Author: By Jennifer Rubin

Why it’s dangerous to have so many generals in the Trump Cabinet

Homeland Security Secretary John F. Kelly speaks at George Washington University in Washington on Tuesday. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/Associated Press) Don’t get me wrong: Some of the better appointments President Trump has made are generals or lieutenant generals (e.g. H.R. McMaster). In part, that’s because other picks suffer from egregious inexperience and ideological extremism. The lesson here should not be that generals make good civilian leaders. To the contrary, we are already seeing that a record number of generals in Cabinet-level ranks has its downsides. Generals are accustomed to barking commands and seeing subordinates salute and carry out their orders....

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Cotton needs to stop carrying Trump’s water

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. (Alex Brandon/Associated Press) The New York Times notes: More than a dozen Republicans — from recognizable names like Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa and Representative Mark Sanford of South Carolina to backbenchers like Representatives David Young of Iowa, Matt Gaetz of Florida, Walter B. Jones of North Carolina, Ted Yoho of Florida, Rodney Frelinghuysen of New Jersey and Justin Amash of Michigan — have agreed that Mr. Trump should release his returns. That list grows almost daily. On Monday, former Representative Joe Walsh of Illinois, a conservative firebrand and...

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Why Trump cannot brush off demands for his taxes

President Trump. (Alex Brandon/Associated Press) The Post reports: President Trump lashed out Sunday at the protesters who took part in marches across the country Saturday to demand that he release his tax returns, declaring on Twitter that “The election is over!” Trump’s comments followed a nationwide Tax March that drew thousands of people in dozens of cities on the country’s traditionally recognized deadline to file taxes, April 15. He bizarrely argued: “I did what was an almost an impossible thing to do for a Republican-easily won the Electoral College! Now Tax Returns are brought up again?” The one has nothing to...

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Trump launches cruise missile strike, eradicates ‘America First’

President Trump speaks at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Fla., on Thursday after the U.S. fired a barrage of cruise missiles into Syria. (Alex Brandon/Associated Press) President Trump — who ran a presidential campaign excoriating interventionism, ridiculed the idea of action in Syria, voiced confidence we could leave Bashar al-Assad in place and reintroduced the noxious 1930s “America First” rhetoric — when confronted with the real world threw away all that refuse and launched a retaliatory missile strike on the airfield from which planes carrying sarin gas took off earlier in the week. The Post reported, “The U.S. military launched...

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The health-care fiasco was not inevitable

Stephen K. Bannon during a panel discussion at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) last month. (Bill O’Leary/The Washington Post) Today President Trump, House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.), moderate House Republicans and Freedom Caucus Republicans risk their jobs, their credibility and their agenda. How could this have gone differently, without the potential for political self-immolation? Consider some alternative scenarios. In the first, Trump could have stuck to his campaign populist themes. Rather than defer to Ryan and to Health and Human Service Secretary Tom Price (whose plan was essentially what Ryan had in mind all along), he could...

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How Ryan messed this up

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (Wis.) meets with reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington on Thursday. (J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press) Conceding failure for now, House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) has postponed the House vote on the Republican health-care plan. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) helped explain how things went so wrong at her news conference earlier in the day. She was plainly enjoying herself at Republicans’ expense. She heralded the Affordable Healthcare Act as “overwhelmingly” successful on this, its seventh anniversary. She chided President Trump, whom she called a “rookie.” But she also cut to the heart of...

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Trump’s closing pitch underwhelms

President Trump arrives at the Capitol to talk to House GOP members on March 21 in Washington. (Matt McClain/The Washington Post) President Trump’s breathtaking lack of interest in or grasp of policy made his appearance on Capitol Hill in favor of Trumpcare pathetically underwhelming. The Post reports: Assuring Republicans they would gain seats if they passed the bill, the president told Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), the chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, to stand up and take some advice. “I’m gonna come after you, but I know I won’t have to, because I know you’ll vote ‘yes,’” said the president,...

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Meryl Streep strips the bark off Trump

While being honored with a lifetime achievement award at the 2017 Golden Globe awards, actress Meryl Streep criticized President-elect Donald Trump’s performance on the campaign trail, specifically when he mocked a disabled reporter. (Hollywood Foreign Press Association) Meryl Streep’s evisceration of President-elect Donald Trump at the Golden Globes Sunday night left a lasting impression because she refrained from delivering an ideological rant; rather, she presented a demonstration of moral shaming. She did not mention him by name or label him. She described what he did/does and explained why it matters: There was one performance this year that stunned me. It sank its hooks in my heart. Not because it was good. There was nothing good about it. But it was effective and it did its job. It made its intended audience laugh and show their teeth. It was that moment when the person asking to sit in the most respected seat in our country imitated a disabled reporter, someone he outranked in privilege, power and the capacity to fight back. It kind of broke my heart when I saw it. I still can’t get it out of my head because it wasn’t in a movie. It was real life. Aside from rank Trump apologists, who can really look at the video of Trump, arms flailing, and not see an act of immense cruelty directed toward a specific person? Republicans (including...

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