HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » MUST-READ, ThinkProgress:...

Thu Nov 8, 2018, 09:04 PM

MUST-READ, ThinkProgress: This 2014 interview of Trump's acting attorney general is beyond belief


In a 2014 interview, the man Donald Trump just picked to run the Department of Justice appeared to claim that Social Security is unconstitutional and that basic labor laws like the minimum wage must be struck down. Yet he also seemed to argue that the Supreme Court should not decide constitutional cases at all.

The interview reveals that Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker is easily taken in by conspiracy theories — he claims he was “quite possibly targeted for my political beliefs via the IRS.” Whitaker launches into a Trumpian rant against “chain immigration” and “people trying to bring illegal people and illegal drugs into our country.” He claims that climate change “doesn’t appear to be that significant or quite possibly isn’t man made,” and calls for the Department of Education to be “disbanded.”

But the most revealing part of the interview, which was published by the conservative blog Caffeinated Thoughts while Whitaker was a candidate for the United States Senate, is a paragraph where Whitaker lays out his incoherent understanding of the Constitution. At best, this paragraph suggests that the man running the Justice Department does not understand some very basic legal concepts. At worst, it indicates that he has a disorganized mind that is unable to keep track of what he said just a few seconds ago.


Whitaker’s rant against both Marbury and the Roosevelt Era decisions upholding the New Deal echo the lunatic fringes of both conservative critics of judicial review and conservative proponents of “judicial engagement.” Whitaker is simultaneously tossing red meat to wild-eyed radicals who think that courts should be stripped of the power of judicial review, while also tossing red meat to a different set of radicals who believe that the Supreme Court’s right flank should turn judicial review up to eleven.

It’s unclear whether Whitaker is a cynic or a fool. That is, it is genuinely difficult to tell whether the former candidate understood that he was expressing two mutually contradictory viewpoints, or whether he was just echoing words that he does not comprehend, but that he probably heard somewhere from other conservative lawyers.

Either option, however, paints him as unfit to lead the Justice Department. Either Whitaker is a man of no conviction beyond “the right should always win,” or he lacks the knowledge and intellectual capacity to do his job.

Full interview, published in 2014, here:


2 replies, 383 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 2 replies Author Time Post
Reply MUST-READ, ThinkProgress: This 2014 interview of Trump's acting attorney general is beyond belief (Original post)
highplainsdem Nov 8 OP
aquamarina Nov 8 #1
highplainsdem Nov 8 #2

Response to highplainsdem (Original post)

Thu Nov 8, 2018, 09:15 PM

1. Sounds like he got his JD at Trump U

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Response to aquamarina (Reply #1)

Thu Nov 8, 2018, 09:21 PM

2. Sure does.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread