Navy Secretary touts importance of following ‘lawful order’ after being fired for undermining his boss

Navy Secretary Richard Spencer fired
Fired Navy Secretary Richard Spencer claims he was merely following “good, lawful order” when he snuck behind the back of his boss, Defense Secretary Mark Esper. (screenshots)

Unemployed Navy Secretary Richard Spencer — who was fired by Defense Secretary Mark Esper for insubordination — slammed President Trump, saying he made the wrong decision when he reversed the demotion of Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher, who was prosecuted for killing an ISIS terrorist.

“I don’t think [Trump] really understands the full definition of a warfighter,” Spencer told CBS News. “A warfighter is a profession of arms. And a profession of arms has standards that they have to be held to and they hold themselves to.”

Spencer was reacting to President Trump’s statement defending his decision to reverse Gallagher’s demotion.

“They wanted to take his [Trident] pin away,” Trump said. “I said, ‘You’re not going to take it away. He was a great fighter…We’re going to protect our warfighters.”

“Lawful order” advocate Richard Spencer then suggested that he did nothing wrong when he undermined his direct supervisor — Defense Secretary Mark Esper — while trying to contravene the orders of Esper’s boss, the president of the United States.

“What do I stand for as Secretary of the Navy? Good order and discipline of the United States Navy,” Spencer said. “That’s a prime tenet. Everyone should follow a lawful order. We have to have good order and discipline. It’s the backbone of what we do.”


(Source: CBS News)

Spencer came under fire over the weekend, when the New York Times reported that he had threatened to resign to protest Trump’s reversal of Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher’s demotion.

Spencer vehemently denied that he had threatened to resign, and insisted that he wanted to keep his job and continue working within the Trump administration.

Over the weekend, Spencer groveled for his job on Twitter, saying “I did not threaten to resign … I work at the pleasure of the President.”

Spencer also conceded that as president, Donald Trump is the undisputed commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces. It was that way under Barack Obama, and it’s the same under President Trump.

Spencer remarked: “The president of the United States is the commander-in-chief, and he’s involved in every aspect of the government. And he can make decisions and give orders as he deems appropriate.”

Shortly afterward, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper fired Spencer after learning that he had gone behind Esper’s back to contravene President Trump’s order to restore Edward Gallagher’s rank.

Once Esper learned of Spencer’s insubordination, he demanded Spencer’s resignation.

After getting fired, Spencer disingenuously claimed in his resignation letter that he could not “in good conscience obey an order that I believe violates the sacred oath I took.”

As BizPac Review reported, Eddie Gallagher was acquitted at trial for allegedly murdering an ISIS terrorist. However, he was convicted of a lesser charge in July 2019 for posing for a photo with the dead ISIS terrorist’s corpse.  Gallagher’s rank was reduced and his pay was docked $10,000.

President Trump — the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces — said Gallagher was a hero who killed a terrorist and should not be punished over an ill-advised selfie.

Bloomberg News’ policy to shield Dem candidates from bad press sends shockwaves

Samantha Chang

Senior Staff Writer
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Samantha Chang is a senior staff writer for BizPac Review. Based in New York City, she is a law school graduate and a financial editor.
Samantha Chang

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