There is just so much to write about these days, but how do you stop writing about republican hypocrisy and the shallowness of their rhetoric? How can it be ignored by the republican electorate? While I’ve heard many republicans say that democrats are as bad as republicans, I truly believe that the GOP has cornered the market on hypocrisy. Corruption and scandal can be laid on the doorsteps of both parties, but hypocrisy seems to be a GOP monopoly. The shallowness of their rhetoric shouldn’t fool a child. Some examples in just recent days:
The nomination to the Supreme Court: Republicans have said that the Democratic efforts to stall this appointment are “unprecedented”. Seriously? I’d say what they did to Merrick Garland set precedent. During the hearings, republican senators have said that “Neil Gorsuch should be selected by unanimous vote. This is about the law and independent judges, not politics.” How hypocritical. If it wasn’t about politics, why didn’t they let Merrick Garland go through the appointment process? If it wasn’t political, why did dark money get poured by the millions into influencing his appointment? This was the first time in American history that ads ran on prime time television to support a nominee to the Supreme Court. Only the senate votes on this, so spending money to run prime time ads served what purpose that wasn’t political?
The AHCA: Every time a republican told us that this bill helps average Americans you had to stop from throwing up. How 24 million Americans losing coverage is helping is beyond anyone. That the bill returns hundreds of billions in tax cuts to the richest 2 percent and increases costs to everyone else is the most transparent lie. For a discussion on the actual details of the AHCA, see my previous article here. But for now, I just point out the hypocrisy of telling people they are going to be helped and maintaining that fiction while doing their best to hurt them. While the bill is on hold, it may be revived. More hypocrisy likely to follow.
White House procedures: Where to start? I guess with the email issue. Republicans made a major campaign out of Hillary Clinton’s use of an unsecured private email server. They said it was grounds for FBI investigation and charges of treason. Right now, White House senior staff and cabinet members are using unsecured private email servers. Next, how about leaking of information? When there were leaks about Hillary Clinton, the republicans said “Who cares where the information came from? Look at the information that was revealed!” Now that the leaks are about White House malfeasance, their only concern is how to catch the leakers. “Leaking is awful! They should be locked up! Don’t pay any attention to the content of the leaks!” Finally, the Hillary “pay-for-play” scandals that were relentlessly repeated in the campaign. The Trump family is doing “pay-for-play” at a higher order of magnitude than Hillary Clinton. One could reasonably complain about Hillary’s actions, but the Trump family is making nations pay to play, not just individuals. He put his own family in positions of tremendous power so that everyone can get into the act. During the campaign, Trump told Hillary Clinton to produce her tax returns, because he said this would prove she was crooked. She did release all her tax returns, back to 1977. Did he? He said he’d be too busy to vacation when he took office. He has gone on vacation almost every weekend. The president famously declared the media was fake because they would not quote sources. However his consistent behavior is to accuse everyone without quoting any sources. During the campaign, republicans said that “honest people are not under investigation by the FBI, and should not be president”. This is now true of Trump, but no republican sees this as a reason to step down. This is the most corrupt administration in modern history.
The Russian scandal: Hypocrisy is about doing yourself what you condemn in others. So to be fair, republicans are doing more lying than being hypocritical in this area. Most of what is going on here has simply never been done before. So for hypocrisy, there is telling the American public that you are a patriot while surrounding yourself with a glut of people who are deeply tied to America’s greatest foe. The shallowness of their response? “Paul Manafort was a minor figure.” Seriously? He was the campaign manager for almost half of the campaign. He ran the Republican National Convention. He was a long-time associate with Donald Trump for decades, and was part of the Trump transition team, helping select people for the new administration. Sean Spicer pointed out that the media was wrongly focused “on an incident from 10 years ago”. I’m sorry, but EVER working for the Russians as a foreign agent should prevent you from EVER working for our government. Michael Flynn? Nancy Yates the acting Attorney General also notified the administration of Flynn’s connections prior to his eventual release. For weeks, the administration stood behind Flynn, while knowing about his actions as a foreign agent. They only released him when it became public. Mike Pence had also been informed of this issue weeks before when Flynn’s lawyer sent a dated letter to the Vice President informing him of Flynn’s activities. But on camera, Pence lied twice saying he’d “just found out about it”.
There is more than enough to cause a vote of no confidence in this government. This would already have been done in any country that has that mechanism. Sadly, we don’t. The framers of the constitution couldn’t imagine things being this far off the rails.