What a horrible week to be a Republican. A week full of embarrassment and humiliation — as even most Republicans would agree.
First, there was the Republican “Presidential” Debate. The cringe-worthy “unmitigated disaster” showcased candidates bickering amongst themselves, spewing nonsense, apparently in hopes of getting a cabinet position in a Trump administration. Certainly they weren’t hoping to become President. Not one was willing to directly attack the missing-elephant-in-the-room and runaway leader of the pack. There was nary a mention of Trump’s legal troubles. Even Ron DeSantis admitted: “If I was at home watching that, I would turn the channel.”
Next up: The government shut-down. A group of MAGA Republicans in the House are holding the entire GOP (and the country) hostage — withholding approvals on what should be routine votes — not only willing to risk a shut-down but appearing to welcome one. Their actions are so immature and dangerous that Speaker-of-the-House McCarthy accused them of wanting to “burn the place down.”
Not satisfied with two humiliations, the GOP teed up a third: the Biden Impeachment hearings. Incredibly, at this self-inflicted wound, two of their star witnesses testified under the oath there was currently no evidence warranting an impeachment. But wait…there’s more: The lowlight of the day was when AOC revealed that Congressman Byron Donalds had fabricated an image he had presented earlier, falsely purporting to show evidence against Biden. One day into the so-called hearings and they’re already forced to make things up!
As if all of this was not enough, the GOP had to contend with their leading candidate for President advocating that Mark Milley, the retiring Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, be executed for treason. Which is why he now requires a security detail. The response from the GOP here was predictable: almost total silence. Oh, let’s not forget that Trump’s mountain of legal woes got higher this week: A judge ruled that Trump had committed financial fraud by having “lied to banks and insurers about his assets” for years. Added to this are his four pending indictments (with charges ranging from illegal retention of classified documents to attempting to subvert the 2020 election) as well as having been held liable for sexual assault. Yet none of this appears to present the slightest obstacle to the GOP lauding Trump as their preferred choice for President.
An outside observer assessing all of this could only reasonably conclude that the GOP was imploding. Unless they changed course, they were surely headed for a political shipwreck. How could anyone view it any other way? Apparently, if you’re Sean Hannity on FOX News, it’s quite easy. On his show this week, GOP impeachment leaders “offered false, baseless or debunked claims to which the Fox News host offered absolutely no pushback.” And the MAGA faithful that watch Fox News (and nothing else), lap it all up like a cat slurping cream. Which is why, incredibly, Trump and the GOP still have a path to victory in next year’s elections.
Welcome to America in 2024.
Democracy is on the ballot. It’s up to us to make sure it wins.