When historians look back at President Trump, they will write about his appalling corruption and assaults on our democracy, Constitution, national security and American values. They will also write about Trump’s spineless enablers, who allowed these attacks to happen. Three of those enablers are North Dakota Sens. Kevin Cramer and John Hoeven and Rep. Kelly Armstrong.
In recent weeks, those assaults have been numerous and frightening. They include withdrawing 12,000 American troops from Germany, doing nothing about Russia offering bounties to kill American soldiers, ordering the tear gassing and beating of peaceful protesters, issuing an executive order to defer the collection of payroll taxes and make unemployment payments, attempting to delay the election, ordering the census to end a month early, and underfunding and disrupting the U.S. Postal Service.
Removing the troops from Germany is a present to Russian President Putin, while it’s shocking, if not treasonous, that Trump did not even ask Putin about the bounties. Injuring peaceful protesters is inhumane, illegal and un-American. The executive order and delaying the election are unconstitutional. Stopping the census a month early is a deliberate attempt to undercount the U.S. population, especially people who are likely to vote for Democrats.
Trump’s efforts to damage the post office are all about him trying to cheat his way to re-election by preventing people from voting by mail in the middle of a pandemic. Both the census and the post office are mandated in the Constitution.
Cramer and Hoeven have shamefully supported Trump’s efforts to politicize the Postal Service, claiming that voting by mail leads to voter fraud. There is no truth to those claims, but that’s not the issue. It’s all about supporting our dictator wannabe, Trump. Cramer and Hoeven have turned their backs on the most basic element of our democracy, fair elections.
As for the other issues, Cramer, Hoeven and Armstrong have said nothing. They don’t have the integrity or courage to criticize Trump’s inaction about Russian efforts to kill our troops, or Trump’s attacking lawful protesters, or to call for an accurate census count, or say the executive order is an end run on Congress. In case Cramer, Hoeven and Armstrong have forgotten, Congress is where they work. Not one word from them to try to protect our democracy, our citizens and our brave soldiers. Being silent is complicit.
Actually, Cramer and Hoeven haven’t been completely silent. Cramer has absurdly repeated the Trump line that the reason we have so many coronavirus cases is because we do so much testing. That’s right. If you don’t get tested, you won’t have COVID-19. Hoeven has taken the gutsy position of cosponsoring a resolution to honor American cowboys.
Edmund Burke said, the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. Trump is evil. If Cramer, Hoeven and Armstrong are truly good men, they should speak out and honor their oaths of office, where they pledged to support and defend the Constitution.
Shaw is a former WDAY TV reporter and former KVRR TV news director. Email firstname.lastname@example.org