Like a page ripped out of a really bad spy novel, Trump critics appear to be slipping secret messages in their resignation letters. But put away that decoder ring: the code has been cracked.
The latest to telegraph a hidden message is Berkeley professor Daniel Kammen, who announced Wednesday he’s calling it quits as a science envoy for the State Department.
Like others who have resigned from government advisory councils in recent days, Kammen accused Trump of not adequately calling out white supremacists after the violence in Charlottesville.
“My decision to resign is in response to your attacks on core values of the United States,” Kammen said. “Your failure to condemn white supremacists and neo-Nazis has domestic and international ramifications.”
But look closely. The first letter of each paragraph spells out: I-M-P-E-A-C-H.
Kammen isn’t the first Trump critic to resign in code.
Last week, members of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities – who were holdovers from the Obama administration – announced a mass exodus in response to Trump’s Charlottesville reaction.
One member, Kal Penn, the “Harold Kumar Go to White Castle” star who briefly worked in the Obama White House, posted the group’s joint resignation on Twitter.
The first letter of each paragraph in the memo spelled out “R-E-S-I-S-T.”
Kammen said Wednesday he agrees “with the unequivocal and authoritative statements” on Charlottesville from a variety of people, including Democratic Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Republican Ohio Gov. John Kasich. He also cited controversial Muslim activist Linda Sarsour, who made news in July for suggesting that resisting Trump is a “form of jihad.”
During a rally in Arizona on Tuesday night, the president continued to defend his reaction to the events in Charlottesville. The president has faced criticism for blaming “both sides” for the unrest where a counter-protester was killed in a car attack.
Trump has blamed the media for the backlash to his response, saying the media made it sound like he hasn’t condemned racists and white supremacists.
“Did they report that I said that racism is evil?” Trump asked of the media. The crowd yelled, “No!”
“You know why?” Trump asked. “Because they are very dishonest people.”