The Republican Party condemns itself completely

I guess not. Because in that system, we don't say, "He's clearly guilty, so let's let him go."

I guess not. Because in that system, we don’t say, “He’s clearly guilty, so let’s let him go.”

Well, the thing that we knew would happen happened Saturday.

I guess those in charge of the proceedings figured there was no point in dragging it out. Trump’s guilt of an unforgivable act was completely and unquestionably proved. But they knew the Republicans — most of them — were determined to endorse his evil, and would do so no matter how much evidence was presented. For that matter, why was evidence necessary at all? All of them had been there when it happened. And of course, some of them were accomplices.

So that’s that.

A few things to point out, and I’ll leave it with y’all:

  • There’s no question what should happen now: Every one of these people who voted to acquit should resign immediately, admitting their betrayal of the country, and not one of them should ever be allowed to hold an office of public trust in the future. Of course, they won’t resign, and most will run again in the future, and considering the extent of the sickness in the places where they come from, many will be re-elected. So we’ll just have to deal with the insanity, for many years to come. So, for the rest of my life, this country won’t be the one I lived in before 2016. That’s just the way things are.
  • This was it, you see, the big moment for the GOP to redeem itself by putting Trumpism behind it. But instead, 86 percent of Republican senators decided, Hey, let’s do this some more! They have condemned themselves completely, and unforgivably.
  • Oh, wait, do you doubt Trump’s guilt? Then you’re nuts. Listen to the chief of the acquittal crowd, Mitch McConnell: He said the insurrectionists attacked the Capitol on Jan. 6 “because they had been fed wild falsehoods by the most powerful man on Earth, because he was angry he lost an election.” He said, “There’s no question — none — that President Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day… No question about it.” And he voted to acquit anyway. Why? I’d tell you, if I heard anything that remotely sounds like a reason.
  • OK, let’s quote something he did say: “This body is not invited to act as the nation’s overarching moral tribunal.” No, that is exactly what you were “invited” to do. In fact, it’s the least you could have done. It is exactly what duty required of you, when asked whether to condemn the actions of “the most powerful man on Earth,” who was “practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day.” Let’s quote what another idiot, Marjorie Taylor Greene, said: “The Trump loyal 75 million are watching.” Absolutely. They were watching as you gave your stamp of approval for all that they have wrought. It was clearly, unquestionably your duty to give them the opposite message.
  • Trump lost the vote by 57 to 43. That means he lost by an even larger percentage than he lost the popular vote. But it was almost a perfect match for the proportion by which he lost the electoral vote. And contrary to what he and his mindless followers believe, he was soundly beaten in the election. Unfortunately, 57 percent is not enough for conviction for impeachment. We could argue about whether it should be or not. But the rules are the rules — although you’ll never persuade the Trump crowd of that.
  • Nancy Pelosi called McConnell et al. “cowards” for not joining the 57 who did what was clearly the right thing. She’s right about some of them. Others are worse than cowards: They’re actually on Trump’s side. If you wanted to know what percentage were cowards, and what percentage were evil, stupid or insane (whichever you think applies best to Trumpism), we’d have to get everyone to forget this vote for a moment, and have an anonymous one — then compare the numbers.
  • What happens now? Well, the good man who is now our president will continue trying to lead the country the best he can — and he’s been doing really well up to now. He’ll have to do it even though millions of Americans are lunatics, and that 43 percent of what was once the “world’s greatest deliberative body” just loudly endorsed their lunacy.

Anyway, that should be enough to get everybody started…

 

43 thoughts on “The Republican Party condemns itself completely

  1. Scout

    Take 2 in the right place this time….

    So with a bipartisan majority -and likely more based on McConnell’s and a few others statements – feeling that Trump was responsible for inciting the insurrection, could they do a resolution invoking the 14th amendment to prevent him from running again?

    Reply ↓

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  2. David L Carlton

    Actually, the closest thing to an argument *I* heard from McConnell was his evocation of Joseph Story to contend that impeachment and conviction can only be justified on the narrowest of grounds (I’d be interested in hearing an opinion from a competent constitutional scholar). He read that as limiting the remedy to halting an *ongoing* abuse of power; punishment after the fact is insufficient justification. Since Trump, as a *now-former* chief executive, isn’t engaged in an ongoing abuse, it made no sense to pursue conviction (eliding the fact that McConnell himself delayed the trial beyond the period in which he considers it justified). A sort of plausible argument, if you don’t think that setting a precedent of trying to overturn an election and getting away with it isn’t an “ongoing abuse.”

