The Mahablog

Politics. Society. Group Therapy.

The Mahablog

Republican Blame Game

On the day Trump is expected to announce he’s running for the White House again in 2024, the Guardian is reporting that Rupert Murdoch really won’t be backing Trump any more. And some guy who is a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute has an op ed in the Washington Post blaming Trump for a whole lot of losses in competitive House districts.

In short, Trump remains quite popular among Republican voters, and his endorsement was decisive in plenty of House primaries this summer. But close association with the twice-impeached president was a clear liability in competitive 2022 House races, turning what would have been a modest-but-solid Republican majority into (at best) a razor-thin one. … the evidence from this year’s House races overwhelmingly suggests that conforming the party to Trump’s vision is an electoral dead end.

I wasn’t aware Trump has a “vision” other than him being King of the World. It’s like when a Trump supporter claims they know Trump isn’t perfect but appreciate what he accomplished in the White House. I honestly can’t think of anything he “accomplished.” Can you? But even now the wingnuts are still trying to pretend his tenure as POTUS was not just a four-year-long embarrassment for the GOP. And the nation. Hell, our species.

It came out yesterday that Trump really did have the FBI audit people who annoyed him. Trump also made noises that Ron DeSantis should be grateful for his sending the FBI to be sure DeSantis was elected governor of Florida in 2018.

“After the Race, when votes were being stolen by the corrupt Election process in Broward County, and Ron was going down ten thousand votes a day, along with now-Senator Rick Scott,” Trump wrote, “I sent in the FBI and the U.S. Attorneys, and the ballot theft immediately ended, just prior to them running out of the votes necessary to win. I stopped his Election from being stolen.…”

I am inclined to think this is utter bullshit, but the DoJ probably needs to check to be sure.

A large part of the GOP seems to be working itself toward a consensus that everything that went wrong in the midterms was just the fault of a few people. Trump is one. Mitch McConnell, inexplicably, is another. I’d normally be the first person to blame Mitch for anything, but he really wasn’t running the circus this time. And nobody seems to be standing up for Kevin McCarthy these days.

[Update: Sen. Rick Scott, the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, has just announced he is challenging Mitch McConnell for the minority leader position. So the guy who was in charge of electing senators, and failed, thinks he can do a better job gumming up the works of government than Mitch? It’ll be fun if Scott wins, though.]

Paul Waldman writes that the Republican party is preparing to tear itself apart.

One of the notable features of all this conflict is how disorganized it is. Some people have a beef with McCarthy or McConnell. Some are upset with Trump. Some want to put all their election denialism behind them. And many are just angling for their own advantage. Unlike in previous moments of tumult, it’s hard to draw a clear line between the establishment and the insurgents.

That’s partly because the person who still leads the party — Trump — always presented himself as a scourge of the old guard. Trump loyalists, no matter how high their position, fancy themselves rebels, iconoclasts or brave opponents of the stodgy and self-satisfied. …

… At the moment, it’s far less clear just what Republicans are fighting about. It certainly isn’t substantive issues; the party remains remarkably unified on policy, partly because outside of tax cuts and immigration, they don’t care much about policy at all. Instead, policy debates are increasingly about how radical Republicans should be to achieve their goals.

What is clear is that they now have a leader around whom all their political problems revolve.

And then there’s Josh Hawley, who declared “The old party is dead. Time to bury it. Build something new.” By the “old party” I assume he means the old Washington establishment. Later he tweeted, “Washington Republicanism lost big Tuesday night. When your ‘agenda’ is cave to Big Pharma on insulin, cave to Schumer on gun control & Green New Deal (‘infrastructure’), and tease changes to Social Security and Medicare, you lose.”

So what about abortion rights and election denialism, Josh? Those were the issues that really cost your tribe last week.

The fact is that it’s the insurgents who seem to be even more out of the loop than the old guard. Michelle Goldberg:

A common rap on liberals is that they’re trapped in their own ideological bubble, unable to connect with normal people who don’t share their niche concerns. This cycle, that was much truer of conservatives. The ultimate example of this was the Arizona Senate candidate Blake Masters, the human incarnation of a right-wing message board, who lauded the Unabomber manifesto and put out gun fetishist campaign ads that made him look like a serial killer.

[Losing House GOP candidate Joe] Kent suffered from a similar sort of insularity. He attacked sports fans, suggesting it’s not masculine for men to “watch other men compete in a silly game,” a view common in corners of the alt-right but unintelligible to normies. [Winning House Dem candidate Marie] Gluesenkamp Perez said Kent seemed shocked when, during a debate, his line about vaccines as “experimental gene therapy” didn’t go over well, which she took as a sign that he’d spent too much time “operating in the chat rooms.”

