Nikki Haley Still Having Inappropriate Relations With That Socialism Chicken
Donald Trump refused to concede the presidential election after Joe Biden pantsed him at the ballot box. He's assembled an “elite squad" of opportunistic hacks and conspiracy-theory-peddling loons in an effort to overturn the race he clearly and unambiguously lost. His coup-coup scheme will fail but he's actively undermined America's democracy and its institutions.
Meanwhile, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, supposedly a serious person, is real worried about socialism.
Haley has seemingly lived through an alternate reality 2020. There's probably no COVID-19 there, either, but the socialist overlords still make everyone wear masks and social distance.
For the billionth and one time, Joe Biden is the president-elect of the United States. During the Democratic primary, Uncle Joe handily defeated an actual socialist (Bernie Sanders, who isn't that scary and doesn't try to pull coups) and several candidates far more liberal than he is, including Elizabeth Warren, who I briefly imagined might win this thing.
I know Joe Biden isn't a socialist because, well, he says so and if that's not convincing enough, he was elected to the Senate in 1972, the year Nikki Haley was born. She might've remembered growing up in the shadow of Delaware Castro.
Trump only won elected office four years ago and we've witnessed his radical, antidemocratic, lawless actions, which the GOP enabled. Biden is obviously a stable, normal politician. He's not going to upend our capitalist economic system, even if we might appreciate a little tweaking.
Republicans have argued that Biden will serve as a puppet to the “far Left" and do whatever Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez tells him. Yet, the worst they can say about his proposed Cabinet so far is that Neera Tanden tweeted mean words about Republicans. (Meanwhile, Trump was raising lynch mobs against Republican officials who wouldn't help him steal the election.)
John McCain and Mitt Romney went to great lengths to appease the far Right when running for president in 2008 and 2012, respectively. They openly shifted from their former moderate positions. Romney talked about immigrants “self-deporting" and called himself “severely conservative" while pretending that he never once cared about expanding health care access. McCain, who once called Jerry Falwell an “agent of intolerance," cozied up to religious conservatives in 2008 and even spoke at Falwell's Liberty University. Then, dear God, there's Sarah Palin.
Haley should consider the mounting evidence that her party is the one that's embraced extremism: Prominent Republicans such as former Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake and former RNC Chair Michael Steele voted for Biden. Romney refused to endorse Trump, and McCain's widow, Cindy, actively endorsed and campaigned for Biden, which helped flip the state (along with epic turnout and organizing by the Native American and Latinx communities, of course).
Republicans were desperate for Sanders or even Warren to win the nomination so they could point and cry, “SOCIALISM!" even while Trump wiped his gross bottom every morning with the Constitution. That didn't happen but they're sticking with the same script. It's embarrassing.
The Squad and the GOP's growing QAnon faction aren't two sides of the same coin. Lauren Boebert and Marjorie Taylor Greene aren't even real currency.
After condemning candidate Trump in 2016, Haley swiftly sold her soul to President Trump, and her richly deserved reward is that Donald Trump Jr. and maybe even Greene herself will wipe the floor with Haley in South Carolina's 2024 GOP presidential primary.
But here's the thing: If Haley ran against Trump spawn or QAnon wackjobs and managed to win the nomination, Democrats — including myself — would breathe a sigh of relief. We wouldn't insist that QAnon had gone mainstream. That's because we have integrity and Haley has none.
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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. Tickets are on sale now for his latest Nordo collaboration, "Curiouser and Curiouser," an adaptation of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass." It promises to feel like an actual evening with SER (for good or for ill).