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The Madness (and Danger) of the Texas GOP
Plus: Eric Greitens is talking about murder.
Last week he asked for “EQUAL TIME.” This week he’s having second thoughts about the political genius of Kevin McCarthy. While his minions continue to insist that there’s nothing to see here, Donald Trump is obviously paying attention — lots of attention — to what the House January 6th Committee is doing. And he’s unhappy.
In an interview with far-right host Wayne Allen Root, Trump ripped McCarthy for not putting his defenders on the panel.
“Unfortunately, a bad decision was made.”
“This committee, it was a bad decision not to have representation on that committee,” Trump said. “That was a very, very foolish decision because they try to pretend like they’re legit, and only when you get into the inner workings you say ‘what kind of a thing is this?’ Just a one-sided witch hunt.”
Committee member Adam Kinzinger tweeted:
Today’s hearings will feature Georgia Secretary of state Brad Raffensperger, his deputy Gabe Sterling; and Arizona House Speaker Rusty Bowers. Via Politico’s Playbook:
Bowers is expected to describe the pressure campaign from Trump, Rudy Giuliani and Virginia Thomas, the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarece Thomas. In one phone call, Trump and Giuliani pushed Bowers to change Arizona law retroactively “to allow the Legislature to choose a different slate of presidential electors than picked by voters.”
Meanwhile, in Texas…
You’ve probably read/heard something about the Texas GOP convention last weekend, but trust me, it was worse than you thought.
None of what follows is a parody.
On Sunday, Cathy Young wrote about the platform resolution that declared homosexuality “an abnormal lifestyle choice”:
What the actual hell? This has a real “the 1980s called and they want their social-issues rhetoric back” feel to it. Did someone from the Texas GOP leadership steal Marty McFly’s DeLorean? Or overdose on Stranger Things? Did the Cold War-to-proxy war escalation of tensions with Moscow cause a time warp?
Also, this tidbit from the convention shows how “political correctness” has now become “anything to the left of the Westboro Baptist Church”):
But there was more.
The Texas GOP also rebuked its own senior U.S. senator, John Cornyn, for working on gun-safety legislation, explicitly rejected the outcome of the presidential election, and declared that Joe Biden was an illegitimate president.
. . . and more.
The Texas GOP also called for the repeal of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
“We urge that the Voting Rights Act of 1965, codified 1402 and updated in 1973, be repealed and not reauthorized.” The Voting Rights Act of 1965 is a landmark civil rights-era bill that banned racial discrimination in elections by prohibiting any voting rules that “results in the denial or abridgement of the right of any citizen to vote on account of race or color.”
And there was this tidbit amidst the offal:
All of the above was, however, only a warm-up act for what history may remember as the main event.
Under a section titled "State Sovereignty," the platform states: "Pursuant to Article 1, Section 1, of the Texas Constitution, the federal government has impaired our right of local self-government. Therefore, federally mandated legislation that infringes upon the 10th Amendment rights of Texas should be ignored, opposed, refused, and nullified.
Too vague? unclear?
"Texas retains the right to secede from the United States, and the Texas Legislature should be called upon to pass a referendum consistent thereto."
You may be tempted to roll your eyes at the crazy here, but some quick thoughts:
This is the platform of the governing party of the nation’s second largest state. (Go ahead. Get yourself another cup of coffee. Go for a walk. Pet your dog.)
If you’ve been paying attention, you know the velocity with which crazy ideas have become mainstream in the modern GOP.
The Texas GOP is run by batshit lunatics, but it is not a total outlier. (You might want to check out the Arizona and Nevada GOP.)
Secession is going to be a thing, especially if the GOP loses the next presidential election.
This is where we really will have “free” and “unfree” Americas, side by side. To drive from Massachusetts to Alabama—especially for women and people of color—will not be crossing the Mason-Dixon line so much as it will be like falling through the Time Tunnel and emerging in a pre-1964 America where civil rights and equal treatment before the government are a matter of the state’s forbearance. If an American citizen’s constitutional rights are violated, there will be no Justice Department that will intervene, no Supreme Court that will overrule. (And arresting seditionists? Good luck with that. I expect that if Trump is reelected, he will pardon everyone involved with January 6.) The highest authority in these areas will be the governor with maybe the occasional peep out of a state court here and there.
