by Julie Kelly
It’s a good thing President Trump is making big, beautiful coal great again because Jolly Old St. Nick is going to need an ample supply this Christmas Eve. (See 2016, 2017, and 2018 for comparable supply-and-demand needs.)
This year’s naughty list is overflowing with bitter Foggy Bottom bureaucrats, silly female soccer players, a globetrotting teenaged climate change propagandist, a “squad” of freshman House Democrats, an anonymous “whistleblower,” sleepy prison guards, a TV celebrity hoaxster, and a native elder.
But since Santa is a busy guy, let’s help guide his coal-packed sleigh to 2019’s most deserving recipients:
Barack Obama’s FBI: Santa should leave the North Pole and head directly to a well-appointed mansion outside of Washington, D.C. to fill a stocking emblazoned with the name, “Chief Comey.” The bad behavior of the former FBI director has done irreparable damage to the nation’s most powerful law enforcement agency, all while he enriches himself with lucrative book deals, primo punditry posts, and ego-feeding six-figure speaking gigs.
In the span of just a few years, Comey framed innocent Americans—including a three-star general—lied to a secret court, lied to the president of the United States, lied to the news media, and lied to the American people. Comey kept “memos” of his private conversations with President Trump then stole those documents from his own agency. As FBI director, he concealed from congressional leaders his bogus investigation into the Trump campaign and he told President Obama about it in the summer of 2016 even though he has repeatedly insisted he did not.
Despite his treachery, Comey somehow manages to portray himself as the victim—a victim of the Bad Orange Man, congressional Republicans, Attorney General Bill Barr, and Fox News. Comey’s poisonous conduct infected his top team, including Andrew McCabe, James Baker, Peter Strzok, and Lisa Page, among others. Big lumps of coal all around.
Adam Schiff: Santa doesn’t usually stop at the Schiff’s Los Angeles-area home, but this year he should make an exception. The wannabe screenwriter has savored his leading role in the political spotlight; Schiff cried on cue, overdramatized hackneyed monologues, and hogged the camera. Newsweek devoted its front page to #The Resistance star. During a recent Hollywood movie premiere, Schiff received a standing ovation from the B-list crowd. Legendary producer Norman Lear called him an “American hero.”
But the Schiff Show resulted in a long reel of lowlights. Schiff heard imaginary conversations and saw imaginary evidence. He subpoenaed the cell phone records of a reporter and of his Republican counterpart. After the release of the report by the Justice Department inspector general, Schiff’s memo purporting to refute the charge that there was any abuse of the FISA process is now thoroughly discredited.
The House Intelligence Committee chairman had to confess that yes, his staff did talk to the alleged “whistleblower” after Schiff insisted it didn’t happen. He had to apologize for pretending to imitate Trump threatening the president of Ukraine. Schiff promised to invite the so-called “whistleblower” to testify before his committee until it became clear the so-called “whistleblower” might instead blow the whistle on Schiff’s dirty dealings.
But ’tis the season of love and faith and hope and whatnot, so perhaps we should offer Schiff grace instead of coal. Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) suggested in a letter to Schiff that he might benefit from some sort of 12-step program for serial liars: “After publishing false conclusions of such enormity…it is clear you are in need of rehabilitation,” Nunes wrote on December 15.
But Schiff would first have to acknowledge he has a problem—a confession that undoubtedly would prompt the cancellation of his appearances on MSNBC and invites to Hollywood screenings. So even the most optimistic believers among us this holiday season should be skeptical that Schiff will see the light.
Robert Mueller: Santa is accustomed to dealing with imposters since thousands of Santa wannabes populate shopping malls and office holiday parties around the world. But even Santa should be aghast at the poor replica of a fierce, dogged, just-the-facts-ma’am lawman presented to the American people when Robert Mueller testified to Congress about his fruitless probe into Russian “collusion.”
We were assured that the former FBI director and Comey BFF would deliver the goods showing how the Trump campaign conspired with the Kremlin to hijack the 2016 presidential election. Democrats, NeverTrump Republicans, and the news media cheered his appointment; #TheResistance impatiently awaited the day when Mueller hauled Trump out of the Oval Office in handcuffs. Office raids, pre-dawn arrests of elderly accomplices, and a steady drip of indictments animated the special counsel’s drama.
