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Washington Wrap: Begging Your Pardon

Omri Nahmias

For most people on this list Yom Kippur is just another day — but in the spirit of the holy day, we reviewed the past year

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

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Yom Kippur has arrived. It’s a time for introspection, a time when people apologize to one another for sins between man and his fellow man, and atone for sins between man and Hashem. 

True, for most people on this list Yom Kippur is just another day on the calendar — but in the spirit of the holy day, we decided to review the past year and see who needs to ask forgiveness — from whom, and for what.

James Comey

From: Hillary Clinton For: Derailing a promising campaign There’s no doubt that Hillary Clinton is stretching the truth when she claims that James Comey “cost her the election.” We will never know how things would have evolved if 11 days before Election Day, the then-FBI chief wouldn’t have made public his reopening of the investigation into the Democratic candidate for president.

 

It’s now clear that Clinton was steadily losing momentum toward the end of the campaign, and that she suffered from the professionals’ inaccurate assessment of her chances in states like Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Florida, and Ohio. Still, Comey’s decision was a reckless bureaucratic stunt. To announce the opening (and then closing) of a criminal case a week before national elections raises serious questions regarding Comey’s fitness for his delicate position. Apparently there’s at least one thing the two candidates in the 2016 election agree on.

 

Michael Flynn

From: Donald Trump For: Sparking the Russian ties investigation The fired national security adviser will probably go down in American political history as one of the founding fathers of the avalanche called the “Russian ties investigation.” Flynn lied to Vice President Mike Pence, avoided mention of his conversations with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak, and didn’t report payments from the Russian government’s RT television station, or his lobbying efforts for a Turkish company.

When his secret ties went public, he caused tremendous embarrassment to the newbie Trump administration, and fueled calls to open an investigation into Russian meddling in the election.

And once we’re on the topic of Russian ties, Jeff Sessions and Jared Kushner should be doing their own chest-beating too, for not immediately providing full disclosure about their own connections with Russian entities during the campaign.
Donald Trump
From: American minorities For: Further dividing a fractured country Donald Trump has had a few successes in his first nine months on the job: appointing Gorsuch as Supreme Court justice, rapidly and effectively handling two natural disasters, and an attack on Syria that garnered praise from the political establishment. But he still doesn’t seem to have internalized that he is the president of all Americans. Despite his successes, he has so far failed in one of the most important duties of a president: to serve as a unifying force.

Instead of trying to bring Americans together, he was too busy with divisiveness. Sometimes, it was an active choice, like his travel ban for citizens from six countries with Muslim majorities, or his controversial decision to pardon Sheriff Joe Arpaio, a blow to the Hispanic population that felt victimized by the sheriff’s policies. (Excerpted from Mishpacha, Issue 679)

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