Refilling the Swamp? Trump Rescinded The Ethical Lobbying Bar For Aides As He Was Leaving Office

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In a column this week, I was recently critical of the pardons issued by former President Donald Trump, including additional figures convicted of different forms of political corruption. For a person who pledged to “drain the swamp,” his pardons show an unprecedented sense of sympathy (and clemency) for those who profiteered in public office. Yet, those pardons pales in comparison to the contradiction in one of Trump’s last acts as President: rescinding his bar on current and former members of his administration from lobbying their respective agencies for five years.

The order required his political appointees to agree to the lobbying ban as a condition for their positions, as well as pledge not to undertake work that would require them to register as a “foreign agent” after leaving government. It was one of the few actual moves to reinforce government ethics in the Administration.  I was critical of the Administration for openly embracing nepotism and tolerating violations of the Hatch Act.

The signing of the one-page revocation of the ethics order on Tuesday before his departure was the ultimate act of cynicism.  President Bill Clinton signed a similar order on his way out the door. What is so striking is how such politicians openly acknowledge that their earlier ethical positions were nothing more than a political ploy.

Biden issued a new rule imposing limitations for least two years after leaving service. That is a terrific start and I am hopeful that Biden will remain faithful to the principle throughout his term.

Of course, Trump is not the first to promise to drain the swamp only to add to its corrupt ecosystem. However, the move shows how voters are played for chumps with these pledges of governmental ethics in Washington.

37 thoughts on “Refilling the Swamp? Trump Rescinded The Ethical Lobbying Bar For Aides As He Was Leaving Office”

  1. There is no “law” in our American society anymore, at least not at the top. Trump’s term in office demonstrated that any federal law he wished to enforce could be blithely disregarded via nationwide injunction by a district court judge. Immigration law has been routinely ignored for decades by the same legislators who wrote the damn laws. And the election? Need I say anything that hasn’t already been said? Set aside all the Dominion fraud theories and just examine the Pennsylvania election law issues. The PA legislature, governor, and SecState had no right to implement the election rules used in the 2020 election. They just said screw it, and ignored every law previously written regarding the rules of modifying their own state constitution. The fact of the matter is, our government is no longer “legitimate”. It doesn’t follow its own rules, which is pretty much the entire foundation of any government’s legitimacy. The problem has been getting worse and worse, and the boiling point has arrived. The capitol protest was just a brief and tiny glimpse of the rage felt by citizens towards the establishment.

  2. God is showing he is angry with the millions of people who have turned away from him. Old Testament tells of the Jews turning to idols and going against the commandents of our Lord many times. He brought conquering armies against them where they were to become ruled by the their enemies . John 14: 6 .says that the Only way to the Father is through Jesus Christ. We all need to reconcile with our God. It is the only way to Heaven. The questions people need to ask themselves is do.we.want to.spend Eternity in paradise, or Eternity in Hell. Living on Earth is a stepping stone or should I say a Testing of our Love and commitment to God. Many will not pass the test. The road is Narrow to Heaven and the.road is.broad to Hell . Your choice, because your next breath may be your last and the consequences of not being with the Lord are devastating and eternal. God Bless all of you , in Jesus Name Amen!

  3. As far as pardons go I take issue with your description on the basis that you damn well know how things work in DC. The only people that ever are convicted on any corruption charges are people that, whatever party they are part of, are seen as dispensible, or outsiders. Joe Biden is about as corrupt as they come and the media and Democratic party refuse to even look at him, even though they know he is corrupt.

    Trump just spent his entire four years term fighting a corrupt FBI that wanted and did spy on him. Trump Campaign members that lied to the FBI or Congress got indicted and charged, while those that lied to the FBI in the Clinton e-mail investigation got immunity deals. Why not let people off for corruption when even people who attempted a coup against him got book deals instead of charges.

    Finally, every President pardons crooks. If they weren’t crooks they wouldn’t need a pardon.

  4. The media is always saying “impeached the second time” or “impeached twice”. The analogy would be “charged with impeachment offense twice” and “aquitted once”. “Up again for trial in the Senate,”

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