GOP Civil War
Mike Luckovich editorial cartoon
For over three decades now, the GOP has courted the likes of Pat Robertson and his followers. In addition to 15-passenger van, denim skirt-wearing religious fundamentalists and snake handlers, they…
Here are the 18 senators, all Republicans, who voted against the final deal to end the shutdown and avert a debt default.
Republican Sens. Tom Coburn (Okla.), John Cornyn (Texas), Mike Crapo (Idaho), Ted Cruz (Texas), Mike Enzi (Wyo.), Chuck Grassley (Iowa), Dean Heller (Nev.), Ron Johnson (Wis.), Mike Lee (Utah), Rand Paul (Ky.), Pat Roberts (Kansas), Jim Risch (Idaho), Marco Rubio (Fla.), Tim Scott (S.C.), Jeff Sessions (Ala.), Richard Shelby (Ala.), Pat Toomey (Pa.), David Vitter (La.).
— Jennifer Bendery
Feel free to send them hate mail.
CulturePOLITICS: The Shame of the GOP
They tried to tank the country. They lost. America won. Let the shame roll down.
You mean “let the shame trickle down”.
Conservatives have gained, if nothing else, some helpful data:
1. Cruz and Lee have no plan to advance the party’s or country’s interests. They are opportunists.
2. Those who followed them were either gullible or ill-intentioned.
3. The right-wing flacks in the media who helped bring about this calamity either don’t understand governing or don’t care.
4. Heritage Action is in the business of making money and/or purging the party of anyone with common sense, not in achieving conservative ends.
5. As a result, Republicans who want to win elections and advance conservative principles should disregard everyone mentioned in items one through four.
6. The people — in the Senate, House, governor’s mansions and media – who tried to steer the party clear of the fiasco might just have a better grip on things than those in categories one through four.
We don’t know whether an earlier confrontation with the hard right in the House would have spared the party and the country this agony, whether the speaker had more support from moderates than the prolonged struggle suggested and whether the persuadable donors, elected officials, activists and candidates will follow the lead of those in categories one through four or those in six.
See, if we don’t remember exactly who did what in this sorry affair, Republicans are likely to go on trusting those in categories one through four and disregarding the advice and leadership of those in six. This is why ignoring the real damage and the actual mendacity associated with this episode is a very, very bad idea.
The party needs to steer clear of charlatans, stop disregarding evidence of what actual voters want and figure out how to advance their policy goals and electoral interests. That’s not going to happen if we give those in categories one through four a pass and fail to appreciate those in category six.
It’s too late. They flunked hostage-taking. About 30 or so Republicans in the House, bunkered in gerrymandered districts while breathing the oxygen of delusion, are now part of a cast of miscreants who have stood firmly on the wrong side of history. The headline, today and 50 years from now, will be the same: Republicans closed the government to keep millions of their fellow Americans from getting affordable health care.
They are not righteous rebels or principled provocateurs. They are not constitutionalists, using the ruling framework built by the founders. Just the opposite: they are a militant fringe of one party in one house of Congress in one branch of government trying to nullify an established law by extortion. This is not the design of the Constitution.
Public Policy Polling did a survey on the preponderance of belief in conspiracy theories among American voters, and the results are telling. For example, a question was posed about whether the respondents believe the Obama administration is coming to take their guns away, and 62% of Republicans answered “Yes.” If you know five Republicans, that means three of them believe this, and a fourth has doubts. This, despite the fact that no gun legislation of any impact whatsoever has shadowed the president’s desk since he took office.
When asked if they believe that Mr. Obama is secretly plotting to remain in office when his term expires, 44% of Republicans answered “Yes.” If you know five Republicans, that means two of them believe this, and a third is halfway convinced. This, despite any supporting evidence whatsoever, and the fact that the man will be arrested and detained if he tries to enter the White House again after the inauguration in January of 2017.
When asked if Muslims are working to implement Sharia Law in America - the harshly medieval seventh-century Islamic code best represented by the Taliban in Afghanistan, the Wahabists in the ranks of al Qaeda and (shhhh) a significant portion of the rebels in Syria - 44% of Republicans said it was true. If you know five Republicans, once again, two of them believe this, and a third is halfway convinced. Um…how? Where? In what way? Because women can now get free contraception and gay people have the same rights as you do? You think the Taliban is down with that?
Is the US government secretly staging “false flag” mass shootings all across the country in order to blame others and distract the country from their gun-grabbing, office-staying, Sharia-implementing ways? A full 26% of Republicans believe this, so if you know five of them, one is convinced of this, and another is well on his way. I’m sure all the left-leaning folks who believe that 9/11 was a Cheney-orchestrated “inside job” are thrilled to know their gospel has been co-opted by people who think 26 children were massacred in Connecticut so Mr. Obama could give everyone’s guns to the Syrians, because that makes sense, too, apparently. Or something.In short, and not to put too fine a point on it: if you know five Republicans, two of them are around-the-bend crazy, and a third needs a stern talking-to. That’s not a majority, but it is pretty much half the crowd, and is a definite majority every time the crazy two convince the third to go their way, you know, just in case.
"Meet the 8 men who just put 800,000 people out of work. They have a net worth of $119,003,347" #shutdown