INTEGRITY

Mirriam-Webster defines integrity as “firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values: Incorruptibility.”

Many of us aspire to live a life brimming with honor, virtue and integrity, like “Honest Abe,” who said:

“I am not bound to win, I am bound to be true.”

And then there is the “Oracle of Omaha,” Warren Buffett, who keenly observed,

“...  [I]n looking for people to hire, you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if you don't have the first, the other two will kill you."

Make Integrity Great Again seeks to bring back integrity as a basic tenet of a democratic republic. 

 
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MIGA Mission

We currently have a crisis of integrity in American government. It begins at the top and infects the rest of Washington – and the nation – and the fear of organizations like MIGA is that the lack of integrity will persist long after the current president leaves office. Making Integrity Great Again is an organization that seeks to restore integrity by exposing breaches of our most precious values like integrity and promoting legislative and cultural solutions. All of us can be a unifying force for good, and MIGA’s goal is to bring like-minded forces and organizations together in not a non-partisan way, but an anti-partisan way. Together.

FOCUS ON INTEGRITY

Integrity includes telling the truth

 
 

From the false claims that more women voted for him and more people attended his inauguration than President Obama's to the grossly false contentions that the Electoral College is "much more advantageous for Democrats" and Wisconsin "hadn't been won by a Republican since Dwight D. Eisenhower," Donald Trump has proven himself a habitual liar.

The Pulitzer-Prize winning PolitiFact site has fact-checked a wide range of claims by the president, with a more than 80% found to range from mostly false to false to "pants on fire."

His lies are so extensive and comprehensive, sometimes contradicting each other, that some news organizations have a running count.

The New York Times printed a two-page spread marking dates the President had told lies, including repeating lies, such as America being the "highest-taxed nation in the world." It's not. It noted that Trump told public lies or falsehoods every day for the first 40 days of his presidency, having now told thousands and counting.

From boasting that a 2016 rally saw an audience about four times as large as it actually was; to saying he has “essentially gotten rid" of Obamacare; to saying Germany exports “millions” of cars to the U.S. when many are made here; to knowing nothing about pay-offs about affairs.  We don't believe you.

 

Trump denied having mocked a reporter's physical disability and appearance during a rally. The frequency of the president’s mistruths has picked up, as well. The Washington Post Fact Checker has reported that Trump has now made more than 6,5000 false or misleading claims so far in his presidency.

 
 
 

Taking advantage of the less powerful shows lack of integrity

 
 

Then there’s the issue that Trump “consistently takes advantage of those who are less powerful, a trait of those who lack good character” and integrity, according to a June 2018 complaint filed by MIGA regarding his liquor license in Washington, D.C.

In fact, Trump’s abuse of everyday people is well documented. From Trump University’s effort to defraud 5,000 students using a “bait and switch scheme,” to his failure to pay business contractors while building and operating his now-defunct Atlantic City casinos, to 16 allegations of sexual assault by women all offer evidence that the president lacks integrity.

Some also point to Trump’s racist remarks before and after he became president. They argue that he’s dividing the country along racial lines and dehumanizing immigrants and people of certain nations, characterizing them as “murderers and rapists.”

In the 1991 Anthony Baxter film about Trump’s golf course projects in Scotland “You’ve Been Trumped,” the now-president’s boorish behavior and lack of integrity leads to the degradation of local habitat and its people as bulldozers cut through pristine countryside in favor of contrived and stylized fairways. Trump says the locals live in a “pigsty” and that he’s “doing them a favor.”

Baxter returned five years later for “You’ve Been Trumped, Too” to talk with 92-year-old Trump victim Mollie Forbes, who still didn’t have running water since golf course construction began and must rely on family members to bring her water or scoop out of a nearby stream. She bathes in her kitchen sink. Meanwhile that scene is juxtaposed by Trump jetting around living large as a billionaire and his sons hunt for leopards and elephants on safari in Africa. Truly unscrupulous and offensive.

Still not convinced of his disregard for the less powerful? Ask Apple co-founder and business and culture influencer Steve Wozniak, who in March spoke at an emerging technology summit in New Delhi.

"I can never stand Donald Trump. The way he treats people is very negative,” Wozniak told a gathering at PayPal's Innovation Hub. “(He) is a very rude person. Would I ever want a child of mine to grow up talking that nastily about other people? Absolutely not. It just offends me.” 

Reports of children being sexually assaulted in immigrant detention centers in multiple states are another example of the abuses against the powerless during his presidency.

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 Leadership in our government should show consistent evidence of good integrity.

Leadership in our government should show consistent evidence of good integrity.

 
 
 

Who your friends are does matter

 
 

Donald Trump has often refused to respect the requirements of law applicable to his conduct of business. From lying about his ownership interests to avoid domestic and international emoluments clauses; to the prohibited use of non-profit Donald J. Trump Foundation funds for private interests; to using a type of financial reporting designed to downplay negative results; failure to file transaction reports designed to guard against money laundering, which led to the 1998 payment of $470,000 to the U.S. Treasury; to noncompliance with regulations designed to prevent anti-competitive mergers and acquisition, the Trump organization has lied, stole and cheated its way to personal gain. And he has used his family and an army of loyalists to conduct his bidding.

Perhaps the ongoing Russian investigation may be the most egregious example, which crosses over into The White House and shines a light on the president’s possible criminal lack of integrity. Some of the details are breath-taking:

Not long after announcing his presidential candidacy, Trump’s longtime lawyer Michael Cohen emails Russian President Vladimir Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov about plans to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. Two months later, John Podesta, the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, falls victim to Russian hackers who gain access to his email account. A campaign of Russian-designed “fake news” begins.

The next month, Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak attends a Trump foreign policy speech in Washington, where he meets son-in-law and campaign adviser Jared Kushner.

Shortly thereafter, Trump, Jr., Kushner and advisor Paul Manafort meet with a Russian national and several others at Trump Tower. At the same time, WikiLeaks and DCLeaks start releasing thousands of documents about Clinton and internal DNC affairs. U.S. Attorney General and then-Senator Jeff Sessions takes numerous meetings with Ambassador Kislyak, including one at his Senate office.

After being elected president, Kushner and campaign adviser Michael Flynn meet with Kislyak at Trump Tower. Kushner also meets with Russian banker Sergey Gorkov, the CEO of a state-run Russian bank under U.S. Sanctions. At the same time, Sessions says under oath that he did not have contact with Russian officials during the 2016 presidential campaign, and Flynn, now Trump’s national security adviser, lies to the FBI, falsely claiming that he never discussed the Obama administration’s Russia sanctions with Kislyak.

Flynn resigns after 24 days on the job. The next day, Trump asks FBI Director Comey to drop the investigation into Flynn, according to sworn testimony Comey would later deliver to Congress.

Within days, Sessions recuses himself from any "existing or future investigations" related to the 2016 presidential election, and Comey publicly confirms the FBI’s counterintelligence probe includes "investigating the nature of any links between individuals associated with the Trump campaign and the Russian government.”

The story goes on and continues today. These are the people Trump surrounds himself with. Do they have integrity?

“Not long after announcing his presidential candidacy, Trump’s longtime lawyer Michael Cohen emails Russian President Vladimir Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov about plans to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. Two months later, John Podesta, the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, falls victim to Russian hackers who gain access to his email account."

 

Lack of integrity

 

The lack of integrity displayed by Donald Trump, his cabinet, associates and family extends far beyond November 8, 2016 – through thousands of lawsuits, bankruptcies, personal conduct and other dirty dealings spanning decades – which, unfortunately, continue today. MIGA presents a dubious timeline of widely documented facts compiled through verified interviews, court filings and news accounts.