Former Secretary of State John Kerry responded Wednesday night to the explosive New York Times op-ed alleging a “quiet resistance” inside the Trump administration actively working to thwart the president’s agenda.
“It scares the hell out of me,” Mr. Kerry told comedian Stephen Colbert on “The Late Show.”
“First of all, there is a reassurance,” he added. “It means that for James Buchanan, he’s no longer the worst president.”
A senior Trump administration official who was granted anonymity by The Times penned an op-ed Wednesday claiming to be part of a group of individuals “working diligently from within” to sabotage parts of the president’s agenda and “his worst inclinations.” The piece has roiled the Trump administration, prompting Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats to deny any involvement.
Mr. Kerry, who has not yet ruled out a 2020 presidential run, said the allegations are “really serious.” He also referenced an explosive claim in Bob Woodward’s upcoming book, “Fear: Trump in the White House,” that alleges Trump aides went so far as to steal multiple documents off the president’s desk in order to protect the country from his most dangerous impulses.
Mr. Kerry said he never had to steal anything off former President Barack Obama’s desk.
“What it really means is we don’t have a president,” Mr. Kerry, who served as secretary of state under Mr. Obama from 2013-2016, told Mr. Colbert. “We have a president who is there, but he is not capable of doing the job or living up to the responsibilities.
“You’re not supposed to have people stealing things off the desk of the president,” he continued. “You’re not supposed to have to have a resistance within the White House to prevent your president from breaking the law or doing something that’s irrational and dangerous. You’re not supposed to do that.
“And what should really trouble everybody, and it troubles me that it doesn’t trouble certain people, is that members of the United States Senate and the House who take an oath of office to defend the Constitution and defend the United States of America are actually defending their own power, defending their own positions, and they’re not defending the Constitution or the institution of the Senate,” Kerry said. “They’re defending party and president. And that’s wrong.”