The ultimate expression of the right-wing echo chamber was the Stop the Steal movement itself. Conservatives might have been less credulous about it if they weren’t so out of touch with the Biden-voting majority.

Goldberg’s column is worth reading all the way through.

The Trump monster in heels known as “Kari Lake” has lost her bid to be governor of Arizona. Right-wing media is in meltdown mode over this one. Some of them are talking about a recall effort against governor-elect Katie Hobbs. Lake may be the one loser to launch a “stop the steal” effort. See Philip Bump, Reality waits to see if it has a new supporter.

17 thoughts on “Republican Blame Game

  1. Go pound salt, Kari Lake. If anyone deserved to lose, it was this self-righteous denialist, deluded with her own Trump-like ability to create fiction out of nothing.

    • If you want to know more about AZ politics (crime), look at the rise and takeover of the valley by Del Webb and the Sun City crowd,_Arizona They built the real estate racket that led to Lincoln Savings  (and who were taking orders from The Outfit … who built Vegas from the quiet Scottsdale orange groves, hmm, who knew).

      The Valley of the Sun was (is) crime city, for a real yarn read

      Kari Lake was working for another "crime boss" that wanted to move in on the bonanza of crime called "deregulation" in the real estate market. Real champs: when the Valley goes into water stress, there are gonna be 5 million thirsty housecat-libertarians who will still have no idea that the TV news girl would have been disastrous because she is just a goodfella.

      • All I can say is "Wow". Had no idea of the dark undercurrent. Thanks for the links. If I ever needed a reason – besides climate change – to avoid AZ… Trump in heels, indeed.

        • Yes, trillions of dollars of sorrowful crime… they tested the Florida-style land swindles in the swamp, moved them to the desert, and then weaponized Goldwater politics to add to the mix for flat out sanctimonious power. They feel that there is a trillion more $$$ to be swindled … but I think that the hard border of climate change on the Upper Salt (Colorado Plateau) will hit the valley people (who are the beneficiaries of that crime) harder and more unexpectedly than the border folks that they panic about. The book that got me interested in water politics was:


    • The take home story for you (us) is that the weaponized Goldwater politics was rolled out nationally in 2016 (perhaps on Jan 6?).

      My favorite rumor is that Barry's brother hired the same guy that blew up Don Bolles to plant a bomb on the Res so that the governor could call martial law to install their own people (land swindlers) to the tribal council. Their false-flag scheme failed and the Arizona Project (noted above) was chasing this scheme as their Holy Grail blockbuster story, old school all the way.

      These guys play for keeps, so the old crew in the valley will be happy with no TV noob to horn in in their territory, I suspect. They know what they get with Hobbes and can play the game with her: their own dread-pirate Mr. Conservative.

  2. I am inclined to think this is utter bullshit, but the DoJ probably needs to check to be sure.

    I wish they'd ask DeSantis about it, because there's no good answer he could give. But of course, asking a Republican a question they'd rather not answer is against some media law written down somewhere.

  3. Anyone catch the Mike Pence interview last night?

    1) He appears to have aged 25 years since hooking his wagon to Trump

    2) He appeared to be trying to play the card that he was angry more than anything else but came across as being about ready to begin weeping

    3) Not a smidgen of sympathy from me

  4. Trump does have a vision, of sorts.  It's not uniquely his by any means, but he is the ideal avatar for it wherever it is found. 

    Many[, many, many] people are trying to avoid accountability, in any form or amount — for their own individual selves.  Trump represents the quest to abolish sources and structures of accountability, even if other people besides himself also benefit.  This may seem uncharacteristic, but it makes sense to him because he has an infant's view of power: inherently arbitrary and illegitimate, usable only as a weapon. 

    Before the emergence of Trump, those who were led to this logical ramification of personal unaccountability were mostly restrained by the calculation that it could be used against them and by the fact that it need must be pursued by stealth.  Trump radically does not care about either of those things.  This is his vision, if that is the right word for it; and it is shared by a vast number of others who dare not say so, alongside a handful who do.  It is mirror anarchism: expressing a faith not in human good but in human evil.

  5. I've been waiting for decades to say this:

    "The RepubliKKKLAN Party is in disarray."


    If I had any, I'd put my money on popcorn futures.

  6. I wasn’t aware Trump has a “vision” other than him being King of the World. It’s like when a Trump supporter claims they know Trump isn’t perfect but appreciate what he accomplished in the White House. I honestly can’t think of anything he “accomplished.” Can you?

