Joe Biden wimps out on firing his 'Scaramucci'
Twenty-three days ago, Joe Biden made a big deal about firing people in his administration "on the spot" who were disrespectful:
"I am not joking when I say this ... if you ever work with me and I hear you treat another colleague with disrespect ... talk down to someone, I promise you I will fire you on the spot ... on the spot. No ifs, ands, or buts," he cautioned on the first day of his presidency.
Twenty-three days in, he got a doozy in one of those, with a creep in his press office named T.J. Ducklo, a "deputy press secretary" who vowed to "destroy" a reporter who was assigned to write of how he was dating an Axios reporter covering the administration. Ducklo accompanied his threats with pervy sex-harassment insults. According to Vanity Fair (language warning):
The confrontation began on Inauguration Day, January 20, after Palmeri, a coauthor of Politico's Playbook, contacted McCammond for comment while one of her male colleagues left a message for Ducklo, according to the sources. Ducklo subsequently called a Playbook editor to object to the story, but was told to call the Playbook reporters with his concerns. But instead of calling the male reporter who initially contacted him, Ducklo tried to intimidate Palmeri by phone in an effort to kill the story. "I will destroy you," Ducklo told her, according to the sources, adding that he would ruin her reputation if she published it.
During the off-the-record call, Ducklo made derogatory and misogynistic comments, accusing Palmeri of only reporting on his relationship — which, due to the ethics questions that factor into the relationship between a journalist and White House official, falls under the purview of her reporting beat — because she was "jealous" that an unidentified man in the past had "wanted to f---" McCammond "and not you." Ducklo also accused Palmeri of being "jealous" of his relationship with McCammond. (Palmeri had no prior relationship or communication with McCammond before calling her to report on the Playbook item, which was a story that she was assigned and had not independently pursued.)
He's quite a pearl.
And his actions took place right out the gate.
Biden sure can pick 'em. He got loud about firing abusive people, but when push came to shove, and the test came, he wimped out, giving Ducklo a one-week suspension, without pay. We're sure he'll manage.
This calls to mind what a different sort of leader President Trump amounted to. No one's brought it up that I can find, but Trump immediately got rid of a newly appointed White House communications director, a little toad named Anthony Scaramucci, after he made a toilet-mouthed call to a New Yorker reporter ten days into his job in the Trump presidency. According to the BBC:
Wall Street financier Anthony Scaramucci lasted only 10 days as White House communications director, a brief time but enough to prove controversial.
The appointment itself, on 21 July, triggered a shake-up at the Trump White House. Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and spokesman Sean Spicer both left their posts over his hiring.
Then just a week after being named, he launched a strongly worded attack on Mr Priebus, calling him a "paranoid schizophrenic" in a conversation with a reporter.
In the same phone call, he also directed profanity-laced insults at Chief Strategist Steve Bannon. Mr Scaramucci later tweeted his regret at the "colourful language", but the damage had already been done.
In the same week, reports also emerged that his wife, Deidre Ball, had filed for divorce. The New York Post said she was fed up with his "naked political ambition".
Scaramucci was last seen fundraising for the Lincoln Project.
Trump made no empty threats as Biden did; he just demanded that his staff perform. Scaramucci was disgracing the administration with his threats and toilet mouth, driving other staffers out, and as the BBC suggested, he was leaking like a wet brown bag to the press, too. He was a total bounder.
Now Biden's been put to the test against not just his own words, but President Trump's example.
As usual, he comes up short. He gets weak knees. He tolerates pretty much anything. Like President Obama, he can't even fire an obvious snake within his administration. He's no leader. He's a lot of hot air and no promises kept. I suspect we'll see a lot of this.
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