AuthorLueders, Bill
PositionCOMMENT - Donald Trump

History will record that the most devastating rebuke to former President Donald Trump during his second impeachment trial was delivered by a leading Republican Senator who had just voted to acquit him.

"There's no question, none, that President Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking" the January 6 seige on the U.S. Capitol, declared now Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. "The people who stormed this building believed they were acting on the wishes and instructions of their President and having that belief was a foreseeable consequence of the growing crescendo of false statements, conspiracy theories, and reckless hyperbole, which the defeated President kept shouting into the largest megaphone on planet Earth."

McConnell, of Kentucky, seemed to see as clearly as anyone the rank culpability of the nation's unfittest President, a man so lacking in principle he was prepared to sacrifice the life of his abjectly subservient veep, Mike Pence, and other members of Congress to his insane determination to overturn the results of a free and fair election.

"Pence was in serious danger," McConnell noted. "Even as the mob carrying Trump banners was beating cops and breaching perimeters, their President sent a further tweet, attacking his own Vice President." He called Trump's behavior "a disgraceful dereliction of duty."

Despite this clarity, McConnell and forty-two other Republican Senators refused to hold Trump accountable, creating the same inevitability of future transgressions as did his first impeachment. McConnells thin reed of an excuse was that Trump was no longer President--after McConnell blocked him from being tried while he was still in office.

Within a month, the dexterous McConnell had changed his tune entirely, saying he "absolutely" would support Trump should he be the party's 2024 nominee. Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, also did a 180 from his post-insurrection expression of disgust with Trump ("Count me out," he thundered. "Enoughs enough") to his familiar groveling: "I've never felt better about President Trump's leading the party than I do right now."

Such profiles in cowardice are ubiquitous among the GOP, now firmly established as the party of corruption, delusion, sedition, and prideful ignorance--including the wholesale rejection of public health measures that have sought to stem the tide of COVID-19.

The party's disdain for science and disregard for public safety have already cost...

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