Living Large In Carson City: What Will It Take? Edition

“In politics stupidity is not a handicap.”
Napoleon Bonaparte

And the hits just keep on coming . . . Week two of the public impeachment inquiry and things just keep getting more bizarre. Devin Nunes and Jim Jordan are playing tag team inquisitors, a role neither man seems qualified to fulfill, let alone intelligent enough to pull it off. Late last week,  Roger Stone was found guilty on all seven counts brought against him stemming from the Mueller probe. As the evidence mounts, there just doesn’t seem to be much that can go right for the Republican Party and the merry band of idiots who lead them.

Then there is Donald Trump who took to Twitter to malign former Ukraine ambassador Marie Yovanovitch during her live questions calling her a failure wherever she was posted and coming perilously close to committing witness tampering, or at the least, intimidation. This is nothing new for the president, nor is it surprising. Considering how the Republicans have thus far controlled the national political narrative through lies and avoidance of the truth, which has allowed them to create a chaotic atmosphere across the nation, witness tampering is just one more egregious act from a corrupt presidency.

The real question is just how long the Republicans can continue playing ball in what is blatantly obvious a sham administration bent only on stroking the Orange One’s massive, if not pathetic, ego. Certainly, there is a plethora of Always Trumpers like his rabid base and useful idiots like Nunez and Jordan. Mitch McConnell has made it clear that impeachment proceedings will be dead on arrival, or at best, a truncated event meant only to give lip service to an already determined favorable outcome for the president.

One has to wonder, however, if there aren’t some within the Republican fold who want to see Trump gone as badly as the Democrats. Obviously, up until now, Trump’s real power lies not in his cherry personality or suave ability to lead and command, but in the fear he strikes into the heart of vulnerable Republicans up for reelection. The “primary” threat he tosses about as easily as he spews venom from his mouth carries real world weight when the rabid base is factored into the equation. That was then, however, this is now.

With the live impeachment hearings daily causing the Republicans headaches and bad cases of acid reflux, the tide of power may already be shifting. Suppose that a group of Senators read the mounds of evidence against Trump and decide to ban together to vote for impeachment. This would kill two birds with one stone. First, the fear of Trump’s power to influence primaries against recalcitrant Republicans would evaporate, but it would also bump the president from office where he would slither back under whatever rock he came from back in 2016. It defies logic that every member of the Republican Party is willing to knuckle under Trump’s power at the expense of the Constitution and the rule of law.

Americans, however, have seen even more outlandish occurrences. Who among sentient Democrats were not caught flat footed when the election results came in favorably for Trump back in 2016? Then it seemed like a bad acid trip gone horribly wrong even for a bad acid trip. Yet, four years later, the country has polarized even further than it was when Trump got elected. Yet, the facts bear out that much of that polarization is based, not on Trump solidifying and expanding his position, but rather, a growing exodus of disenchanted Independents and moderate Republican coming to their senses and forsaking the president. Recent electoral gains by the Democrats in state elections tell a story of awakening in the American heartland that will hopefully last through the 2020 election.

While the impeachment sideshow continues to gain the lion’s share of headlines, Trump and his band of pranksters continue dismantling the American democracy. He has to date confirmed 150 right wing radically, opinionated judges. His most recent, Steven  Menashi, is a former White House council who served under Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. He had a hand in denying students remittance from for profit colleges that landed his boss DeVos in hot water for ignoring orders to move forward to negate the student’s loan debts. Susan Collins crossed party lines to vote against the nominee stating,

“Mr. Menashi was so poorly qualified, he lacked the basic temperament for this position that I voted not even to proceed with debate on his nomination,” she said. “His past writings, particularly about LGBTQ individuals and advocates, about women, about diversity raise questions whether he would rule fairly.” USNews 

And this from Chuck Schumer,

Democrats’ concerns extended beyond Menashi’s work with Devos. In particular, they lamented that he’s helped guide the administration’s anti-immigrant agenda alongside Stephen Miller, a senior adviser to the president.

“His record on race, women’s equality, LGBTQ rights and the rights of immigrants should be disqualifying,” Schumer said. “At the Department of Education, he helped cook up an illegal scheme to use the Social Security data of students swindled by for-profit colleges in order to deny them debt relief.”

“A candidate for a judgeship should show respect for the law,” he said. “That’s the lowest possible bar.” USNews

And most of theses judges are appointed for life. Yet, judges are only a small part of a larger equation of subversion and annulment of basic American rights. The aftermath of the impeachment inquiry and possible articles of impeachment will have a far reaching effect on the American psyche for decades to come. The Republican Party faces a very real prospect of sliding into ignominy across the country. If the Democrats can pull their shit together and actually mount a real and viable campaign to drive the Trump administration out of office, still, it will take a huge win in the popular vote.

A win of  that magnitude would surely further divide Always Trumpers and the rest of the country to the point of straining our country’s ability to survive.  America would survive, but at what cost. The prospect of living again in a Trumpless world is tantalizing beyond belief for most Americans. Yet, America can’t expect there not to be repercussions from radicalized white people afraid for their continued relevance in a multiculturally changing United States. Evangelicals, contrary to their god’s teachings, are spreading rumors of civil war and the doom of god’s wrath being rained down on everyone’s heads who refuse to back Trump and his mission of failure.

If the stakes weren’t so high and important, the situation America finds itself in on the cusp of 2020 is comically ridiculous beyond belief. Who would believe that the America Barack Obama left us has been pissed into the wind so quickly and with unbridled enthusiasm under the Republicans’ reign of mediocrity? Granted, Obama wasn’t everything the country needed or wanted, but at least, he took responsibility for his actions. Trump seems incapable of owning his mistakes, or admitting that they are even mistakes.

As the live impeachment hearings continue to roll out official after official implicating Donald Trump of high crimes and misdemeanors, America waits. There seems little anyone can do but weather the storm and hope for sunlight on the other side. If not sunshine, at least some form of cleansing from the past four years that will make the phrase “Proud to be an American” a true statement again. Is there anyone who doesn’t think that will be a heavy lift? Where is Arnold when you need him?

 

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