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GOP 'tripled down' on Trump's 'toxicity' -- and 'it's making them all seem like lunatics': MSNBC's Heilemann
MSNBC's John Heilemann admonished Republicans for circling their wagons around Donald Trump before they even learn the full facts about what top-secret documents he squirreled away at Mar-A-Lago.
Republicans had been cruising toward a congressional majority, but the overturning of Roe v. Wade protections, the Uvalde school shooting and the Jan. 6 committee hearings have dealt the GOP a series of setbacks, and the "Morning Joe" political analyst was baffled by their continued defense of Trump's corruption and extremism.
"You decide that when Donald Trump is investigated by the FBI and the [Department of Justice] for potentially illegally taking top secret documents down to Mar-A-Lago," Heilemann said. "You rally around Trump, without knowing any of the merits of it. You have no idea whether there are nuclear secrets, you have no idea what the story is. You go blindly marching into a position where you're condemning the Federal Bureau of Investigation as the gestapo and saying we're in a totalitarian America -- Joe Biden is waging war, you could be next, right?"
"They have not just stuck with Trump," he continued. "They've tripled down on Donald Trump on a moment when Trump's toxicity is part of what's making it possible for Democrats to achieve what have otherwise been unthinkable, which is potentially having not just a decent but actually a good year in the midterms. It's amplifying the Trump factor, because it's making them all seem like lunatics to all of the swing voters who don't think the FBI is a totalitarian, the Stassi. I heard Newt Gingrich comparing it to the Stassi the other day."
"That kind of language, and the fact that Republicans in the media world and on Capitol Hill, have almost uniformly embraced it, is that really going to help the Republican Party and its electoral prospects just in the midterm elections?" Heilemann added. "I say, I can't, for the life of me, figure out how there would be a way that would be good for the Republican Party nationally."
Watch the video below or at this link.
08 17 2022 07 34 29 www.youtube.com
Former Republican political strategist Stuart Stevens on Wednesday sounded the alarm after Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) went down in resounding defeat in her primary race against a Trump-backed challenger.
Noting that Cheney had an exceptionally conservative voting record prior to her role on the House Select Committee investigating the January 6th Capitol attacks, Stevens argued that the Republican Party is no longer a party about policies or ideas.
"What we saw last night... in 2022 Cheney was drummed out of the Republican Party and had nothing to do with policy," he said during an appearance on CNN. "She supported Trump's policy, a conservative policy pretty much across the line to the extent there was a coherent policy. I think it's a big mistake if we make this too much about Trump because really this is about the complete abandonment of a Republican Party... abandoning the concept of what it means to operate within a democratic system."
Later in the conversation, Stevens elaborated on this claim and he said that American conservatives wanted to create a one-party state with sham elections like those in Viktor Orbán's Hungary.
"January 6th was not just an isolated event," he said. "It is part of a calculated, very patient effort by Republicans to change the way that we vote in America, change the way that we count votes in America, and they are doing that because they know that as America changes they are losing a majority support of Americans and they have to do something. It has become an autocratic party."
Watch the video below or at this link.
'It has become an autocratic party': Former GOP strategist sounds alarm after Liz Cheney's loss www.youtube.com
Cut the crap. There’s absolutely no question that the former president has been issuing threats since last week when federal agents searched his Florida home for secret government documents.
There’s no question that the Republicans have joined the effort with lightning-bolt rhetoric that makes political violence seem like a legitimate option after running out of all other legitimate options.
There’s no question that this rhetorical bile and grume is being swallowed whole by subterranean paramilitaries who thanks to Republicans' gun policy are heavily-armed and who have been prepared to accelerate an insurgency that’s been underway for many years.
The only question, to my way of thinking anyway, is whether respectable white people understand that the Republicans manufacture violence rather than preserve peace, as the party has claimed for years. Put a bit differently: Who do respectable white people fear more? White seditionaries or nonwhite democrats.
"People are so angry at what is taking place," Trump told Fox on Monday, as if he were merely a concerned citizen. "Whatever we can do to help — because the temperature has to be brought down in the country. If it isn't, terrible things are going to happen."