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    1. Brad Warthen

      It also assumed that the danger doesn’t still exist, which it does. Trump has created a huge mass of angry, delusional people out there — we can’t forget that. Republican members, fearing them, keep doing the will of that mob.

      That mob didn’t go “POOF” and disappear on Inauguration Day, and it won’t for some time to come, no matter what abstractions Mitch weaves…

      Reply
      1. bud

        Trump didn’t create delusional people, they’ve always existed. But he certainly gave them more power. He set back race relations 60 years.

        Reply
        1. Bob Amundson

          White boomers, regardless of political persuasion, seem to believe the end is near. The doom and gloom thinking of our entitled elderly is nothing new – I experienced it with my grandparents many years ago.

          I choose “Hope Springs Eternal.”

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          1. Brad Warthen Post author

            I’m not sure I understand what you’re saying about “white boomers.”

            I suspect that, if I were someone who identified as a member of a demographic group, I’d be insulted. But since I’m not, what me worry?

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  3. Dave Crockett

    I e-mailed both Lindsay Graham and Tim Scott this morning to express my shame and disappointment with their cowardice in the face of overwhelming evidence in the impeachment trial. *sigh*

    Reply
      1. Barry

        for 4 years Tim Scott was regrettably aggrieved with Trump using words that were less than uplifting. He was so aggrieved he would make an occasional appearance on Fox to very gently and respectfully suggest Trump consider using more gentle phrasing.

        Tim wasn’t as diplomatic with ANYONE else outside of the Trump cult.

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  4. Mark Stewart

    I’m just waiting for Lindsey to be indicted by Georgia for election interference. That seems more certain today. He would deserve it, all the way to conviction and removal from the senate. Haley must have his seat in her sights, why she went after Trump last week; it would be the perfect perch for a 2024 Presidential run.

    Scott’s problem is he is up for election now and he was trapped by the lunacy of the SC GOP. That said, he showed his true colors; he is a coward.

    Mitch McConnell, however, is the one who will have a minor historical passage in the chapter on Trump. History will be almost as unkind to him as to Trump, but he will deserve the condemnation even more. McConnell knew better, and yet he persisted in partisan pandering. Trump will be our worst president ever (God I hope) and McConnell will be remembered as one of the most corrosive senatorial forces. Certainly he has killed the Republican party as it existed since WWII. Whatever it will become it won’t be the GOP anymore; not in the Senate and certainly not in the House. The only redeeming fact to come out of January 6th was that, shockingly, McCarthy actually stood up to Trump for once – on the record as it were.

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  5. Barry

    Senators voting to impeach represent 61.6% of Americans (202 million)

    Senators voting to acquit represent 38.2% of Americans (125 million)

    Via @atausanovitch

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  6. Doug Ross

    The New York Times, using anonymous sources, pushed a narrative that Capitol Police office Sitnick was killed by blunt force trauma from a fire extinguisher on Jan 6. Now they have issued a retraction because it has become obvious that was untrue. He died that day of a stroke, later in the day, after returning to work and texting his brother in law that he was fine. But the damage is already done in terms of the public perception that fuels the anger.

    Anonymously sourced stories pushed to meet a politically biased agenda have destroyed all the credibility the media ever may have had. The House Managers even used the debunked “very fine people” lie to try and make their weak case against Trump. Anyone who continues to say that Trump called white supremacists “very fine people” (and that includes Biden) is either a fool or a liar.

    Much like the anonymous commenters/trolls on this blog who repeat the lies they are fed from their biased sources, the media bares responsibility for the tone of discourse. If you can’t own your opinion, you’re a sad human being.

    So in the end, Trump was impeached but acquitted TWICE. Once for a phone call and the second time for using the word “fight”. What a waste of time… He’s gone. The boogie man went back in the closet. You can all find a new imaginary monster to be afraid of.