But his 448-page report landed with a thud. No collusion and only a handful of sketchy accusations of obstruction of justice backed mostly by Comey’s “memos.” Mueller’s July 24 public testimony on Capitol Hill sealed his fate. His demeanor veered from forgetfulness to obstinate; he feigned ignorance about Fusion GPS, the hired hit squad that initially concocted the collusion scheme.
One might be inclined to forgive and forget, except Mueller’s probe inflicted real damage. The special counsel knew from the start that his case was weak if nonexistent. That didn’t stop Mueller and his team of partisan prosecutors from pushing the boundaries of the law and common decency in their pursuit of the Bad Orange Man. On behalf of the America he fecklessly attempted to divide, Santa should fill Mueller’s tattered stocking to the brim.
Mitt Romney: The junior senator from Utah wasted no time using his consolation-prize post to agitate against Donald Trump, the man occupying the office Romney twice failed to win.
Romney started 2019 with a scathing op-ed in the Washington Post accusing Trump of many mean things: “To a great degree, a presidency shapes the public character of the nation,” Romney preached on January 1. “A president should demonstrate the essential qualities of honesty and integrity, and elevate the national discourse with comity and mutual respect. With the nation so divided, resentful and angry, presidential leadership in qualities of character is indispensable. And it is in this province where the incumbent’s shortfall has been most glaring.”
Romney used the first year of his Senate term to exact revenge on the president who refused to appoint the two-time presidential loser to his cabinet despite Romney’s public groveling. After running as a hardline immigration hawk, Romney insisted there was no crisis at the southern border as he vetoed Trump’s emergency declaration to halt record-shattering illegal crossings.
The self-proclaimed “severely conservative” Republican now pledges to advance not-at-all conservative policies such as a carbon tax. In one of the funniest political moments of 2019, a reporter exposed Romney’s burner Twitter account: Pierre Delecto. Romney’s pretend persona, was just as insufferable, smug, and sanctimonious as the real article. They both deserve plenty of yet-untaxed fossilized carbon.
The Press: Santa’s white gloves are permanently stained black from stuffing the stockings belonging to the degenerates in the American news media. But until they clean up their act, which doesn’t appear likely any time soon, reporters, editors, and pundits will continue to have the sadz on Christmas morn.
After their contemptible behavior during the Brett Kavanaugh debacle last year, one would have hoped the media had learned a lesson. But they got off to a bang just as the new year began; this time taking aim at innocent Christian teenagers attending a pro-life rally in the nation’s capital.
The fabricated tale of MAGA-hat-wearing high school students “mocking a native elder” went viral in January 2019; left-wing and NeverTrump conservative outlets were complicit. Only after a few observers on social media circulated the full video of what happened—the “native elder” was a professional protester who provoked the boys—did the media attempt to backtrack. But it was too late; the boys were the target of death threats and the media, once again, used its Trump-hating platform to accuse the president and all of his supporters of promoting racism and white supremacy.
In 2019, the media have continued to do the Left’s bidding. They’ve offered no apology for peddling the collusion falsehood for three years; to the contrary, news organizations have hired the very same corrupt bureaucrats responsible for perpetrating the fraud.
The media have been all-in on the latest impeachment ruse, shamelessly dividing the country again. There isn’t enough coal in the world to punish the Fourth Estate. Then again, being a mainstream journalist in the Trump era is punishment enough.
There are other worthy recipients, but Santa only has so much time. Don’t worry, though—2020 promises to produce an even longer list.
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Julie Kelly is a political commentator and senior contributor to American Greatness. Her past work can be found at The Federalist and National Review. She also has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, The Hill, Chicago Tribune, Forbes, and Genetic Literacy Project. After college graduation, she served as a policy and communications consultant for several Republican candidates and elected officials in suburban Chicago. She also volunteered for her local GOP organization. After staying home for more than 10 years to raise her two daughters, Julie began teaching cooking classes out of her home. She then started writing about food policy, agriculture, and biotechnology, as well as climate change and other scientific issues. She graduated from Eastern Illinois University in 1990 with a degree in communications and minor degrees in political science and journalism. Julie lives in suburban Chicago with her husband, two daughters, and (unfortunately) three dogs.
Photo “Lump of Coal” by Duncan Harris. CC BY-SA 2.0.