UPDATE: What does Trump really mean? He plays to the crowd as is obvious from this footage today, after his campaign issued a statement saying he would act legally as president.
This is ridiculous. The crowd reaction is sickening.
Last night in the GOP debate, Donald Trump made what was in my opinion the biggest mistake of his campaign by telling the audience twice that the military would disobey the law to obey him, in essence to commit war crimes. Watch:
In my mind, this disqualified Trump as soon as he said it. Any candidate who asserts a right to violate the law and commit the nation to a war crime platform should be step aside.
Predictably, not long ago, Trump realized how badly he had hurt himself and he issued a statement vowing not to violate the law regarding torture or war crimes.
“I feel very, very strongly about the need to attack and kill those terrorists who attack and kill our people. I know people who died on 9/11. I will never forget those events. I will use every legal power that I have to stop these terrorist enemies. I do, however, understand that the United States is bound by laws and treaties and I will not order our military or other officials to violate those laws and will seek their advice on such matters. I will not order a military officer to disobey the law. It is clear that as President I will be bound by laws just like all Americans and I will meet those responsibilities.”
Well, that’s a relief, right?
No. Sorry. It is not clear that Trump has any intention of being bound by laws. That Trump would even contemplate the actions he promised just last night is enough to disqualify him. Those who support Trump have been warned. To maintain support for Trump, his supporters must own this.
As an aside, I am disappointed with the other three GOP challengers. They heard Trump say he would order soldiers to disobey the law and they still said they would support him if he was the nominee. All three of them should have said no, we won’t support a person who vows to commit war crimes.