Friday, February 12, 2021

Capitol attack not a finale, but an opening act


                     "The Legislative Belly," by HonorĂ© Daumier (Metropolitan Museum of Art)

     Next week, when most Senate Republicans refuse to convict Donald Trump for inciting the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, as they surely will, there can be only one reason.
     They think the tide of chaos will break their way.
     Not in the past, not the wave of anger and insurrection that washed over Washington a little more than a month ago. That’s over done with, and receding; it sometimes feels as if the jarring events are already staring from a history book, where no doubt they will be prominently displayed as our union’s lowest point since the Civil War.
     Unless there are lower points to come.
     Because the struggle happening right now is not about the past, a month ago and fading no matter how sharply the Democratic impeachment managers set out their case.
     It is about the future.
     Are we to continue as a representative democracy?
     Or not?
     Simple question, really. Do American voters cast their ballots and select those who will run the country? Or do demagogues determine what has happened and will happen, while we all must obey? Is democracy discarded when you don’t like the result, as Trump tried to do? Is it to be dismissed as “rank democracy?” A term Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, used in October.
     Or do voters — whatever their color — still get to choose our future?
     That battle is not behind us. That battle is in front of us. State after Republican-led state will wage their own legal riot against the ability of American citizens to cast a vote. They will call these measures efforts to stem voter fraud, which the election of 2020 proved is nearly nonexistent. Their real motive — cling to power even if a majority of Americans don’t want them — will never be spoken out loud. It doesn’t have to be.
     “Stop the steal” is a great rallying cry. Who cares whether there really is a steal to stop? Not Republicans. The slogan brought the mob to Washington, and will justify suppression of Democratic voters. Just watch: more long lines, as mail-in voting is scrapped and polling places removed. Higher hurdles raised to casting a ballot. It worked in Mississippi in the 19th century. It almost worked in 2020. They’ll try again.

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  1. The Democrats must pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, which will take away from the states any ability to limit who votes in a federal election.
    And when the Re Thug Licons threaten a filibuster in the Senate, force them to actually stand up & blather on about bullshit all the time.
    It won't last more than two weeks, because now the Senate is on TV all the time, not like in 1967, when the segregationists held up the Civil Rights Act for 75 days & only those in the Senate Chamber could see that atrocity.
    In the 1950s, rotten to the core segregationist Strom Thurmond talked for just over 24 hours,
    Notice the pattern, only racists filibuster!

  2. Thank you. "this is the beginning" needs to be repeated as often as necessary so that those of us that would rather not see the American ideal given up on just for some twisted sense of preserving an exceptionalism in name only

  3. Republicans do not believe in Democracy and would disenfranchise their opponents given the chance. Gerrymandering, voter suppression and acceptance of Trump's blatant and violent attempts at election cancellation prove that this is truth, not political hyperbole. Were the SunTimes not a tabloid, todays EGD would be Page 1, above the fold.

  4. I hate to tar the whole Republican Party with the Trumpean brush, but they all seem to be inviting us to do so.


  5. On Lincoln's birthday, repurposing this great cartoon as he contemplates the decades-long replacement of his Republican party with whatever this mob of know-nothing, anti-democratic, freedumb-lovers is evolving into.

  6. Nikki Haley has become the first Republican presidential hopeful to try to appeal to (or appease) both the Trump and the anti-Trump elements in her party. From an interview today in Politico: "I think what we need to do is take the good that [Trump] built, leave the bad that he did, and get back to a place where we can be a good, valuable, effective party."

    Yeah, lotsa luck with that, lady. Luci Arnaz would be the perfect choice to play you in the movie of your life that will never get made: "Profiles in Triangulation."

  7. I've wondered for some time how any Republicans voting to acquit could possibly do so after seeing all that evidence presented. I can think of only two reasons: either they want the support of Trump's idiot followers, or they're scared to death of them, in terms of being confronted by thugs whenever they're out in public, such as walking through an airport.

    I'm leaning towards the latter reason, though of course none of them would ever admit to that. I think the ones with the more contorted justifications are the ones for whom public office is no longer what they'd wished for.

  8. Andy both the former and the latter of your options are true. Republicans with Presidential aspirations such as Rubio and Cruz are in a quandary. They’d have a better chance if Trump was impeached and couldn’t run again but if they vote to impeach they’d lose their support.
    We have no choice but to maintain the vigil we’ve attained to keep those who believe Democrats are Socialists at bay. They will never learn. They don’t want to.


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