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    1. Bob Amundson

      Facts – impeached twice, and for the first time ever, a bipartisan majority voted to convict the second. Doesn’t sound imaginary to me, but you are entitled to your opinion – and that’s all this is, a discussion of opinions. These types of discussions should be civil, as most are.

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      1. Bob Amundson

        My opinion is that many smart people are working to make sure the Trump controlled faction of the Republican Party becomes irrelevant. The political process of impeachment is just the beginning, and now comes the criminal phase; watch New York and Georgia.

        Speaking of New York, where I do business, Governor Cuomo is in trouble. As he was preaching follow the facts, he conveniently avoided the facts about nursing home deaths.

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        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          It will be a miscarriage of justice for Trump to go to jail for tax violations or something of that kind after trying to overthrow the government.

          He needs to be convicted for the unforgiveable thing he did, not for something inconsequential.

          This gets into an area we’ve discussed before… I’m not someone terribly interested in punishment. I just want the system to work. I don’t care whether Trump goes to jail, or spends the rest of his life in tawdry luxury. I just want the system to officially condemn him for doing what he did. Period.

          Nothing will cure Trumpism but its absolute rejection by its elected mind-slaves. That didn’t happen…

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          1. Brad Warthen Post author

            Oh, and yes: I do embrace the good things that happened.

            I embrace the fact that the votes for impeachment and for conviction were more bipartisan than any in history. That’s good. But this is a situation unlike any in history, and the Congress needed to act like it. Most Republicans did not…

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            1. Brad Warthen Post author

              And for further examination of the good side of all this, I refer you to E.J.’s column today, “The beginning of the end of Trumpism.”

              I cited it on Twitter earlier today:


              By the way, I’m citing a quote there from the end of his piece. I just couldn’t use quote marks because I had to leave out a couple of words to make it fit…

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          2. Doug Ross

            “overthrow the government”

            Good one! Using that language is what brought us to the point we are at. The protestors only delayed a vote, and had no intent nor capability of overthrowing the government. Trump gave no direction to invade the capitol building and his rhetoric was equivalent to similar statements made by all sorts of Democrats during the BLM riots. Members of Congress, including the current VP, urged people to fight, confront innocent people on the streets, loot and burn stores… On the grand scale of things, this event was less than Kent State.

            Meanwhile, during an election held during a pandemic where the voting rules were changed on the fly in the final weeks, the suggestion that illegal voting activity could have occurred is considered treasonous. And, interesting enough, now that California residents are submitting petitions to recall Newsom, NOW they want to check signatures and are claiming fraud. To be a Democrat is to be a hypocrite every single day.

            Still waiting on Joe to wake up and do something that he promised to do “day one”. Kids still in cages? Yep – and AOC doesn’t appear to be heading down there to cry again. Student loans forgiven? Nope. COVID relief? Nothing yet. Oval Office redecorated? Mission Accomplished! Jill Biden placing big hearts on the White House lawn for Valentines Day? Success!

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            1. Mark Stewart

              Doug, Voting regulations were changed to reflect the reality of the pandemic.

              The idea we should most value is that everyone has the opportunity to vote. Voting needs to be an expansive right.

              Reply
                1. Brad Warthen Post author

                  No, I’m not mocking what you said. I’m mocking myself for misreading it.

                  The first time I looked, I thought, “Mark wants voting to be an expensive right? Why?!?”…

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              1. Doug Ross

                Yes, and there’s ZERO chance those changes opened up any opportunity for bad behavior? None? Every ballot mailed in was legit.

                But then I think you still fall in the camp that believed Russia somehow stole the election for Trump in 2016, right? Or have you given up on that fallacy?

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                1. Brad Warthen Post author

                  Just to help Mark out…

                  “Yes, and there’s ZERO chance those changes opened up any opportunity for bad behavior? None? Every ballot mailed in was legit.” Yeah, pretty much. People sent Trump hundreds of millions of dollars to fight the “steal,” and he and Rudy couldn’t come up with anything — they got laughed out of court after court — so yeah. It was legit. And it wasn’t particularly close.