He’s talking about murder
Can we dispense with the euphemisms? The GOP’s leading candidate for U.S. Senate in Missouri is pushing his bid for a Trump endorsement by calling for the killing of squishy Republicans.
“I’m Eric Greitens, Navy Seal, and today we’re going RINO hunting,” the 48-year-old says in the 38-second ad.
“The RINO feeds on corruption and is marked by the stripes of cowardice,” Greitens says in the video before the group forces entry into an empty home.
“Join the MAGA crew, get a RINO hunting permit. There’s no bagging limit, no tagging limit and it doesn’t expire until we save our country.”
Forced to resign from the governorship after a lurid sex scandal, Greitens is nevertheless the leading Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate. And there has been speculation that an endorsement from Trump himself might be forthcoming.
Greitens also now faces allegations from his ex-wife that he “was physically abusive and demonstrated such ‘unstable and coercive behavior’ that steps were taken to limit his access to firearms.”
But he continues to lead in the polls, and clearly thinks overt threats of political murder are just the ticket to seal the deal with the GOP primary electorate. But what are we actually looking at here?
Allahpundit does not mince words, describing Greitens’s RINO hunting ad as “fascist.” Some Republican voters will brush the ad off as trolling for the lulz . . . or a sign that Greitens will fight.
The libs say that sexual blackmail is bad, so maybe sexual blackmail is actually … good? Or at least not entirely bad. A man willing to blackmail his mistress may show the same sort of ruthlessness towards the left if elected to the Senate.
The same goes for the domestic abuse allegations. That’s not a good thing, surely — but Republicans could benefit from having some men of strong will in the Senate, no?
Essentially, Greitens is weaponizing his own immorality.
And it may work. Writes Allahpundit: “That’s the sort of depravity to which nihilistic “own the libs” thinking leads some voters, and there may be enough of them in Missouri to win a Senate primary.”
Greitens’s fascist ad is a signal to them, I think, that essentially says, “I may be a scumbag, but I’ll use my scumminess to punish your enemies.”
Which is also the Trump bargain with Republican voters in a nutshell, no? In fact, Greitens may yet earn Trump’s endorsement in the Missouri race. Stay tuned.
A reminder that toxic ideas can have fatal consequences:
Exit take: This is the death threat that Adam Kinzinger’s wife received last week for the congressman’s participation in Jan. 6th Committee
1. In Defense of Pregnancy
In their eagerness to uphold the abortion right, they’ve slipped into defaming pregnancy itself. Young women reading these stories may get the impression that pregnancy is a hellscape of pain, disfigurement, and degradation for women. Kate Manning confides that she has experienced urine leakage since giving birth, and urges that “we who oppose the annihilation of our bodily autonomy ought to plaster statehouses with photos of our episiotomy incisions, our Caesarean scars, our intravenous-line hematomas, our bloody postnatal sanitary pads and bloodstained bedsheets, our cracked nipples and infected breasts.”
Oh my. Apparently someone needs to speak up for pregnancy.
2. Biden’s Trip to Riyadh Is an Admission That His Saudi Policy Has Failed
Shay Khatiri writes that Biden’s instincts to promote democracy and human rights were good, but he moved too quickly and too clumsily.
The unfortunate truth is that the administration’s instincts were at least partially reliable, and it could have done much good if it didn’t come in too hot, expecting perfection and peace overnight in a region where, more than anywhere else, progress must be graded on a curve. The trouble began when Biden began to treat Saudi Arabia, not Iran, as the pariah he had declared it to be, and threw in the United Arab Emirates for good measure. Now that Biden needs something from the Persian Gulf Arabs—the same thing every American president has needed for nearly a century, only more—he must forgo even modest improvements in Saudi behavior and embarrass himself.
3. Ripple Effects of the Fed’s Anti-Inflation Actions
Rising net interest expenses for the government will have a noticeable effect on the government’s borrowing requirements. CBO built an interactive workbook that allows for user-specified alterations to certain economic assumptions, including interest rates. If the interest rate for 10-year notes is a half percentage point higher in 2022 than assumed by CBO, and 1.0 percentage point higher each year over the period 2023 to 2032, the federal government will borrow an additional $2.7 trillion over the coming decade compared to the agency’s current forecast. By 2032, federal debt will reach nearly $43 trillion, or the equivalent of 117 percent of annual GDP.
“The most insane field since…”