In a column for the conservative Bulwark, founder and editor-at-large Charlie Sykes pummeled member of his own party who are more than aware that Donald Trump is a disaster and unqualified to be president and yet refuse to do or say anything about it out of fear for their jobs.
Under a headline that reads, "The Gospel According to Mad King Donald" Sykes expressed disgust with Republican leadership and the rank and file, saying that standing by while Trump runs roughshod over presidential norms and basic civility demonstrates how callow they are deep down.
Addressing Trump's appearance at the National Prayer breakfast and a later address to the nation, Sykes wrote, "What America saw on Thursday was Trump in full. There was no expression of regret, no grace notes, no appeals to the better angels of our nature. Instead we got a raw, bitter, unhinged rant of crazy. Two of them, in fact. And it was all perfectly on brand."
"Trump is a man unconstrained by the demands of decency or conscience, logic or consistency, and he clearly revels in the license these freedoms afford him," he continued. "However feckless some of his former aides may have been, it is clear that Trump now occupies a world in which no one tells him no, or cautions him against improprieties, or urges graciousness, or pleads with him to be presidential, or responsible, or even coherent."
"Trump described his enemies as evil, corrupt, leakers, liars, lowlifes, sleazebags, and dirty cops. 'Adam Schiff is a vicious, horrible person,' Trump told his eager minions. 'Nancy Pelosi is a horrible person,'" Sykes recalled. "It was a pure Trumpian stream of consciousness: self pity, bitterness, Lisa Page and Peter Strzok, sniffs, anger, mockery, self pity, James Comey, sniffs, the dossier, Hillary, Obama, conspiracy theories, Russia, self pity, Mitt Romney, payback, Hunter Biden, sniffs, insults, Robert Mueller, the FBI, bullshit, self pity… "
Noting that the president's theme for the day was "Trump as victim," Sykes turned his focus on his Republican enablers who stood by why he wallowed in his own victimhood.
"Trump’s assembled GOP followers loved it all. Trump’s casual cruelty and off-the-cuff vindictiveness is no longer a bug; it is the product differentiator, the special sauce, the killer app of Trumpism. It is precisely what his admirers cling to most fervently. Many of them no longer even try to pretend that they are loyal to his policies, rather than his person," Sykes wrote. "Perhaps this is what was more revealing than Trump’s own bizarre performance. The worst part of Thursday’s festivities, remarked CNN’s Chris Cillizza 'had nothing to do with Trump. Instead, it was the audience who egged him on, laughed at his jokes and applauded his appalling lack of human decency.'"
'From the handful of Republican senators who had admitted that Trump had engaged in serious, if not impeachable, misconduct—only to have him stand in front of the world and dispute their mealy-mouthed contentions, we heard . . . nothing. Not one of them pushed back on his comments," he added before concluding, "Men like Donald Trump always believe, at a molecular, evolutionary level, that silence equals consent.
And in this instance, he’s not wrong."
You can read the whole piece here.