All 10 living former defense secretaries declare election is over in forceful public letter - CNNPolitics

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  gsquared  •  3 weeks ago  •  14 comments

By:   Paul LeBlanc (CNN)

All 10 living former defense secretaries declare election is over in forceful public letter - CNNPolitics
All 10 living former US defense secretaries declared that the US presidential election is over in a forceful public letter published in The Washington Post on Sunday as President Donald Trump continues to deny his election loss to Joe Biden.

Why did all 10 living former Defense Secretaries, including the two who worked for Trump, feel that it was necessary for this extraordinary letter to come out today?  Are they aware of some information that has them concerned?


S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



(CNN)All 10 living former US defense secretaries declared that the US presidential election is over in a forceful public letter published in The Washington Post on Sunday as President Donald Trump continues to deny his election loss to Joe Biden.

The letter -- signed by Dick Cheney, James Mattis, Mark Esper, Leon Panetta, Donald Rumsfeld, William Cohen, Chuck Hagel, Robert Gates, William Perry and Ashton Carter -- amounts to a remarkable show of force against Trump's subversion efforts just days before Congress is set to count Electoral College votes.

"Our elections have occurred. Recounts and audits have been conducted. Appropriate challenges have been addressed by the courts. Governors have certified the results. And the electoral college has voted. The time for questioning the results has passed; the time for the formal counting of the electoral college votes, as prescribed in the Constitution and statute, has arrived," the group wrote.

Since Election Day, Trump has falsely claimed that a second term is being stolen, even as there have been no credible allegations of widespread voting issues as affirmed by dozens of judges, governors, and election officials, the Electoral College, the Justice Department, the Department of Homeland Security, and the US Supreme Court.

Still, a wide swath of congressional Republicans are siding with the President and plan to object to Biden's win during Electoral College counting on Wednesday -- even though their efforts will only delay the inevitable affirmation of Biden's win.  

The former Defense secretaries, who collectively represent decades of tenure in the position, wrote that presidential transitions "are a crucial part of the successful transfer of power."

"They often occur at times of international uncertainty about U.S. national security policy and posture. They can be a moment when the nation is vulnerable to actions by adversaries seeking to take advantage of the situation."

The letter follows Trump's removal of Esper in November as part of a set of sweeping changes atop the Defense Department's civilian leadership structure that included the installation of perceived loyalists to the President.

The shakeup put officials inside the Pentagon on edge and fueled a growing sense of alarm among military and civilian officials.

And while America's top military officer, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley, told Congress in August that the military won't help settle any election disputes, the group of former Defense secretaries reiterated in their letter that such an effort "would take us into dangerous, unlawful and unconstitutional territory."

"Civilian and military officials who direct or carry out such measures would be accountable, including potentially facing criminal penalties, for the grave consequences of their actions on our republic," the letter states.

Cohen, a Republican who served as Secretary of Defense under President Bill Clinton, told CNN's Ana Cabrera on "Newsroom" shortly after the letter was published that the "highly unusual" step was warranted given the "unconstitutional path" Trump has taken the country.

"It was really our attempt to call out to the American people. We believe all of them are patriotic. They've been led down a path by President Trump, which is an unconstitutional path. And so we felt it was incumbent on us as having served in the Defense Department to say: Please all of you in the Defense Department, you've taken an oath to serve this country, this Constitution, not any given individual," he said.

The former Defense secretaries ended their letter urging the Defense Department to "refrain from any political actions" that could undermine the election results or harm the transition to a new administration.

"We call upon them, in the strongest terms, to do as so many generations of Americans have done before them," the letter states.

"This final action is in keeping with the highest traditions and professionalism of the U.S. armed forces, and the history of democratic transition in our great country."  


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Gsquared
Freshman Principal
1  seeder  Gsquared    3 weeks ago

This is absolutely chilling.  

We are living in very dangerous times.

 
 
 
lady in black
PhD Participates
1.1  lady in black  replied to  Gsquared @1    3 weeks ago

You are correct, we have an unstable, lying, cheating, egoistical lunatic LOSER who can't face the fact that he LOST, grasping at straws to try to stay president.  January 20th can't come soon enough.  

