- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 12, 2018

We live in the era of huge, well-organized, media-friendly marches with all the trimmings. Women march. Anti-gun folks march. Now comes a planned response to something which hasn’t happened yet: President Trump’s decision to “fire” special counsel Robert Mueller.

It’s not likely to happen, judging from Mr. Trump’s recent tweet clearly indicating he had no interest in such a move — despite persistent news coverage suggesting the contrary. But should Mr. Trump show Mr. Mueller the door, MoveOn.org is ready. The progressive activist group has already organized hundreds of protest rallies and marches, and mobilized a multitude.

Donald Trump could be preparing to put himself above the law. We won’t allow it. Trump will create a constitutional crisis if he fires special counsel Robert Mueller or Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who oversees Mueller, or attempts to compromise the investigation by other means,” MoveOn.org advises in their public outreach.

“Our response in the hours following a potential power grab will dictate what happens next — whether Congress will stand up to Trump or allow him to move our democracy toward authoritarianism. That’s why we’re preparing to hold emergency ‘Nobody Is Above the Law’ rallies around the country, in the event they are needed — 800-plus of them and counting, in every state, with 300,000 RSVPs to date!” declare the eager organizers in their public advisory.

They have 38 partners in the effort, including such organizations as Friends of the Earth, the Sierra Club, the Women’s March, Democracy 21, the Center for American Progress and such creatively named groups as Pantsuit Nation, Need to Impeach and Resistbot. They also have defined their trigger points.

“Here are the actions Donald Trump could take that would set these protests in motion: Firing Mueller, pardons of key witnesses, actions that would prevent the investigation from being conducted freely, such as replacing Rod Rosenstein, Mueller’s current supervisor, or repealing the regulations establishing the office,” the organizers advise. “Rallies will begin just hours after national events are triggered.”

OF COURSE COMEY IS NO. 1

James B. Comey’s forthcoming book “A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership” won’t be published until Tuesday, but it is currently No. 1 among all books at Amazon, and in three significant genre categories, including memoirs. Well, of course.

The news media has launched into its standard protocol for such fare, providing breathless but strategic leaks of the book’s content, news of Mr. Comey’s national tour and media appearances, plus assorted op-eds. Michael Wolff, author of “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” had an almost identical experience when his expose was released in January and rocketed to the top slot at Amazon well before it was published.

Meanwhile, there’s some Republican pushback.

“As former FBI director James Comey prepares for the release of his new book coupled with a media blitz beginning Sunday, the Republican National Committee has prepared an aggressive response to discredit him,” reports ABC News, which obtained a set of GOP talking points on the plan — and has an interview with the author on Sunday evening.

MEANWHILE IN NEW HAMPSHIRE

Some things don’t change, perhaps. The New Hampshire Republican Party and prominent Granite State politicians are busy planning a particularly noteworthy gathering later this month: “Cigars and Scotch!” to be staged at the historic Snow Shoe Club — a rustic, red-shingled cottage built in 1892 near the state capital of Concord, not far from the shores of a pristine lake.

The committee will welcome Republican National Committee co-chairman Bob Paduchik, who will give the locals a rundown on national strategy, and all the things they need to do to win “up and down the ticket” in their own territory. The $100 ticket covers two cigars, plenty of refreshments and an open bar.

The club itself has been a unique stop for politicians though, having hosted Sen. Lindsey Graham, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and a spate of other 2016 presidential hopefuls for “Politics & Pies” events back in the day — all of them covered by C-SPAN.

TROOPS YES, WALL NO

The never-ending discussion about the porous border between the U.S. and Mexico continues. But it appears to be evolving.

A new Quinnipiac University poll finds that a majority of Americans — 52 percent — approve of President Trump’s call to deploy National Guard troops to patrol the Southern border. Four-out-of-10 oppose the measure. But building Mr. Trump’s “big beautiful wall” to discourage illegal immigrants? The pollster found that 40 percent approve of the idea, with 57 percent opposed.

The president has requested $25 billion to build the wall; perhaps Americans are leaning frugal in this case. At least one researcher points out that the wall could essentially pay for itself, all things considered.

The Federation for American Immigration Reform has compared the price of the wall to the overall cost of caring for or managing America’s illegal immigrants.

“Securing the southern border is a sound fiscal investment. The overall construction and annual maintenance costs pale when compared to the $113 billion we estimate illegal immigration costs American taxpayers. In fact, if the project only results in a 5 percent reduction in the annual cost of illegal immigration to American taxpayers, and construction and maintenance costs reach the most expensive estimates, it would pay for itself after only six years,” the organization said in its study.

WEEKEND REAL ESTATE

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POLL DU JOUR

• 95 percent of U.S. manufacturers have an optimistic view of the future.

• 94 percent have a positive economic outlook for their own company.

• 93 percent expect wages in their company to increase in the next year.

• 87 percent expect their sales to increase.

• 63 percent expect to hire more people in the next year, 41 percent will increase inventory.

Source: A National Association of Manufacturers survey of 527 manufacturers conducted Feb. 26-March 12 and released Thursday.

Kindly follow Jennifer Harper on Twitter @HarperBulletin


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