Again, cut the crap. We know who he is.
Let’s not pretend we don’t.
And let’s not pretend that political violence is working.
Trump crossed the line
Respectable white people are white people who care about their appearance of respectability – their social status – among other white people who also care about their ranking in society. Their opinions are key to GOP success in the midterms and any election. A turn toward violence by the Republicans risks pushing them away.
And once they turn, there’s no going back.
Respectable white people can tolerate pretty much anything on account of white power shielding them from the consequences of fascist politics. Even the hostile takeover of the US government might have been tolerable had it been bloodless, orderly and legal.
But for respectable white people, a lawful peace is more important than that, as a lawful peace is the preservation of a status quo that serves their interests.
Trump’s gambit has always been getting as many people as possible to believe that anything associated with the federal government, as well as the federal government itself, is so saturated with graft and corruption that anything’s permissible. What’s wrong with taking home a few “nuclear documents” if everyone else is doing it, too?
Selling government secrets, as treasonable as it is, might have been tolerable among the respectable white people. As long as the status quo remains established, selling government secrets could be respectably ignored, thus treated as just more partisan politics.
Trump, however, crossed a line.
There’s no going back
Respectable white people may think “government” is irredeemably corrupt. But such crass cynicism does not apply to law enforcement. As terrible as police can be, respectable white people will never shake off their basic faith in the institutions of law enforcement.
The day after the FBI searched Trump’s home, an Ohio man attacked a federal facility in Cincinnati with an AR-15. (He fled and was later killed by police.) The federal magistrate who signed off on the search warrant has been threatened with death. (His synagogue had to shut down temporarily.) The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security later issued a bulletin warning of an “unprecedented” volume of threats “against federal law enforcement, courts and government personnel and facilities,” according to CNN.
By attacking not only the FBI but all “federal law enforcement, courts and government personnel and facilities,” according to CNN, Trump and the Republicans threaten the institutions of law enforcement that were erected to preserve America’s original racial order. By threatening “law and order,” they’re threatening white power itself.
Post columnist Catherine Rampell was correct when she said last week that the Republicans, by attacking law enforcement, even doxxing individual agents, are no longer the party of “law and order.”
But let’s be clear.
“Law and order” was code for the preservation of America’s original racial order, which serves respectable white people. By attacking law enforcement, by attacking the interests that the rule of law protects, the Republicans are no longer the party of respectable white people.
And there’s no going back.
To normal people, the search of a former president’s home may have been shocking, but it’s understood that the search was not an end. It is the beginning of a legal process that may or may not end with an indictment. Indeed, the odds of indictment are still rather slim.
But to Trump and the Republicans, the search was an end itself.
It was what Trump and his advisers wanted when trying to deny the democratic will and keep Trump in the White House. Just say the election was corrupt, Trump told senior officials in the Justice Department, and leave the rest of me and the House Republicans.
Ditto for Ukraine. Just say Biden is corrupt. Leave the rest to me. Ditto for 2016. Just say Hillary’s corrupt. Leave the rest to me.
In Clinton’s case, former FBI Director James Comey didn’t just say Hillary Clinton was reckless with government documents. He launched an investigation. Trump and his aides interpreted that as proof of guilt. With Russian allies, they killed off her candidacy.
So when the FBI searched Trump’s home, he found himself where his enemies had been. Knowing that smears work, Trump naturally turned to violence. The closer law enforcement gets to him, the more desperate he’ll become. The more desperate he becomes, the more blood there will be. Violence, just as it was in the waning days of his presidency, is his final option. Democracy has nothing to offer him.
This link between violence and democracy suggests that the end is coming, though when and how precisely I have no idea. Trump and his followers believe they have no choice but to act violently but once they commit to violence that belief becomes a fact. And facts stick.
It’s unusual – well, it’s never happened – for a former president to find himself at odds with a lawful peace, a status quo preserving the original racial order and the interests of respectable white people.
The only question is when they finally see it.