If it weren’t for Republicans trying to destroy the democratic ideals of the Constitution, all of this would be a comedy of errors, a satirical political movie filled with the absurd. But it’s very much real. When news broke last Saturday that Trump’s reign of terror was ending, the president was on a golf course that he owns in Virginia, playing his final round as a non-loser. In Washington, about 125 of his worshipful supporters gathered on the stoop of the Supreme Court to “stop the steal,” then circled the U.S. Capitol seven times, because that’s how the Israelites conquered Jericho, according to the Book of Joshua. And a pair of Trump’s most loyal surrogates made a defiant stand on the gravelly backside of a landscaping business (Four Seasons Total Landscaping that was likely mistakenly booked by the Trump campaign thinking it was the Four Seasons hotel). However, this Four Seasons is in an industrial stretch of Northeast Philadelphia, near a crematorium and an adult-video store called Fantasy Island, along State Road, which leads — as being associated with Trump sometimes does — to a prison. Trump’s campaign began on a golden escalator and ended in a dingy parking lot between a porn shop and a crematorium.
Republicans are backing Trump’s childish claims to make sure his voters in Georgia turn out for two Republican senators in the January 5 runoff election. For the next month and a half, Georgia is going to get nasty. The Republicans have already started their subversion of democracy. In Georgia, two GOP senators called on the state’s Republican secretary of state to resign, alleging irregularities and mismanagement without offering evidence. Only four of 53 Senate Republicans have congratulated Biden on his projected victory. Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin recently told reporters, “there’s nothing to congratulate [Biden] about,” while Missouri’s Roy Blunt said the president “may not have been defeated at all.” It’s the latest sign of the Republican Party destabilizing our democratic ideals and practices. The journey towards authoritarianism predates the Trump administration, but Trump has accelerated these efforts. Now, according to data released by an international team of political scientists just before the November 3 election, we know it’s possible to quantify the extent to which the Republican Party no longer adheres to principles of democracy, the rule of law, and their commitment to free and fair elections. Under Trump, they have abandoned respectful treatment of political opponents and the avoidance of violent rhetoric. The Republican Party under Trumpism is dangerously close to fascism.
Over the last few years, the willingness of many American voters to elect any clown with an R beside his or her name on a ballot, especially in my home state of Alabama and other solidly red states, has considerably dumbed down the already scarce pool of competent conservative candidates. But what I suspect is happening here is that this is merely another in a long line of absurd pandering from Republicans, hoping that fluff over substance will again win the day. When will Republicans in this country get tired of the constant bickering and nastiness? Many Democrats already have. Now, we are about to have a Democratic president who is agreeable to many people, especially blue-collar workers, because he’s promising to tone down the hatefulness and hostility, restore respect and decency to the White House, and be a president to all of America. Decency doesn’t keep the “oh my God, the liberal president is going to …” money rolling in.
Biden will very likely be a very popular president, even in very red places. It is clear to most voters that Biden won’t run for re-election so that he won’t be beholden to anyone. Republicans need a way to make Americans hate him. There’s a new day coming to America. There’s a chance for people to stop this insanity and put an end to the mind-numbing idiocy that has thrived in this country. We’re never going to agree on everything. Conservatives are still going to be conservative. Progressives are still going to be progressives. Moderates will still sway one way or another. But, hopefully, we can all agree that these sorts of stunts — in which elected officials blatantly lie and play upon phony emotion to sow division and anger — are intolerable. Because if these Trumpists are willing to lie to you about something as important and as sacred in this country as the election process, if they’re willing to undermine democracy and raise bogus questions about our elections, what won’t they lie about? What lie won’t they tell you to get your vote or your money? We all deserve better than this. And we should all demand it.
You got to know when to hold 'em,There are words of wisdom there for Donald Trump. He’s holding onto a hand that he’s going to lose. He needs to fold and walk away. A lot of Trump’s resistance is his overinflated ego, but I suspect he’s also scared. His creditors are about to call in his millions of dollars in debt. Four hundred million of which is about to come due, but Forbes estimates that he has a total debt of $1 billion.
Know when to fold 'em,
Know when to walk away,
And know when to run.
Clifford Berryman's cartoon depiction of Debs' 1920
presidential run from prison