In all of the discussion of the firing of Andrew McCabe, various news outlets focused his “loss” of his pension as opposed to the fact that career officials called for his firing for serious misconduct. It now appears that what was lost will soon be found for McCabe. The firing denied McCabe early pension recovery at age 50 of roughly $60,000 a year. However, that only means that he will receive the pension like other federal officials when he reaches the federal retirement age. If Democratic members have their way, it could be even shorter than that.
Below is my column on various proposal for gun control reforms after the latest school massacre in Florida. As the column discusses, the constitutional burden is more demanding than suggested by many politicians. This is clearly a right that is subject to reasonable limitations but it is an individual constitutional right that affords gun owners a higher protection in the court.
House Intelligence Committee member Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) leveled a serious allegation at former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. Jordan alleged that Jordan leaked classified information about the Trump-Russia investigation to CNN. Clapper later became a CNN contributor. I recently wrote a column about how Clapper ran out a statute of limitations for allegedly lying in testimony to Congress.
Below is my column in USA Today on the nomination Deputy Director Gina Haspel to head the CIA. While Sen. Rand Paul has declared that he will oppose Haspel over torture, some Democrats (who are being criticized for previously failing to act on torture allegations) are again hedging on whether they will oppose a nominee solely due to her involvement in the torture program. However, one promising development is an effort by Sen. Dianne Feinstein to have Haspel’s record on torture declassified. There remains some debate over Haspel’s role on notable cases. Reports still indicate that Haspel oversaw the torture of Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri at the “Cat’s Eye.” However, it is not clear if she was “Chief of Base” during the torture of Abu Zubaydah. ProPublica issued a correction Thursday that she was not Chief at the time of the Zubaydah torture. There is no debate that Haspel ordered the destruction of evidence of the torture program.
Here is the column (which has been edited since its original posting):
We have been following the controversy over the claim of Native American ancestry by Sen. Elizabeth Warren and the continued criticism from President Donald Trump who continues mock her as “Pocahontas”. Recently, we discussed Warren’s surprise speech doubling down on her claim and whether Warren would simply take a DNA test to put the matter to rest. The suggestion was echoed by the media in Massachusetts like the Berkshire Eagle For $100, the question is why let the matter simmer. Warren answered that question this weekend and the answer is no.
We previously discussed the complaint filed by Walter Shaub, the former director of the Office of Government Ethics against White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway for violating the Hatch Act. At the time, I discussed my view that the statements of Conway concerning the special Senate election in Alabama were clear violations of the Act. The new report by OSC special counsel, Henry Kerner found two violations in Conway’s making highly political statements in her “official capacity” in November and December of last year in supporting Alabama candidate Roy Moore. Kerner, a Trump appointee, in a letter to President Donald Trump, called on President Trump to take “appropriate disciplinary action.” However, the White House issued an almost immediate dismissal of the findings. That was a mistake in my view. The President can justify not firing Conway but, particularly for an Administration fighting what it considers politicized actions in the Executive Branch, the President should reaffirm the need to comply with the Hatch Act, Some have criticized the act, but it remains federal law.