subscribe: Posts | Comments      Facebook      Email Steve

Could ElectionGate be Trump’s undoing?



Many of us expected Trump to fail sooner rather than later. His lies and incompetence, his sheer cynicism, the banality of his thinking, his vengeance, the way he’s already selling out his supporters, stacking his administration with billionaire bankers, and—last but not least—the fact that a hell of a lot more people voted for Hillary Trump than for him: there have got to be karmic paybacks.

But who knew it would happen this soon?

ElectionGate may be the straw that breaks Trump’s back. We knew that a lot of Congressional Republicans didn’t like him. Ditto for Governors and other GOPers down to the precinct levels. His election caught them by surprise, as it did us Democrats, and many of them already had earned his resentment by not supporting him during the campaign. In my lifetime, I’ve never seen a President-elect whom so many people, including those from his own party, were waiting to fail.

For a while, Trump looked like Teflon. The insults and fabrications he threw out by the score after announcing his candidacy did him no harm. In fact, some people said they were exactly why his supporters loved him. After his election, his continued lies, like “I won in an electoral landslide” and “I won the popular vote if you subtract the millions who voted illegally,” also did little to shake the confidence of his true believers. One had to suspect, however, that Republican elected officials who weren’t entirely insane were shaking their heads at the prospect of such a mentally unbalanced individual becoming President; but they were afraid to say anything publicly.

What’s changing now is, of course, this unprecedented situation Trump’s gotten himself into with ElectionGate. He loses on every front: he looks like he’s sucking up to Putin and Russia, possibly for his own personal enrichment; he’s insulted his own national security apparatus via his attacks on the Central Intelligence Agency; and he’s enabled Republican Senators, including Lindsay Graham, Mitch McConnell and John McCain, to publicly break with him on the topic of hearings.

What could be motivating Trump? After all, this is pretty extreme stuff, even for him. We know he likes the publicity that attaches to controversy, but Trump is taking risks here that seem highly dangerous to him. Let’s give him the benefit of the doubt, starting with Putin. Trump’s made no secret of his inclination to re-jigger America’s relationship with Russia. I think a lot of Americans wonder why the U.S.-Russia relationship seems to be in tatters. Honestly, who cares about Crimea? Then too, Russia seems to be against ISIS in a major way. We say we are, too, so why can’t the two of us team up? And when it comes to Bashir Assad, isn’t he better than ISIS to lead Syria?

I wonder about these things. As a World War II history buff, I’m well aware that the U.S. allied with Russia to defeat Nazi Germany, Italy and Japan, even though politically we differed with them. Why can’t we do that now? Trump is raising an interesting question.

Still, for him to take on the CIA and the Republican establishment is a huge roll of the dice. Yesterday, McConnell announced he was onboard with a Congressional investigation into ElectionGate. House Republicans so far haven’t been as restive as their Senate colleagues, but that could change over the next few days, as the media seriously begins digging into this mess, and the public, when not preoccupied by the holidays, starts to take notice.

Incidentally, another Trump lie. This is from his twitter feed yesterday: Unless you catch ‘hackers’ in the act, it is very hard to determine who was doing the hacking. Why wasn’t this brought up before election?” This is so mendacious, I don’t even know where to begin. It’s a massive lie to say that nobody brought up the Russian connection to the emails before the election. It was all over the news throughout October; even I blogged about it on Oct, 18, and by Oct. 30, I’d learned enough from the mainstream media about Russia’s involvement to blog about it again, writing that “Putin…wants Trump to be President.”

But I’ve given up on Trump’s voters feeling indignation about his lies. They’re so lost in LaLa Land that, as he once boasted, “I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters.” You can’t fix stupid. But Congressional Republicans are different. A lot of them are stupid, but a lot aren’t. The question they face now with ElectionGate is whether to follow their consciences, or to follow Trump into the Land of Partisan Lies. Usually Republicans do the latter; they crossed the Rubicon into immorality years ago when they embraced the sick corpses of evangelicism and the alt.right. But sometimes, even a Republican can surprise you. Maybe McCain, Graham, McConnell and a few others actually remember a time when they were ethical. Maybe they miss those days, and long for a return to them. Well, ElectionGate is giving them the excuse they’ve been looking for. We’ll see if they have the cojones to take down this pathological liar.

Leave a Reply


Recent Comments

Recent Posts