Washington politicians are fond of slinging around the expression “we are a nation of laws” but President Donald Trump and team have been using it a lot to justify policies that target political opponents and the undocumented immigrants that so frighten/anger Trump’s base.
Meyers called it “especially infuriating” to watch Trump pretend to care about the laws when his own Justice Department just accused him of a crime for paying hush money to cover up alleged affairs with two women. Meyers spoke hours after Trump’s ex fixer Michael Cohen was sentenced to three years in jail at a hearing in which Cohen told the court he committed those crimes at the direction of presidential candidate Trump.
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“Forget running for reelection – in two years Trump might be running from the feds,” Meyers snarked.
These days, Republican senators are getting pretty squishy on that whole “nation of laws” thing – no one more so than Utah’s outgoing Sen. Orrin Hatch, who told CNN that the Cohen allegations are just part of a Dem conspiracy to take down Trump. When CNN reminded Hatch it was the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York that was making the charges, not Dems, Hatch responded, “I don’t care.”
“Such a classic old-man move,” Meyers noted.
To see that GOP immigration rhetoric never was about rule of law, but about punishing immigrants, you need look no further than this week’s Chuck and Nancy Show at the Oval office, in which President Trump told Dem leaders Rep. Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Chuck Schumer, “If we don’t get what we want” in a border wall, “I will shut down the government, and I am proud to shut down the government for border security.”
When Pelosi told him to take it to the House for a vote, Trump began to explain to her, patronizingly, how the legislative process works, which Meyers likened to “trying to explain basketball to LeBron James.”
Meanwhile, also in the Oval office at that meeting, Veep Mike Pence sat like a “grandpa staring off in the distance while his children fight over whether to put him in a nursing home,” Meyers described.
After it was over, Pelosi called it one of the most surreal experiences of her career, telling Dems that, after the cameras left, Trump advised them, “We can go two routes with this meeting: with a knife or a candy.”
“Why is he so weird?” Meyers asked, rhetorically.
“Knife and candy aren’t two ways to have a meeting. They’re the two ways to get somebody into a van.”
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