Rick Wilson warns remaining Trump staffers, ‘His stink is on you and it won’t wash off’


GOP political consultant Rick Wilson has a message for anyone who still thinks it’s acceptable to stay in the Trump administration and then later try to absolve their sins with a tell-all book: You’re an enabler, and history will not be kind to you.

In an op-ed he penned for the Washington Post, Wilson makes reference to former White House staffer Cliff Sims, whose book, Team of Vipers, has been the topic of conversation this week in the nation’s capitol, but he says Sims should have never joined the administration in the first place:

“There was a window of time during which giving Trump a chance was justifiable out of a sense of duty to country. You might have been vindicated for doing so if Trump had surprised us all and made good on his boast that, ‘with the exception of the late, great Abraham Lincoln, I can be more presidential than any president that’s ever held this office.’ But that window closed. You had ample opportunity to see, up close, the capriciousness, vainglory and allergic reaction to facts that the rest of us saw from afar. If you’re just now disavowing Trump, or explaining away your support for him, don’t bother. You own it. Leaving 2016 to 2019 blank on your LinkedIn page won’t save you from disgrace.”

A book deal is nice, Wilson admits. If you doubt that, just ask Sims, Omarosa Manigault-Newman, or even Chris Christie, who’s also out plugging a book about his time on the Trump transition team. But no book is worth giving up your dignity for:

“Sure, you might get a book deal. And you’ll probably find private sector employment — K Street is still a cozy hideout for plenty of Washington rejects. But history will remember you as an enabler, not a truth-teller. If you were still employed by the president or tap dancing on his behalf at any time in recent months, his stink is on you, and it won’t wash off.”

Wilson concludes his op-ed by linking those who deign to work for a man as deeply flawed as Donald Trump for what they’re really doing: Selling out their country:

“If you’re the next press secretary, policy adviser or White House counsel contemplating a melodramatic, self-absolving throwing-in of your Trump-caddying towel, don’t expect hosannas from the public in return for your pseudo-courage. You might hope Trump’s stench will fade, but I’ll still smell it. If there’s any justice left, everybody else will, too. Like a bad ‘80s haircut, your political cowardice will be forever preserved on the Interwebs. Your 15 minutes of shame won’t rehabilitate you, because selling out your Trump-world cronies can’t erase your original sin: selling out your country.”

Exactly! Good on Rick Wilson for saying what needed to be said.

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