensitive missions, including preparing for Lend-Lease of warships to Great Britain when the American Congress was intent on keeping the U.S. out of the European conflict.
McCarthy has an opinion (a guesstimate) about what the President’s motives were, nothing more. He could have more productively advised by ending his piece after the first paragraph and spared us the agony of the trip through his labyrinthine mind. Presidents were conceded huge latitude in dealing with foreign affairs, almost entirely out of the purview of the Legislative Branch, because they often require personal relations, sensitive negotiation and quid pro quo. Only in the past 70 years have we allowed Congress to wheedle into this Presidential function . . . and we have not won a war since.
I would like McCarthy to focus on the fact that the Ukraine was a far bigger problem under the past administration and was made worse by Biden’s “oversight.” Russia had far more influence then and committed unprecedented extra-territorial incursions and acquisitions then. President Trump overcame, and is still overcoming, the Obama regimes enlistment of the corrupt dysfunction of the Ukrainian government to defeat Trump in an American election.
The President has a duty, not just a personal vendetta, to uncover how that happened. Screw whether he’s got a personal emissary or a Secretary of State doing it. Almost all of the language I hear from equivocators like McCarthy coyly coach the President to duck behind The Deep State instead of decisively leading.
To people like McCarthy, President Trump is just bumbling through success after success. He certainly has no cognitive reasoning behind his conduct. It’s emotional behavior bordering on irrational. Bullshit! The man is two to three steps ahead without the artifice of political scheming.
So, Governor, I respectfully disagree with your coronation of Pope McCarthy.
From the Gov:
Thanks for writing, Jim, but nobody around here has coronated McCarthy as Pope. I thought his piece offered food for thought –- and in your case, it certainly did –- and presented the opinion of someone who made some good points but who ISN'T what you’d call a fan of Trump. Right now, especially, it can be helpful to go into the mind of someone who isn’t 100 percent critical or uncritical of Trump (and those are increasingly hard to find), and McCarthy is correct in saying that the President, by perhaps not choosing his words more carefully, has made problems for himself.
Taken as a whole, that was McCarthy’s own opinion, not mine, but he did make some of the same points both you and I have.
For example, there’s the point that other Presidents have used personal emissaries to work around the State Department to conduct foreign policy. I mentioned that in my piece (thank you for going into more detail), and I believe McCarthy acknowledged it, too. There’s also the point about the huge latitude given Presidents on their dealings with foreign leaders. In fact, these points are part of the case he makes that Trump’s actions do not rise to the level of impeachability.
I agree with you that McCarthy could have focused more on the problems Ukraine posed during the last administration, while Biden was supposedly providing “oversight.” Also, I disagree with him, as you do, on his beliefs regarding Trump’s intentions regarding a quid pro quo. McCarthy’s thinking about that truly is a “guesstimate,” as if he fancies himself a mind reader and is not offering benefit of the doubt. And I agree with you that he doesn’t give Trump the credit he deserves for his many successes. So it’s great that you wrote to provide that balance.