By Daniel Lang - Managing Director
Picture credit: Chicago Tribune
Normally, death and taxes are considered the two staples of modern life.
We all die and before we do, we all pay taxes.
Given the rumours that have swirled around President Donald Trump’s tax returns, it might be that he managed to bypass the whole tax thing and replace it with turning on supposed friends the minute things get uncomfortable for him anyway.
Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court, Judge Brett Kavanaugh has been heavily under scrutiny following multiple accusations of sexual assault during his college days and despite seemingly sticking by his man for some time, it appears #45 is close to abandoning the good ship Kavanaugh.
Famous for being wholeheartedly behind someone right up until he isn’t, there are signs that Trump’s support for Kavanaugh is beginning to wane.
With Republicans controlling the proceedings on Capitol Hill, the conservatives should have had little trouble instilling the man they wanted, but we’re now on the verge of the nomination collapsing, with Republican senators crossing the floor and supporting an FBI investigation into the claims.
While the FBI would only be given a week to come to grips with the accusations, the concession from figures like Arizona senator Jeff Flake, who had previously confirmed he would be voting in favour of Kavanaugh, open up a very interesting period in Washington.
Trump stopped short of becoming the latest convert to the #MeToo movement, his sympathies seemingly lying more with young men who could be the subject of false accusations than those who suffer the brutality and horror of sexual assault.
The merits of the movement can hardly be questioned given the number of high-profile men who have been exposed as the heinous criminals they are, but there is also a fair assertion that whenever accusations are made, a prevailing ‘innocent until proven guilty’ mantra must continue.
With friends of Judge Kavanaugh suggesting he may have lied to the senate, we are now facing a deeply troubling and uncertain time. Those still in favour of putting Kavanaugh onto the Supreme Court, a lifetime position, appear set to push proceedings through as swiftly as possible, but perhaps the whole affair gives US politics as a whole the chance to take a breath and complete a little due diligence before locking down key long-term decisions.
The bravery and determination of Dr Christine Blasey-Ford in front of an often hostile senate has potentially opened the door for some bi-partisan efforts to ensure the right man or woman is put into a lifetime role on the Supreme Court.
As accusations mount against Kavanaugh and former friends and classmates start picking holes in his explanations and excuses, the message may finally start to come through clearly. No matter how powerful a man you think you are, no matter how privileged or entitled you feel, you will be held to account for your actions in this new, post-#MeToo world we live in.
Who knows, you might even be held to account by Donald Trump. Now wouldn’t that be something?