Michael Steele, former chairman of the Republican National Committee, trashed the organization he once led over revelations that donor money was used to boost sales of Donald Trump Jr.’s new book.
The former RNC chair told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that he wasn’t a bit surprised by the reports, and said the GOP organization has been absolutely corrupted by President Donald Trump.
“Of course it was the RNC — SOBs,” Steele said. “Oh my god.”
“Look, let me just tell you how screwed up this is,” he continued. “Before I became national chairman, I had written a book on how the Republican Party can regroup after the 2008 shellacking, after the 2006, you know, bang-up at the polls, and move the party forward, and people looked at me and said, ‘How dare you write a book and try to profit off of the RNC.'”
“These days they’re just giving away $100,000 to the president’s son — are you kidding me?” Steele added. “This is the kind of internal corruption that people complained about inside the RNC for a long time, and then guys like myself and others come along and try to change the system. We get booted out, they reinstate it and go big and bold with it, and then to sit up and lie up front, ‘No, we didn’t do that,’ knowing that they’ve got to report it on the FEC report and when it comes out everybody in the world’s going to see it and they’re going to say, what is this $100,000 for? It’s just unbelievable.”
That money came from donors who want to elect GOP candidates in races all across the country, Steele said, but the RNC is using it to dole out favors to political insiders.
“Those are moms and dads, grandpas and grandmas, who write a check for $50, $100 to the RNC to help elect candidates,” he said, “not to go out and buy some dumb-behind book that nobody’s going to read, all right, and the fact of the matter is, it’s just — it’s incredible just the sheer corruption, top-down, throughout the RNC now, just been wholly owned as a subsidiary of the Trump Organization.”
“It’s not just the books, folks, it’s everything else,” Steele added. “It’s legal fees, it’s trips, it’s all kinds of expenses that the RNC is taking on, spending donor money to take care of the business of the Trump family and its organization. So I don’t want to hear the whining from the members anymore about where the money’s going and why candidates are running for county council and mayor in local races aren’t getting cash.”
Trump and the GOP have become the party of the dead
There are few morbid topics subject to greater speculation than the religious loyalty of President Donald Trump's "base." Why an alarmingly large amount of Americans refuse even to entertain any criticism of Trump deserves scrutiny from political scientists, psychologists and perhaps horror novelists working in the school of Edgar Allan Poe.
This article first appeared in Salon.
What is abundantly clear is that no matter who votes for Trump, he and the Republican Party on the national level have no interest in governing on the behalf of living human beings — with the exception of ensuring that a tiny minority of billionaires and multimillionaires enlarge their investment portfolios. Trump evinces no concern for Americans dying of the coronavirus, racist violence or any other malady or injustice. He demonstrates no regard for health care professionals courageously trying to save their patients from dying, and appears cruelly indifferent to the struggles of millions of workers whose livelihoods have been destroyed by COVID-19. Needless to say, Trump also shows contempt for Black Lives Matter, immigrants and anyone who opposes his re-election, which at this moment (and throughout his presidency) is more than half of the American public.
As coronavirus seizes the state, Florida hospitals are in panic mode
This article first appeared in Salon.
There are 47,663 hospital beds in the state right now with 11,782 available (meaning a remaining capacity of 19.82 percent) and a total staffed bed capacity of 59,445, according to the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration's Hospital Bed Capacity Dashboard. The state Department of Health also reported on Friday that, out of 95,300 individuals who received coronavirus test results over the course of the previous day, 11,433 tested positive for COVID-19 (all but 90 of whom were Florida residents), meaning that more than 12 percent of the new cases had positive test results. The state also reported 93 new deaths due to COVID-19. (Salon reached out to the Florida Department of Health for comment on this story.)
The GOP is a suicide cult
Welcome to another edition of What Fresh Hell?, Raw Story’s roundup of news items that might have become controversies under another regime, but got buried – or were at least under-appreciated – due to the daily firehose of political pratfalls, unhinged tweet storms and other sundry embarrassments coming out of the current White House.
Back in March, we argued that Donald Trump had become the charismatic leader of the dumbest suicide cult ever. There were fewer than 500 confirmed cases of Covid-19 at the time, but it wasn't difficult to see the trajectory we were on at even that early date. At the time, we were commenting on the President's* repeated claims that the whole thing was a big hoax and polls showing that Democrats were twice as likely as Republicans to say they were taking steps to avoid becoming infected.