Last night, I argued that the fall from grace of Steve Bannon is leaving too much influence in the hands of the New Yorkers and the Generals who dominate President Trump’s inner circle. Neither of these two power centers has much commitment to, or even familiarity with, modern conservatism and its concerns.
Now comes word that President Trump is disbanding the commission he established to investigate voter fraud. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said there is “substantial evidence of voter fraud” and blamed the ending of the commission on the refusal of many states to provide voter data sought by the panel and the cost of ongoing lawsuits.
The cost of ongoing lawsuits? Would that have stopped the Obama administration? Would it ever stop the leftist activists who challenge the Trump administration’s every move? If leftist resistance can halt the Trump administration’s actions, inquiries, and investigation by virtue of the cost of lawsuits, Trump will be limited in what he can accomplish.
I doubt the cost of litigation is behind the shutting down of the commission on voter fraud. More likely, those in Trump’s inner circle either buy the mainstream media’s absurd claim that voter fraud isn’t a problem or don’t fully understand the problem and want to avoid the ridicule of their friends in polite company who parrot the MSM’s claim.
From Trump’s perspective, the commission was Steve Bannon’s baby. Since the personal is the political for this president, he likely sees no reason to maintain it.
Trump, though, wants us the believe he would have won the popular vote but for massive voter fraud. So, in the hope of saving face, he contented himself with tweets saying “many people are voting illegally” and advocating voter identification. But without the voting commission, the facts supporting Trump’s claim and his advocacy cannot properly be developed and presented.
Trump also signed an executive order calling on the Department of Homeland Security “to review [the voter fraud commission’s] initial findings and determine next courses of action.” This is a joke.
DHS has no expertise in voter fraud. It also has very little interest in the subject, especially compared to the matters of life and death for which it has responsibility.
DHS is now run by Kirstjen Nielsen, a protege of General Kelly, Trump’s chief of staff. If Kelly believes voter fraud is a serious problem, it’s almost certain the voter fraud commission would still exist. What is the likelihood that Kelly’s protege takes the matter seriously?
If Steve Bannon hadn’t fallen from grace, he would have been a powerful voice in favor of retaining the voter fraud commission. Now, apparently, there is no such voice in the president’s ear, and the absence of one will have consequences on other matters important to conservatives, as well.