In a uniquely first situation, President Trump is suing CNN and claiming millions of dollars in damages for the media coverage of him according to an article by FOX News.
President Trump’s re-election campaign filed a libel lawsuit against CNN on Friday for publishing “false and defamatory” statements about seeking Russia’s help in the 2020 election.
“The complaint alleges CNN was aware of the falsity at the time it published them but did so for the intentional purpose of hurting the campaign while misleading its own readers in the process… the campaign filed this lawsuit against CNN and the preceding suits against The New York Times and The Washington Post to hold the publishers accountable for their reckless false reporting and also to establish the truth,” Senior Legal Adviser to Donald J. Trump for President, Inc. Jenna Ellis told Fox News. (source)
It does not matter which party is in control of the White House. The fact that a sitting president could sue a major media outlet, even if they have reported on him in ways that are objectively incorrect, is dangerous.
The question here is not about what is “legal” or what one can do, but what one should do.
The actions of a President set social precedents. If a President does something, people may think it is OK to do as well.
This is why the first American President, George Washington, refused more than two terms. He did not want people getting the idea that a President could serve indefinately. The only major exception to this was FDR, and it was after his four terms that a Constitutional amendment was passed to limit the Presidency to two terms.
Washington’s example was so powerful it endured for almost 150 years.
What Trump is doing right now is to effectively turn the Presidency into something of a dictatorship.
I am not saying that “Trump is a dictator”. I am saying he is establishing precedents by his actions that are common to dictators and could be used by a future President to justify dictatorial behavior.
Trump is not a good president. He is abusing his position and threatening by his actions the legitimacy of government itself, such as his repeated attacks on the court system and Justice John Roberts for not doing what Trump wants.
Trump is not making America great again. He is setting her on the path to the evisceration of what is left of law and turning the US into something more along the lines of the USSA.
Because make no mistake, the Democrats are watching, and they will copy what Trump does, and when the Republicans complain about “the Democrats”, they will only have themselves to blame for allowing them to do the same behaviors that they justified for their own selfish reasons.