Friday, October 26, 2018

A vote for a Republican is a vote for permanent institutionalized corruption

There was a time not so long ago when American politicians still put country above party and chose to work together to remove a corrupt president from office.  Those days are behind us.  Today, Republicans can't even summon the backbone to insist on a real investigation of credible charges of sexual assault before rubber-stamping the nomination of a president who has celebrated sexual assault to the Supreme Court.

The list of Donald Trump's egregious behaviors is so long, so blatant, and so well known that I feel as if I'm trying your patience by re-iterating it.  He associates with criminals—not metaphorical criminals but actual criminals.  Convicted felons.  He is openly and brazenly corrupt.  He shamelessly breaks the law, not in service of some greater good, but simply to be cruel, to assert his power, to separate innocent children from their parents.

If there was any doubt in your mind that there might be a line that Donald Trump could cross that would bring the Republicans' civil and patriotic instincts back from the grave, those should be laid to rest this week by Newt Gingrich, who said—almost in so many words—that putting a potential sex offender on the Supreme Court was worth it because Brett Kavanaugh would, if push comes to shove, shield Donald Trump from legal scrutiny.

Think about it: we know that some of the president's closest associates committed felonies.  What we don't know (yet) is how many more of the president's current associates (or members of his family) have committed felonies.  The reason we don't know is because the president has been doing everything he possibly can to block investigations into his business activities (to say nothing of his collusion with the Russians to win the election, which is a whole 'nuther can o' worms!)

It's pretty clear that if the Democrats don't take the House in the mid-terms (it's pretty much a foregone conclusion that they won't take the Senate) that we will never know.  On November 7, if the Republicans still control both houses of Congress, Donald Trump will shut down the Mueller investigation, and that will be that.  There will be wringing of hands and gnashing of teeth and possibly marches in the streets, but it will all be to no effect.  If Republicans are not willing to stand up to Trump now, they certainly won't be willing to do it after winning on November 6.

Even if the Dems take the House that will be no guarantee that Truth will prevail.  Newt Gingrich may well be correct that the fix is in.  Kavanaugh may well cast the deciding vote quashing the Democrats' (or, more accurately, the People's representatives) subpoena of Trump's tax returns.  But at least then the corruption will be laid bare for all to see, as it was in 2000 when the Supreme Court installed George W. Bush in the White House on party lines.  If the Democrats take the House, then American Democracy may stand a fighting chance.  If they don't, Donald Trump will have two years before the next election to cement his power with no effective oversight from either of the other two branches of government.  Two years to spread lies, to foment violence, to gerrymander, to purge voters, to rescind citizenships (even from people who were born in the U.S.), perhaps even to start imprisoning political opponents as he has often and prominently promised to do.

I don't see how we recover from that.


Peter Donis said...

> If the Democrats take the House, then American Democracy may stand a fighting chance.

While I agree with this, I would point out that a major reason Hillary Clinton lost in 2016 is that, to enough voters, she (and the wing of the Democratic party that supports her, and gave her the 2016 nomination over Sanders) also represents institutionalized corruption. So even if the Democrats take the House this year, they still need to fix that problem by finding a better candidate to run against Trump in 2020. (I'm assuming that Trump will be the Republican candidate, although that might not be a foregone conclusion if the Democrats take the House this year.)

Ron said...


I don't disagree, but given the seriousness of the situation, I think we need to deal with one problem at a time.