Flake's anti-Trump speech will make a lot of noise, but not much sense

Flake's anti-Trump speech will make a lot of noise, but not much sense
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Senator Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeThe Hill's Morning Report — Trump and Congress at odds over Russia Senate GOP attempts to wave Trump off second Putin summit Senate approves resolution warning Trump not to hand over US officials MORE (R-Ariz.) is set to give a speech on the Senate floor this week comparing President TrumpDonald John TrumpWSJ: Trump ignored advice to confront Putin over indictments Trump hotel charging Sean Spicer ,000 as book party venue Bernie Sanders: Trump 'so tough' on child separations but not on Putin MORE to Soviet Union dictator Joseph Stalin, or rather, condemn President Trump’s attacks on the media as Stalin-like. While the senator doesn’t explicitly call the president Stalin in the excerpts released ahead of time, what the speech really amounts to is Flake attempting to end his Senate career in a blaze of glory. But it’s really just all blaze and no glory in the form of a noisy, narcissistic disturbance.

Flake is expected to link Trump to Stalin by comparing their use of the phrase “enemy of the people.”  According to NBC, Flake plans to say:

“Mr. President, it is a testament to the condition of our democracy that our own president uses words infamously spoken by Josef Stalin to describe his enemies.

"It bears noting that so fraught with malice was the phrase 'enemy of the people,' that even (later Soviet leader) Nikita Khrushchev forbad its use, telling the Soviet Communist Party that the phrase had been introduced by Stalin to for the purpose of 'annihilating such individuals who disagreed with the supreme leader.”

This is a weak attempt by Flake to link Trump to a dictator of who ruled by terror and responsible for the execution or death of millions of innocent people. President Trump used the phrase in a tweet to call out what he describes as the “fake news media,” for biased reporting.

Just to recap history, millions of his own citizens died during Stalin’s brutal reign, falling victim to forced labor, deportation, famine, massacres, and detention and interrogation. Meanwhile, millions of Americans are thriving in President Trump’s economy, the stock market is at a record high, unemployment numbers — including African-American unemployment — are down, and ISIS is being defeated. This comparison is delusional.

Not to mention that the president has accomplished all of this in one year, working for free, while being a human dart board for sore losers like Jeff Flake in Washington who don’t seem to want America to succeed.

Perhaps Mr. Flake ought to look in the mirror before citing Big Brother tactics.

Flake supported the Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act as part of the National Defense Authorization Act passed last year. The bill lets the federal government give money to dying news outlets and give federal intelligence agencies the ability to target foreign propaganda online, using federal approved “facts” to counter news they don’t see fit. The bill could be considered Stalinesque and was pushed early in 2016 by Senators Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanUS to provide additional 0M in defensive aid to Ukraine Senate GOP attempts to wave Trump off second Putin summit Bipartisan bill would bring needed funds to deteriorating National Park Service infrastructure MORE (R- Ohio) and Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphyDem senator ties Kavanaugh confirmation vote to Trump-Putin controversy Full interview: Chris Murphy speaks out on the Trump-Putin meeting and what it means Dem senator: NATO has become 'functionally obsolete' under Trump MORE (D-Conn.), and signed into law by then President Obama.

Then there’s the administration that immediately preceded President Trump’s. In May of 2013 the Obama administration secretly obtained phone records of Associated Press reporters and editors as part of an investigation into the disclosure of classified information about a failed al-Qaeda plot.

In a letter to then Attorney General Eric HolderEric Himpton HolderHolder to sit down with Colbert amid 2020 speculation The Hill's Morning Report — Trump, Putin meet under cloud of Mueller’s Russia indictments Eric Holder: Calls to abolish ICE are 'a gift to Republicans' MORE, AP President and Chief Executive Gary B. Pruitt said:

“There can be no possible justification for such an overbroad collection of the telephone communications of The Associated Press and its reporters. These records potentially reveal communications with confidential sources across all of the newsgathering activities undertaken by the AP during a two-month period, provide a road map to AP’s newsgathering operations, and disclose information about AP’s activities and operations that the government has no conceivable right to know.”

Jeff Flake said in an interview with NBC news that he’s giving this speech to try to “nudge the president back to where I think that we, as elected officials, ought to be. And I think that that's a role that I should have as a member of the Senate.”

Where was Senator Flake’s conviction in 2013? Did he think his role was as different then when President Obama was behaving as if the media were the enemy?

With all due respect to Sen. Flake, the American people do not want to go backward, and they do not agree with his analysis of where elected officials ought to be. If they did he wouldn’t have a 30 percent approval rating in his state and be forced to retire because, as he admitted himself, he couldn’t even win a primary race.

Lauren DeBellis Appell was deputy press secretary for Sen. Rick Santorum’s (R-Pa.) successful 2000 re-election campaign, as well as assistant communications director for the Senate Republican Policy Committee (2001-2003).