    Well… he's proven that the Republican Party will kill Americans rather than cause their poll numbers to fall, by disagreeing with him.

    He's proven that every Republican in the Senate is utterly untrustworthy, having twice sworn, before God, that they would see impartial justice done, and utterly refused to do so much as apply impartial window dressing. And, you know, if a person will lie, when swearing to seek justice, how could you ever believe them about anything? If they'll corrupt themselves, regarding justice and impartiality, how could you believe them about anything, ever?

    He's proven that Republicans never cared about "the rule of law" nor the Constitution, by showing that they'll all cheer flagrant lawbreaking, like Trump using the White House as a political prop for re-election.

    I'm not saying that anyone but me cares about these things, but in a real sense, he has accomplished a lot. Justice, the lives of their fellow Americans, neither of them mattered one whit, not compared to *POLL NUMBERS*.

  7. "I am inclined to think this is utter bullshit"

    If it came out of lil-donnie's pie-hole then yes it is utter bullshit! I can't believe (actually I can) that cnn aired the entire "speech" at Trumps trash palace last night. The man openly tried to steal the 2020 election, got hundreds of people injured and a couple people killed and they (cnn) are going to treat him as just another politician announcing a run for president? From what I've read of his "speech" it was a long list of the usual grievances and read like a blueprint for the GQP house investigation schedule. Garland needs to indict this asshole soon.

  8. The tfg statements about how bad it is going to be reminded me of american carnage speech. I wonder if bannon helped him. Funny to see him act serious and i do mean act.

    Rick Scott needs to be pounded by media dems etc for his rotten unaccountability. He wants to deconstruct the government and when he does will he say oops don't blame me?

    Florida seems to be the source of rotten rotten men and women. Msy it go under the waves.

    • yeah he also said we were right on the verge of a new "Golden Age"? Hmm I seem to remember 16% unemployment and 40% of the stock market wiped out, some "Golden Age"? He lies so effortlessly!

  9. Some really great news: Katie Porter officially beat her wingnut opponent, and Karen Bass, a black state legislator is officially mayor of Los Angeles.

    Two women narrowly beat two, well-heeled male opponents. I am so glad I live in CA….

  10. Yeah, he lies effortlessly. He doesn't even care that the facts show him for the swindler he is. (And the NY civil suit will prove it – big time.) He's counting on the cult to stay true to the "vision." Trump will go back to recruiting loyalists – they will further discredit the GOP. The wheels are coming off. DeSantis is in no hurry – he just got elected Guv and there's no reason to declare he wants a new job. Not yet.

    The DOJ will indict Trump of the first charges, re Presidential Records and the Espionage Act. Trump knows it and he's planning on playing the victim card. Not many people outside the cult are gonna buy into it. After the Trump candidacy is clearly in peril in the polls, only supported by cultists, DeSantis will make his move as the Trumpian champion who could win in the General. At that time, before the primaries start, will the GOP voters abandon Trump for a candidate with the potential to win? This would be a fascinating moment, with democracy hanging in the balance if Trump let it play out. He won't. Mary Trump has said, and I agree, Trump will bring down the entire Republican party if they threaten to leave him. He has the power to destroy the GOP by starting hs own party or running as an independent candidate. If he does it, neither he, nor DeSantis has a chance in hell, but Trump will demand fealty from everyone in the GOP – or else. 

    The media will treat Trump like a credible candidate – the midterms say Trumpism and Trump are politically dead. The only chance Trump had was if the stooges running in swing states to be Sec of State and run the elections had won. They ALL lost. These were state elections and didn't get much coverage but the scheme to rig four swing states to Trump regardless of the popular vote was a serious threat. WAS! Trump can't even cheat his way into the WH. That only leaves force – a coup on election day under the excuse of a stolen election. Problem: In the next week or so, the Oath Keepers will be found guilty of Seditious Conspiracy and in a couple of months get sentences of over a decade. Bannon is going to come out of prison to face a new trial in NY and he'll go back to prison. Rudy will get charged in GA for election meddling. The illusion that Trump is some powerful avenger is going to evaporate. As Trump calls for riots, (He won't use that word.) his cultists are mostly going to discover they have other things to do that weekend. Buy, hey, why don't you go. 

    Democrats will get a clear mandate in 2024. We need to use it to expand the court, restore civil rights, end gerrymandering, and (my dream) erect a wall of separation between big money and our government. That will require that we be active in the primaries and elect progressive candidates to high office. Electing incumbents who go back to serving the Democratic donor class won't get it done. But if the GOP self-destructs, we have a shot.


Comments are closed.