Saturday, April 30, 2016

You're Fired, Mr. Chief Justice!

By Eric Segall

The scene is the Oval Office. The date is January 21, 2017. President Trump is swinging a golf club when his intercom goes off. A soft female voice says:

“The Chief Justice is here to see you Mr. President, Sir.”

Trump responds, “Okay, let him sweat for a few minutes.”

Trump continues to swing the club and on his fourth effort takes a chunk out of the wall. He shakes his head and goes back to the intercom.

“Sarah, make an appointment with my golf pro for 2:00, and send the Chief in.”

Roberts walks in, looks around the room, sees the dented wall.

Trump returns to his desk and with great indifference says, “Good morning, Chief, sit down. How are you?”

Roberts sits in a very small chair in front of the huge desk.

“Fine, Mr. President.”

“Good, you're fired. I am displeased with your work as Chief Justice. You have no managerial skills or experience. I wouldn't hire you to clean a courthouse in Poughkeepsie!"

Roberts pauses, then calmly responds, “With due respect sir, you can't do that.”

Trump stands up behind the desk and puts his palms on the wood. “Of course I can. I am great, the Presidency is great, and I'm going to make the Supreme Court great again."

Trump raises his voice: "I’ve fired everybody who’s ever worked for me, except my children . . . yet. I am the President. Every federal employee works for me, including you. So I can fire you, and I have fired you."

Roberts says sheepishly: “You don't think the Supreme Court is great?”

“No, you're terrible, you passed Obama Care, twice!!”

“Actually, sir, Congress passed it.”

Trump shakes his head. “They're worse than you. Who cares what Congress does? The members of Congress are my employees also, and I intend to fire them, maybe along with your seven colleagues, who are just talkative nothings, except for Justice Thomas of course. And I will personally make health care great again."

“Well, sir, I do wish you the best of luck of luck with all that. But, I am afraid you can't fire me.”

“Why not?”

Roberts looks Trump right in the eye. “There are many reasons, Sir, but for one, we Supreme Court Justices serve during “good behavior.”

“What? Your behavior has been terrible! Anyway people who work for me have to have great behavior! Where does it say “good behavior?”

Roberts sighs. “Article III of the Constitution. I can’t be fired, only impeached. I serve for life unless I commit a high crime or misdemeanor.”

“That’s ridiculous. I'll hire the greatest constitutional law experts ever to change that. Besides, I am great at English and good behavior doesn’t mean a job for life.”

“It’s more of an historical thing.”

Trump looks confused. “What is?”

“That good behavior means life tenure.”

“You’re not a f*cking teacher! You don’t have any tenure. That is stupid. You’re stupid. This is exactly why you're fired! Besides, in my business no one has a job for life.”

“Well, this is a government, not a business of course, and we have the separation of powers. It makes this country great.”

“I know, I know. I believe in separation of powers, the greatest separation of powers, and I am about to separate you from your powers.”

Roberts gets up to leave. “Well sir, I guess we will have to see."

See what?

Whether you can actually fire me.”

Trump comes around from behind the desk and puts his arm around Roberts, who awkwardly tries to slide away.

“We could make a deal. I make the best deals.”

Roberts shakes his head. “I don’t think so, sir. I hold all the cards.”

“We’re not playing cards, we 're playing government, and no you don’t.”

“Don’t what?”

“Hold all the cards. "I'm the boss, the big boss, the biggest boss. you'll see. Start packing."

Roberts shakes his head and walks towards where he came in. “I do have the Constitution on my side and I’ll take my leave on that note.”

Trump yells at him, “Fine, I won’t fire you or the other judicial nothings. I will instruct the D.C. government to supply no electricity, telephone service, water, or food to the Supreme Court (there goes your crappy cafeteria). I will order that the Justices’ chairs and spittoons be removed and sold. I will convert the Court’s garage into a hangar for my helicopters and limos. You'll see!
Roberts exits. Trump goes back to his desk and picks up his golf club. He presses the intercom. "Sarah, get Sotomakagan over here pronto. We're cleaning house!"


Shag from Brookline said...

Scene 2: The House considers and votes to impeach President Trump for "firing" CJ Roberts, led by Speaker Paul Ryan.

Scene 3: In the Senate, the first order of business is addressing President Trump's challenge of CJ Robert presiding at the impeachment trial, as CJ Roberts declines recusal.

Scene 4: The Supreme Court considers President Trump's appeal, with CJ Roberts recusing. The Court 4-3 rules that CJ Roberts is recused from the Senate trial as he would be a necessary witness. The Senate trial would be presided over by the most Senior Justice Anthony Kennedy.

Scene 5: Justice Kennedy presides at the Senate trial, wearing a robe more ornately adorned than that of CJ Rhenquist at the Senate impeachment trial of President Clinton. President Trump is represented by constitutional scholar Ted Cruz, who is also Vice President.

[Add scenes.]

Joe said...

Point of order: it ain't Trump being impeached; Cruz should preside.

Joseph said...

What might be called for, although I don't exactly hope for it, is we elect Trump and then impeach him at Congress's earliest convenience, whereby Congress's approval rating skyrockets to the highest level in American history. So many buy into (and resell) the idea that it's all the fault of the other Crazy Party which supports all the Crazy Positions we loathe. As we all know, there is some truth to that proposition, but our parties are not so binary and neither are the unwashed masses who constitute the electorate. It might take Trump to prove that. I won't vote for him, but I recognize him to be something of a potential earthquake resulting from the rapid social shifts over recent decades that have impacted our politics. If not the Donald, it would, or will, be something else. Looking at the other choices, I only think we delay an inevitable crack up. Whether it's worse or better than Trump I cannot guess.

Shag from Brookline said...

Joseph: Here's a hint, the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus has just permanently retired its elephants. The GOP "Big Tent" has been collapsing. Is there any need for the GOP Clown Limo any longer? The 2013 GOP autopsy report was ignored, especially with the help of Ringmaster Trump.

Joseph said...

I would offer you a *slow clap* gif, Shag, but this is a classy blog. Another thing I could do is cite the election victories of the GOP in Congress and in states and Congress in 2010 and 2014, and how they held the line in 2012. I could point to the not unrelated weak bench the Democrats have. I don't share the fetish for a "big tent," and generally dislike trite terms used in the political season. Still, the GOP has proven to support a broad array of positions (which is part of the problem). Sure, we have an elephant running wild and breaking tent poles, but that doesn't mean people don't like such a spectacle (that is why, in fact, the elephant is doing it). The GOP is changing, like parties always have, and winning elections will always be at the top of the agenda. Whether the GOP ultimately abandons a particular constituency (conservatives, for example) or attracts another will not be determined by any particular critique of the party. That is a judgment call for each individual person. As I said, it's easy to look at the world in easy binary terms and generalizations. A common refrain is that politicians aren't listening. That is why there's been Nader, Occupy, and Bernie and on the other side prolonged strife leading to Trump. Easy marks for partisans but doesn't say anything about the role of the People.