The New York Times just published a truly shocking article detailing conversations between Donald Trump and Mike Pence.
Essentially, Trump asked Pence to ignore the electoral college votes from a few swing states and thus declare Trump president for the next four years.
Pence did not say, “But Mr. President, that would not reflect the will of the voters, which is the American way.“
Pence did not say, “But Mr. President, that would make a mockery of the democratic republican form of government that America has been promoting around the world for over two centuries.“
Pence did not say, “But Mr. President, that would be a direct violation of the law and the Constitution, and spit in the faces of all the Americans who have fought and died to defend it all these years.”
Instead, The New York Times notes, “Vice President Mike Pence told President Trump on Tuesday that he did not believe he had the power to block congressional certification of Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s victory in the presidential election…”
It’s sort of like saying, “I’d be happy to steal that guy’s briefcase, but I can’t do it right now because he’s not in a dark alley.”
If ever there was an example of how completely the Republican Party has lost its way, this is it.
Forty years ago, with the Reagan Revolution, the Republican Party abandoned all principles and decided to purely embrace money and power.
Rightwing billionaires and wealthy corporations set up think tanks, both federally and in every single state, to promote the idea that the government should be subordinate to great wealth and economic power.
They set up organizations and systems like the American Legislative Exchange Counsel (ALEC) to bring corporate lobbyists together with mostly Republican legislators to pass the wish lists of their corporate donors into law.
Because there aren’t enough voters whose main issue is cutting taxes on billionaires and deregulating industry while poisoning Americans, they had to reach out to other groups to build a governing coalition.
So, Republicans invited into their party white racists, gun nuts, misogynistic antiabortion freaks, fundamentalist hustlers claiming to speak on behalf of Jesus, and gay bashers. It was enough to give them four decades of power.
But, increasingly, the gig is up. Americans have figured out that the Republican party stands for corporate polluters, bankster ripoff artists, and billionaires who are absolutely unwilling to pay their fair share of the cost of a functioning and healthy society.
But, nonetheless, they persist. The Times noted, “Mr. Pence also indicated to the president that he would keep studying the issue up until the final hours before the joint session…”
Right and wrong are no longer considerations for the GOP. Even legality and constitutionality are not their focus. Instead, it’s all about money and power. Not doing what’s right, but doing what’s possible.
The rot of Reaganism has finally spread throughout the entire party, which now stands like a dead tree in the forest, filled with parasites and temporary shelter seekers.