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
Professor Principal
2  Perrie Halpern R.A.    3 weeks ago

I find it sad that things have come to this, yet it understandable given the audio of the President trying to get SC to overturn the vote. The bigger problem is that there are fellow Americans that still believe that the vote was stolen and that there shouldn't be a peaceful transfer of power. They call themselves patriots yet they don't follow the very fundamentals of what this country was founded on, from the first time that this transfer was done, by John Adams to Thomas Jefferson after a very bitter and nasty election. 

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
3  Kavika     3 weeks ago

Those Republicans that feel the election was a fraud against all evidence should understand after the phone conversation between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State that not only is Trump trying to steal the election but is endangering the US and has possibly committed a crime. 

It's extraordinary that ten Sec of Defense wrote this letter.

 
 
 
Ender
PhD Principal
4  Ender    3 weeks ago

Calling on leaders to be leaders.

I read the Biden team still isn't getting a lot of info.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
PhD Principal
5  sandy-2021492    3 weeks ago

I hope the Secret Service is very prepared for this year's inauguration.  I can't imagine it will proceed as smoothly as it should.

 
 
 
Ender
PhD Principal
5.1  Ender  replied to  sandy-2021492 @5    3 weeks ago

I feel like I piggy back off of you sometimes. Just want you to know I am not trying to ride off of ya, you always just make me think of things...Haha

Anyway I thought, could you imagine having to go into the office and have to deal with it all after the donald administration. Everything would have to be a mess.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
PhD Principal
5.1.1  sandy-2021492  replied to  Ender @5.1    3 weeks ago
could you imagine having to go into the office and have to deal with it all after the donald administration.

I don't want to.  With the incompetence that's been on display on the last four years, I imagine quite a bit of it will be a disaster.  Nobody will know what's going on, where anything is at, etc.  It'll be like a kindergarten teacher coming back from a week off and finding out that the substitute teacher let the kids grade the papers and organize the materials.

I was thinking more along the lines of violence when Biden is sworn in.  I think if the Proud Boys and similar groups don't manage to get themselves killed or arrested before that, they'll be a security threat on Inauguration Day.

 
 
 
Ender
PhD Principal
5.1.2  Ender  replied to  sandy-2021492 @5.1.1    3 weeks ago

Spot on.

I read (amazing the amount of crap I read on the internet) there were posts of some of those groups wanting, planning to wear the same kind of clothes as other groups so people were confused at to who/what was being violent. Much less about people trying to smuggle in weapons.

 
 
 
pat wilson
Professor Guide
6  pat wilson    3 weeks ago

I still can't understand how so many believe the election was stolen. What about all the down ticket Republicans that won their elections ? Are they ready to toss all those votes too ?!?!?

 
 
 
Gsquared
Freshman Principal
6.1  seeder  Gsquared  replied to  pat wilson @6    3 weeks ago

The people they trust and follow are feeding them misinformation.

No, they will never believe there is anything wrong with the votes for Republicans, just for Democrats.  It makes no sense at all, of course.  That is what we are dealing with in America today.  

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
7  Buzz of the Orient    3 weeks ago

A VIEW FROM AFAR, FROM A NON-AMERICAN:  At this point, with all the evidence before them, such as quoted from the article:

"Our elections have occurred. Recounts and audits have been conducted. Appropriate challenges have been addressed by the courts. Governors have certified the results. And the electoral college has voted. The time for questioning the results has passed; the time for the formal counting of the electoral college votes, as prescribed in the Constitution and statute, has arrived,"

...and the fact of Trump's threatening criminal phone call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to reverse Georgia's vote results, leads me wonder how so many can still support Trump, believe the election was "stolen" and hope for him to run again in 2024 - it is beyond comprehension.

 
 
 
Gsquared
Freshman Principal
7.1  seeder  Gsquared  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @7    3 weeks ago

Beyond comprehension, but true.  Those people exist.

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
Masters Principal
8  Bob Nelson    3 weeks ago

What a sad commentary on America, that these men should believe it necessary to write this letter.

 
 
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