After The New York Times published Senator Tom Cotton’s, R-AR, op-ed on Wednesday titled “Send In The Troops,” many in the mainstream media and the far left appeared to erupt in anger, including NYT reporters, who condemned the paper and said it made them uncomfortable. In his piece, Cotton advocated for the military to stop the violent protestors, and not the peaceful ones.
An academic, Dmitry Gorenburg, wrote of Cotton’s piece in The Daily Beast on Thursday, marking the entire article up with red ink and changing the headling to “Disband The Police.” Further, Gorenburg scrubbed out instances where rioters nearly killed police and called the police white supremacists.
One NYT Magazine reporter wrote on Twitter of Cotton’s piece, “I’ll probably get in trouble for this, but to not say something would be immoral. As a black woman, as a journalist, as an American, I am deeply ashamed that we ran this.”
The paper’s editors, however, are standing by their action to publish Cotton’s piece and wrote an entire column to explain why. James Bennet, the paper’s editorial editor, wrote in the op-ed that he, himself, didn’t agree with Cotton’s stance, but that the paper stands with free speech.
“We published Cotton’s argument in part because we’ve committed to Times readers to provide a debate on important questions like this,” Bennet wrote. “It would undermine the integrity and independence of The New York Times if we only published views that editors like me agreed with, and it would betray what I think of as our fundamental purpose — not to tell you what to think, but to help you think for yourself.”
“One of those concerns is that we legitimated Cotton’s point of view by publishing it in The Times. That’s a category of concern we’ve worried about often, particularly in cases when we’ve published pieces by terrorists with blood on their hands or authoritarian leaders with dissidents in jail. It’s never an easy call, and this is never a criticism to be ignored or dismissed lightly,” Bennet said, concluding, “But, in this case, I worry we’d be misleading our readers if we concluded that by ignoring Cotton’s argument we would diminish it.”
Cotton “commended” the NYT’s editors for running his piece “even if they disagreed with it” adding that they “stood up to the woke progressive mob in their own newsroom.”
I commend the courage of the @nytimes leadership.
They ran my piece—even if they disagreed with it—and stood up to the woke progressive mob in their own newsroom.
This was the right thing to do. https://t.co/AIWlbA8Raw
— Tom Cotton (@TomCottonAR) June 4, 2020
Sen. Cotton’s office didn’t respond to this reporter’s request for a response to The Daily Beast piece. This story will be updated if one is received.
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Biden Administration Proposes Rule to Fortify Federal Bureaucracy Against Republican Presidency
In a strategic move, the Biden administration has unveiled a proposed rule aimed at reinforcing the left-leaning federal bureaucracy, potentially hindering future conservative policy implementations by Republican presidents. This move has raised concerns about the efficacy of democratic elections when a deep-seated bureaucracy remains largely unchanged, regardless of electoral outcomes.
Key points of the situation include:
Presidential Appointees vs. Career Bureaucrats: Of the 2.2 million federal civil workers, only 4,000 are presidential appointees. The vast majority, made up of career bureaucrats, continue in their roles from one administration to the next. This continuity is facilitated by rules that make it exceedingly difficult to discipline or replace them, resulting in a bureaucracy that tends to lean left politically.
Union Political Affiliation: A striking 95% of unionized federal employees who donate to political candidates support Democrats, according to Open Secrets, with only 5% favoring Republicans. This significant political skew among federal workers raises questions about the potential for political bias in the execution of government policies.
Obstructionism and Challenges for GOP Presidents: Some career bureaucrats have been accused of obstructing Republican presidents’ agendas, leading to policy delays and challenges. For example, during the Trump administration, career lawyers in the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division declined to challenge Yale University’s discrimination against Asian American applicants, prompting Trump to seek legal counsel from other divisions. The case was subsequently dropped when Joe Biden took office.
Biden’s Countermeasures: President Biden has taken steps to protect the bureaucracy’s status quo. In October 2020, Trump issued an executive order aiming to reclassify federal workers who make policy as at-will employees, but Biden canceled it upon taking office.
Proposed Rule and Congressional Actions: The rule unveiled by the Biden administration seeks to further impede a president’s ability to reinstate Trump’s order. Additionally, some Democrats in Congress are pushing to eliminate the president’s authority to reclassify jobs entirely. This has been referred to as an attempt to “Trump-proof the federal workforce.”
Republican Candidates’ Pledge: GOP candidates such as President Donald J Trump, Vivek Ramaswamy, and Ron DeSantis have pledged to address this issue. According to reports from Fox News, Ramaswamy has gone further, advocating for the elimination of half or more of civil service positions, emphasizing the need for accountability.
Debate on the Merit of the Civil Service: While Democrats and their media allies argue that civil service protects merit over patronage, critics contend that the system has evolved into a form of job security for federal workers with minimal accountability. Federal employees often receive higher salaries and more substantial benefits than their private-sector counterparts.
In summary, the Biden administration’s proposed rule and broader actions to protect the federal bureaucracy have sparked a debate over the role of career bureaucrats in shaping government policy.
Republican candidates are vowing to address these concerns, highlighting the need for accountability and ensuring that government agencies work in alignment with the elected president’s agenda. This ongoing debate raises important questions about the relationship between the bureaucracy and the democratic process in the United States.
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