                  “But then I think you still fall in the camp that believed Russia somehow stole the election for Trump in 2016, right? Or have you given up on that fallacy?” Of course, you always put it in words where it seems particularly absurd to you and Donald Trump, but again, yeah. It was the conclusion of every one of our 17 intelligence agencies that yep, Russia decided to launch a bot operation to try to help Trump, and to the Russians’ shock and everyone else’s, he won. And he just barely, barely won, so every little bit helped. Everything else you might say is quibbling.

                  Oh, and if you remain as confused as you seem to be every time you mention this (which is a LOT, just in case you’re really interested in people being obsessed with something), what the Russians did was jump with both feet into the morass of fake news and social-media-fed division — the thing I’ve been writing about lately — to see if they could take a VERY bad situation and make it a little worse. That’s what happened. And it’s very weird that you find it odd that people who care about this country are concerned about that…

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                    1. Bob Amundson

                      Classic deflection. Did they do it or not? Humor me with your opinion. You are by far the smartest man on this blog, and I need to know!

                    2. Doug Ross

                      You deflect and I’m the one deflecting? What does it have to do with the 2016 election? Did Russia win it for Trump? What say you, Bob?

                    3. Bob Amundson

                      I say the Russians are always trying to influence politics; they are bad actors and should not be ignored.

                  1. Doug Ross

                    Yeah, Brad, can you point me to a single vote that was changed by those nefarious Russian bots posting weird memes on Facebook? Point me to the specific votes that can be PROVEN that Russia flipped from Hillary to Trump in quantities large enough to flip the election.

                    I’ll wait.

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                    1. Doug Ross

                      Using your logic, if you can’t prove the votes were influenced, they didn’t happen. You’re no better than Guiliani.

                      Speaking of Rudy, this is what I wrote about him on your blog in 2007..

                      :Doug Ross
                      August 14, 2007 at 9:43 pm
                      After listening to Rudy’s simplistic and yet ridiculous explanation of how poor people will be able to afford insurance because the cost will go down like TV’s and Ipods, I was embarrassed for him.
                      He’s so full of crap, it’s not even funny.
                      His shtick may work in NYC, but people across the U.S. will see through his act pretty quickly. He lacks depth, insight, and understanding. He’s running on a persona established after 9/11.
                      I didn’t think we could have a President worse than Bush, but I think Rudy might make a really good attempt at it.”

                      I was right about him and Lindsey.

          3. Barry

            On Sirius radio today, Fox News legal analyst Andrew McCarthy (former US Assistant Attorney General for the Southern District of New York) stated that he would have charged Trump with dereliction of duty and that he thought it was an impeachable offense.

            He mentioned that Trump wasn’t a member of the Armed Forces but as Commander in Chief, a charge of dereliction in an impeachment trial would have been easier to prove against Trump and he thought it would have been harder for Republicans to defend Trump against it.

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            1. Barry

              BTW- McCarthy stated that Trump’s inaction as the assault was actually happening on the capitol was the most material fact in the entire mess and is the basis of his stated dereliction of duty charge.

              – which McCarthy stated was an impeachable offense in his opinion.

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              1. Bob Amundson

                He is a POS that almost forced our military to show superior force and hurt a bunch of idiots. Part of me wanted that herd thinned, but the nice part of me is grateful the good guys won with little bloodshed. I had a wonderful discussion about this with a retired Army Officer who is teaching Military History at the University of Alabama; there are lots of smart people that will only let this BS go so far.

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                1. Bob Amundson

                  It’s the 1860s revisited. A bunch of rich, older white men wanting to stay in power, who enable the lower educated, poorer, younger white (mostly) men to do their dirty work.

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  7. bud

    Before the election I was genuinely conflicted as to whether Trump or Dubya was the more terrible POTUS. Dubya earned “high” marks for lying us into war and mishandling Katrina. And terrible economic policies. Trump “scored” big for his horrendous handling of COVID and for his divisiveness. The later creating a culture of racism and religious bigotry. He is also the first president since Hoover to leave office with a net loss in jobs. It was a tough call. But the weeks following the election put Trump in a unique category of awful. His whining constantly about the election that culminated in his call for storming the capitol demonstrated for all the world to see just what a grave danger this man poses for the very survival of this country as we know it. In spite of his many, many, many flaws Dubya never threatened the existence of our sacred American institutions. For that reason Trump stands alone as the worst POTUS in American history.

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