More and more, it seems like we could call this the Op-Ed on the Orient Express (h/t best-selling author, the very funny Christopher Moore to me on the Twitter), as everyone and their press agent is sending in denials, and yet they all have motives; maybe they all wrote it! Let’s explore!
“Almost the entire cabinet and leadership team” pleaded “not guilty…”
The Hill has a list with denials from many/most senior members of the Fourth Reich; some are stronger denials than others, leaving some wiggle room. I like the ones where an underling says that their boss didn’t write it. Of course not! But did they sign it, hmmm?!
Anyway some denials from a handful of likely perps:
Vice President Pence
Pence’s communications director tweeted early Thursday that the vice president “puts his name on op-eds.” Jarrod Agen also defused speculation that a member of Pence’s staff was behind the piece, writing “our office is above such amateur acts.”
Internet sleuths initially took note of the use of the word “lodestar” in The Times piece, highlighting that Pence had included the term in a number of speeches over the years. The similarity was enough to catch the attention of late-night host Jimmy Kimmel.
Hey, Pence would have signed it with some variation of “Yours in Christ.” I still do not think it is him.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions
A Justice Department spokesman told CNN that Sessions did not write the piece.
“AG Sessions was watching Gone with the Wind,” the spokesperson added, “He is wearing out the tape.”
Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen
Nielsen issued a statement through a spokesman denying she was behind the op-ed.
“Secretary Nielsen is focused on leading the men & women of DHS and protecting the homeland — not writing anonymous & false opinion pieces for the New York Times,” said Tyler Houlton, press secretary for the Department of Homeland Security.
“These types of political attacks are beneath the Secretary & the Department’s mission,” he added.
“Besides,” Nielsen didn’t say, “we’re too busy stealing babies at the border. Who has the time?”
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin
A spokesman for Mnuchin called it “laughable” to think that the secretary authored the op-ed.
“The Secretary and his wife, Craven Morebucks, are busy planning their Fort Knox caper,” the spokesman didn’t add.
Much of the media is pontificating what the Op-Ed’s author intention is with this thing, and while it is a good question, the one answer that they are not exploring is, “Is this a lifeboat?”
Is this, in effect, laying the groundwork for the next iteration of the Tea Party so that Republicans can claim at some point when the Fourth Reich collapses (as it will) that they were always part of the Resistance?
Last word to The New Yorker:
“For twenty months, Washington has been asking, Is this the crisis? Is this finally the constitutional confrontation we have been waiting for? The Trump Presidency, to those closely watching it, and to many of those participating in it, has always seemed unsustainable. And yet it has gone on, and will keep going on, until and unless something seismic happens in our politics—and our Congress—to change it. We don’t need to wonder when the crisis will hit; it already has. Every day since January 20, 2017, has been the crisis.”
UPDATE 1: This is fascinating and telling – “At 4pm ET Thursday, 24 hours after the op-ed was posted, the page was just over the 10 million page view mark, according to a Times spokeswoman. That makes the op-ed “one of the most read pieces of 2018” on the New York Times website. “