After eight years during which President Barack Obama weaponized the Justice Department, the New York Times appears to be surprised that President Trump has worked to undo many of his predecessor’s actions and take a more conservative view on issues ranging from illegal immigration to abortion.
According to the Times, the prospect of rolling back Obama-era regulations has pained some attorneys so much that they decided to leave the government altogether.
Trump would call that draining the swamp.
One former Justice Department official was willing to comment on the changes.
“All of the things you count on the Justice Department’s institutional bureaucracy for — thoughtful, deliberate attention to process, including all stakeholders — it seems to have been thrown out,” said Sharon McGowan, a former senior career official who joined the Justice Department in 2010 and worked in the civil rights division until departing a few weeks into the Trump administration.
Ms. McGowan, the only former career official who agreed to comment for this article, noted that some of her former colleagues are staying despite concerns.
“Some are absolutely staying because they feel like they’re afraid of who’d get put in their seat if they left,” said Ms. McGowan, who now works at Lambda Legal, an advocacy organization focused on L.G.B.T. rights.
It seems that McGowan thinks now that conservatives are in charge that they can’t be thoughtful or deliberate when making decisions on the Obama-era policies.
A White House spokesman told the Times that the president “is proud to promote a conservative agenda that has been far too long ignored by the Obama administration.”
The Times called the Trump’s alliance with the religious right an odd fit saying that he only recently adopted socially conservative causes, but that his appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court and Jeff Sessions as Attorney General has given allayed some of the concerns of social conservatives about the president.
Exactly what did the Times expect when Trump was elected? Did they really expect that he would leave the Obama-era policies in place?
For the Times it’s perfectly fine when a liberal president uses the Justice Department to advance his agenda, but not for a Republican to do the same especially when the president is named Donald Trump.