Tulsi Gabbard Is An Asset All Right
Tulsi Gabbard's giving up the House seat she would've lost anyway, so she's busy auditioning for a lucrative Fox News gig. Yesterday, Gabbard went on "Rising" with The Hill's Krystal Ball and Saagar Enjeti. The supposedly Democratic candidate for president was served up an anti-impeachment, anti-Nancy Pelosi amuse-bouche and she eagerly gobbled it up.
ENJETI: Pelosi has said they may not even transmit the articles of impeachment to the Senate if they don't think that process is fair. Does that make it a blatantly political statement from the beginning? If they don't end up sending that, what message does that send about this entire process.
GABBARD: I was surprised to hear that. You can't kind of just shift and change and make up the rules as you go along. If you're going to pursue this process, you've got to let it play out the whole way through.
Sweet Christ. Pelosi isn't playing Calvinball. She's playing hard ball. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has outright stated that he plans to hold a sham trial. He was as open about his evil scheme as a loose-lipped, overly confident Bond villain. Pelosi rightly believes there's no sense sending over articles of impeachment if the GOP Senate is just gonna roll them up and smoke fat doobies. Maybe Gabbard wants a clearly rigged process to end with Trump's acquittal and subsequent gloating tour. It's not the first time her desires haven't aligned with those of most Democrats.
If this were Lauren Underwood, Sharice Davids, or any Democrat with a brain in their heads, they wouldn't have accepted Enjeti's ridiculous "when did Pelosi stop beating the Constitution?" question. They would bring up McConnell's public statements. They'd mention how Lindsey Graham refuses to hold Trump accountable for so much as a parking ticket. Democrats aren't making impeachment "political." They're trying desperately to keep Republicans from shamelessly politicizing the process. We know Gabbard was present for the impeachment hearings, but did she even listen to Adam Schiff? It seems like all she can do is "both-sides" us to death.
GABBARD: I think the hyper-partisan nature that we've seen throughout this whole thing. This is not just on part of the Democrats — you see on those who are defending Donald Trump, you see a blind loyalty to their party's leader.
Oh, thank you so much, Tulsi. It's so big of you to admit that it's not just Democrats who suck. Republicans have abandoned their constitutional duties in service of short-term political gain, but Democrats are using "extreme language." It really concerns Gabbard that Democrats are "basically accusing the president of treason without actually saying the word." Gee, I think calling the president a traitor outright is what would actually qualify as EXTREME! Democrats just laid out the damning case against Trump. It's hard to describe Trump's political diarrhea in a way that doesn't make decent people retch.
Gabbard is just terrible. She's not as embarrassing as former Democrat turned Republican Trump fluffer Jeff Van Drew, who pledged his "undying support" to the president in a spectacle of debasement at the White House yesterday. But I think she's worse. She's shouting "both sides" from inside the house. Van Drew has clearly taken a side. Gabbard pretends she hasn't, which is why Republicans such as "The View" co-host Meghan McCain praise her supposed "courage." After all, Tulsi's laid out a road map for "Never Trump" Republicans to speechify on Trump's awfulness without ever acting against him. Yes, Trump is corrupt, but Democrats really feel strongly about it. If a political party of Vulcans opposed Trump, maybe more Republicans could get on board.
Meghan McCain praises Tulsi Gabbard for voting 'present' on impeachment Fox News December 19, 2019 youtu.be
McCain, whose father I believe is John McCain, laments how "politicized" everything is. She grossly compared a Washington Post reporter tweeting "Merry Impeachmas!" to Trump's slimy personal attacks against Debbie Dingell. They are not morally the same, and even if they were, it's irrelevant to Trump's actual crimes. Gabbard choosing to vote "present" for articles of impeachment because she doesn't like Democrats is a true abdication of her constitutional duty. It's also curious behavior from a Democratic presidential nominee. She's running around cosplaying as Bartleby the Scrivener but she's really just a Republican asset.
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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.