In a USA Today op-ed, former acting Attorney General Sally Yates lectured Americans about the virtues of remaining faithful to the country’s core values of freedom and justice, as she covertly suggested that President Donald Trump make like Nixon and resign from office.
Hearkening back to America’s founding documents and making appeals to “the rule of law,” Yates wrote on Tuesday, “Over the course of our nation’s history, we have faced inflection points — times when we had to decide who we are as a country and what we stand for. Now is such a time. Beyond policy disagreements and partisan gamesmanship, there is something much more fundamental hanging in the balance. Will we remain faithful to our country’s core values?”
Trump fired Yates at the beginning of the year after she said the Justice Department opposed his administration’s travel ban executive order and ominously warned of “people who believe they are above the rule of law.”
She did not name Trump in this week’s article but did point to the handling of Watergate as an example of how a presidential administration surrendered to the rule of law when it was at fault.
“This wall of separation is what ensures the public can have confidence that the criminal process is not being used as a sword to go after one’s political enemies or as a shield to protect those in power. It’s what separates us from an autocracy,” she wrote before going on to warn everyone against participating in political arguments that are steeped in “emotion and fear through polarizing rhetoric and fabrications.”
The public can’t control what lawmakers say, Yates acknowledged, noting that Americans’ power lies in the voting booth.
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