Do-Nothing Republicans Continue Doing Nothing About Traitor Trump
Monday in Helsinki, Donald Trump stood next to Russian President Vladimir Putin, the official sponsor of Trump's White House reality show, and glibly debased America and its institutions in exchange for a soccer ball, which frankly is more than his soul was ever worth. Republican leaders, defenders of liberty all, strongly condemned the president's actions. House Speaker Paul Ryan went so far as to say, "There's no place for this. [He] should apologize. That's dangerous for our society, that's dangerous for our democracy."
Sorry, no, that was a statement Ryan made when Rep. Maxine Waters suggested citizens personally let members of Trump's cabinet know how much they suck. Ryan's actual statement post-Helsinki reminded me more of the "vaguebooking" your friend posts on social media when their marriage is collapsing.
There is no question that Russia interfered in our election and continues attempts to undermine democracy here and around the world. That is not just the finding of the American intelligence community but also the House Committee on Intelligence. The president must appreciate that Russia is not our ally. There is no moral equivalence between the United States and Russia, which remains hostile to our most basic values and ideals. The United States must be focused on holding Russia accountable and putting an end to its vile attacks on democracy.
"Sometimes you realize you should've listened to your family and friends. You should trust they know what's best for you. It can turn out that your heart was wrong all along."
It's not like Ryan can't form sentences that use subjects (like, say, "the president") and descriptive adjectives (like, for instance, "treasonous"). This is how he responded in 2017 when Barack Obama commuted Chelsea Manning's sentence.
Ryan's Helsinki response is typical of most elected Republicans, who want to walk the political tightrope of acknowledging that a crime has been committed (Russia's attacks on our elections) while still receiving the stolen merchandise (the promotion of the GOP agenda through Trump, oh and also stolen DCCC data used by Ryan's superpac, but we keep ignoring that one, so we might as well ignore it some more). During a press conference Tuesday, Ryan appeared visibly annoyed that he had to talk about Putin when he'd rather talk about how he planned to starve old people. Overall, Republicans are happy that Trump won the election, never mind how, but I imagine they're more than a little disappointed that Putin owns a US President. He was supposed to be their patsy.
You'll notice that Marco Rubio gently disagrees with Trump's absurd insistence that Putin didn't interfere with our elections, but he ultimately supports the man who gave him a wedgie during the 2016 primaries when he claims the interference didn't really matter. Paul Ryan also claims Russian interference had no "material effect" on an election decided by 78,000 votes across three states. That's actually dumber than pretending it didn't happen at all. Does Rubio think presidential campaigns are ultimately meaningless, because Russia actively "campaigned" for Trump. Here's another hint: Does Putin look like his evil plan didn't work? When Putin used to meet with US officials who weren't his personal property, he seemed constipated. Yesterday, during his press conference with Trump, Putin looked like he'd just had the most satisfying bowel movement in recorded history.
Rubio wants to help maintain the illusion of Trump's legitimacy so they can continue packing the courts with more right-wing judges. That's all Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell cares about. He last tweeted on Friday when he shared a positive op-ed about Brett Kavanaugh, who will still somehow wind up on the Supreme Court despite the events of the past week. The male-dominated punditry condemned Hillary Clinton for her "delayed" response on Harvey Weinstein when she no longer held or was seeking public office. Yet, it's again falling for the "banana in the tailpipe" of thinking the latest Trump horror will inspire the GOP to honorable action.
Gee, if Trump is holding a "closed press" meeting with Congress, I will have to assume Nancy Pelosi didn't get an Evite. This will likely give Republicans some cover by claiming -- as
Ryan recently did to such weaselly effect -- that they totally hold Trump's feet to the fire in private. Not that it even matters what anyone says happened during the meeting because Sarah Huckabee Sanders will just lie about it later. Still, I'm sure we'll have some great leaks from this PR stunt posing as serious counsel. The Washington Post recently did its part in sharing what were likely carefully coordinated leaks that serve no purpose other than potentially helping Trump staffers find work elsewhere
once if this whole nightmare ends.
Ahead of the meeting, staffers provided Trump with some 100 pages of briefing materials aimed at laying out a tough posture toward Putin, but the president ignored most of it, according to one person familiar with the discussions, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to disclose internal deliberations. Trump's remarks were "very much counter to the plan," the person said.
"Everyone around Trump" was urging him to take a firm stance with Putin, according to a second person familiar with the preparations. Before Monday's meeting, the second person said, advisers covered matters from Russia's annexation of Crimea to its interference in the U.S. elections, but Trump "made a game-time decision" to handle the summit his way.
See? Believe us, no one in the Trump White House wanted the president to "Charlie McCarthy" his way through that Helsinki summit! You can take that to the bank. Attached please find updated copies of our resumes for any future employment opportunities.
Hasn't the media tired of these so obviously self-serving stories? If you're a presidential adviser who has never successfully advised, then you should just quit and do something more productive like trying to convince the Papa John's guy not to be racist in public.
It seems to me that the intent of these leaks and today's "crisis" meeting is to promote the narrative that there are sensible people out there desperately attempting to control Trump, which is obviously preferable to the reality that Trump is controlling the Republican-led government and he in turn is controlled by a Russian dictator.
Thanks, Marco. That was of absolutely no help whatsoever. Why are you tweeting in the middle of the night like Lady Macbeth at her looniest? I know it sucks serving as a puppet's puppet, but get some rest.
Meanwhile, Tuesday morning, the House responded to Trump's surrender to Russia with the second useless hearing on supposed conservative bias in social media, or as the apes who run the world in the future will call them "The Diamond and Silk Hearings."
Sweet Christ. I can't even. All my evens are permanently disabled.
Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He's on the board of the Portland Playhouse theater and writes for the immersive theater Cafe Nordo in Seattle.