Accuracy in Media

Dan Rather, the disgraced former anchor of CBS Evening News, took to Facebook to express his displeasure with Donald Trump’s behavior towards Hillary Clinton during Sunday evening’s debate. He compared the GOP nominee with a despot, tyrant or monarch for saying that she would “be in jail” if he was president:

“As Donald Trump paced menacingly last night on stage, as he threatened Hillary Clinton with imprisonment even though her actions have already been subjected to the arm of justice, as he batted away concerns over the leaked audio of him boasting of sexual assault as mere ‘locker room talk,’ the cumulative image for millions of votes, I suspect, is that this is a man who, at a fundamental level, does not understand what it means to be an American. And thus, by logical extension, he has no business being president.

Teddy Roosevelt famously stated: ‘No man is above the law and no man is below it, nor do we ask any man’s permission when we ask him to obey it.’ That is our national creed. I can hear the Trump partisans howling that Clinton has subverted the law on multiple occasions. It is their right to do so, but it must be pointed out that she has never been found guilty of anything. You can then resort to conspiracy theories as to why that may be the case. But those too have never been proven by fact.

Trump by contrast boasts of how the law should not apply to him. As crude as the nouns were in that leaked audio tape, what was most offensive was the relish with which he outlined a host of actions—the verbs—for which the rule of law says he does not have the right to act without consent. Yet his voice reeked of the privilege of a man who believed his celebrity removed any such constraints. When he told Hillary Clinton in the debate she would ‘be in jail’ if he were president, those are the threats of a despot, tyrant, or monarch—not a president governed by our Constitution.

It was John Adams who penned the phrase, ‘a government of laws, and not of men.’ This is how our Founding Fathers saw our national destiny. This is the spirit that our citizens, over the ages, have demanded of our political leaders follow. I suspect it is something most Americans still believe.”

While Rather was on his high horse, he conveniently neglected to mention what Trump pointed out—that what Bill Clinton did was “far worse” since it involved action, whereas what Trump said was just words—as crude and lewd as they may have been.

And yet Rather thinks that Hillary Clinton—a woman who has lied to and deceived the American public about Benghazi, her private email server and the Clinton Foundation—respects the Constitution and is better qualified than Trump to be president.

Trump may not be the best presidential candidate the Republicans could have chosen, but at least he respects the law and doesn’t flaunt it like Clinton.

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