Video: John Lithgow Recites Poem About the ‘Virus, Infecting the Health of the Nation’

Warner Brothers Burbank Studios

Actor John Lithgow recited a poem lambasting the Trump administration Thursday, seemingly inspired by outgoing Labor Secretary Alex Acosta’s past legal deal with embattled billionaire sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Lithgow’s poem surfaced on Twitter Thursday. In it, he used Acosta – who has been at the center of the Epstein firestorm due to the plea deal he reached with the sex offender a decade ago – as a vehicle to bash the Trump administration and the “virus infecting the health of the nation” brought on by what the Pet Cemetery star says is “a toxic and foul combination of money, perversion, and power.”

Here is the poem’s transcript in its entirety:

Alexander Acosta was doing just fine
In his comfortable Cabinet post.
Lucky for him, the Department of Labor
Got far less attention than most.

Dumpty’s first pick for Acosta’s position
Could hardly have been more obtuse:
Andy Puzder, renowned for his cheeseburger porno
And rumors of spousal abuse.

Puzder was dumped in a clumsy debacle
That pummelled the bumbling potus.
So Acosta, an amiable U.S. Attorney,
Drew virtually no public notice.

Scaramucci, Reince Priebus, Sean Spicer, and Bannon
Were fired or forced to resign.
Fifty others all shared the same infamous fate,
Yet Acosta was doing just fine.

But a ten-year-old story leaked out from his past
And yanked him from placid obscurity.
His name was attached to a sickening scandal
that shook his serene job security.

The law had caught up with a Palm Beach roué,
A man of luxurious means,
Charged with trafficking, pimping, procuring, and rape
Of dozens of underage teens.

He’d concocted a sexual pyramid scheme
Of unspeakable breadth and perversity,
Promising vulnerable, penniless girls
A route out of brutal adversity.

The perp, Jeffrey Epstein, deserved to be crushed
By Justice’s ruthless iron fist,
But the priciest lawyers that money could buy
Got him off with a slap on the wrist.

Life in prison? Oh, no. A mere thirteen months
In his own private wing of a jail,
With work-release privileges twelve hours a day
To relax and catch up on his mail.

In the history of flagrant miscarriage of justice,
No case is as lurid and stark.
And the terms of the deal were kept under seal
So the victims were kept in the dark.

Was a rigorous U.S. Attorney in charge?
Or a grovelling, feckless imposter?
In fact, he heads up your Department of Labor:
The amiable Alex Acosta.

A predator wed to a fawning enabler
Is a fellowship forged by the Devil.
Who would have thought such a partner in crime
Would ascend to the Cabinet level?

We are living, alas, in the Dumptyan Era
Where scandals erupt by the hour.
They stir a recurring and queasy sensation
A virus infecting the health of the nation,
Brought on by a toxic and foul combination
Of money, perversion, and power.

Acosta announced his resignation Friday, explaining that the Epstein fallout was taking away from the good work of the Trump administration’s Labor Department.

“I do not think it is right and fair for this administration’s Labor Department to have Epstein as the focus, rather than the incredible economy,” he said. “My point here today is we have an amazing economy and the focus needs to be on the economy job creation.”

Acosta cut a deal with Epstein during his time as a U.S. attorney in Miami, but he reportedly told the Trump team that he was told to back off Epstein, because he (Epstein) “belonged to intelligence.”

As the Daily Beast noted:

“Is the Epstein case going to cause a problem [for confirmation hearings]?” Acosta had been asked. Acosta had explained, breezily, apparently, that back in the day he’d had just one meeting on the Epstein case. He’d cut the non-prosecution deal with one of Epstein’s attorneys because he had “been told” to back off, that Epstein was above his pay grade. “I was told Epstein ‘belonged to intelligence’ and to leave it alone,” he told his interviewers in the Trump transition, who evidently thought that was a sufficient answer and went ahead and hired Acosta. (The Labor Department had no comment when asked about this.)

This is not the first time the Foot Loose actor has expressed disdain for the Trump administration. Lithgow recently participated in a surprise live-streamed play about the release of the Mueller report alongside left-wing celebrities Alyssa Milano, Mark Hamill, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Sigourney Weaver, Wilson Cruz, Joel Grey, Annette Bening, and Kevin Kline.

Lithgow is currently starring in the Broadway play Hillary and Clinton, which is reportedly wrapping up production one month early due to low ticket sales.


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