When you elect clowns, you get a circus | Columns | Tampa

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Photo by Dave Decker

Trump supporters outside Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida on November 15, 2022.

Donald Trump’s Third Presidential Campaign spear like a fart in an elevator, not because Republican elites woke up from their seven-year stupor to dismiss his racist grievances, conspiracy theories and authoritarian appeals. They turned against him because he wore a stench of defeat so thick that even Trump couldn’t pretend it didn’t exist.

Very slightly, Trump’s grip on the party had loosened. Maybe not definitely. Republicans denounced the Justice Department appointment of a special counsel to investigate Trump, and the martyrdom of an actual indictment could do wonders to elevate his status in MAGAland. But pissed off Trump, gas lighting response – falsely claiming that other former presidents had run off with files, then saying he “will not participatein the survey, as if it were optional – failed to rally the masses to its banner, not like before.

Regardless of who leads it in 2024, however, the GOP is still the party Trump shaped in his image — raised on its own supply, locked in a Fox News feedback loop. Consider that immediately after an election in which voters chastised GOP social extremism, three-quarters of Senate Republicans voted against same-sex marriage.

Specifically, however, consider what House Republicans did as soon as they secured their narrow majority: they promised to investigate Hunter Biden (and his laptopand social media companies that failed to post about his laptop before the 2020 election). To investigate the FBI for investigating Donald Trump. To investigate the DOJ for indicting participants in the January 6 uprising. To investigate Anthony Fauci for trying to deal with the pandemic. To investigate the FBI Director for using a taxpayer-funded plane to go on vacation, which Rep. Elise Stefanik believes is “illegal and unethical”; in fact, since 2011, executive policy has obligatory FBI directors must use government aircraft for all flights, including personal travel. Cut aid to Ukraine. To dump IRS funding. Play Russian roulette with the debt ceiling. Remove the Secretary of Homeland Security.

Regardless of who leads it in 2024, however, the GOP is still the party Trump shaped in his image — raised on its own supply, locked in a Fox News feedback loop.

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They haven’t said it yet, but I’d bet a sizable sum that they’ll pass a national abortion ban and also find an excuse to impeach Joe Biden before the next election. The political minds of the party will warn them that these are terrible ideas that have no chance of succeeding. But when you elect clowns, you get a circus, and poor Kevin McCarthy won’t be able to keep them in line. He will be the weakest Speaker of the House in modern history – assuming he becomes Speaker, which is not a foregone conclusion – his testicles in a vise belonging to the Freedom Caucus.

To be clear, it is the job of Congress to investigate malfeasance and abuse of power. But that’s not what House Republicans expected. They want two years of Benghazis– dodgy hearings that, despite their limited merits, provide fodder for Tucker Carlson while Republicans fish for something substantial enough to harm the Biden administration, Hillary’s emails. (Never mind that those same Republicans saw and heard no harm when the Trump administration threw the Constitution into a blender.)

Look no further than the press conference given last Thursday by Representatives James Comer and Jim Jordan, the new chairs of the House Oversight and Judiciary Committees, respectively.

“Committee Republicans have uncovered evidence of federal crimes committed by and for the benefit of members of the president’s family,” said Comer, a Trump sycophant who denies the election. “These include conspiracy or fraud in the United States, wire fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act, violations of the foreign bribery, violations of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, tax evasion, money laundering and conspiracy to commit money laundering. The Biden family’s business dealings involve a wide range of crimes ranging from human trafficking to potential constitutional violations. »

the 31 page report the Republicans produced did not cite any of the aforementioned crimes. Instead, he leveled charges of “insider trading” and “corruption” while vaguely referencing anonymous whistleblowers and reports of suspicious banking activity – one of which “implies that Hunter Biden has a connection to a sex trafficking operation”. (To translate: he could have paid a prostitute.) They claim that Joe Biden, while not in public office, was a partner in one of Hunter’s deals with an oil company in China – again once, not a crime, however, if true, unseemly.

Let’s see what else the Biden mafia is up to: “From Valerie Biden Owens, the president’s ‘sister, confidante, and longtime political strategist,’ writing a book about the Biden family shortly after the inauguration of Francis “Frank “Biden” promo[ing] his relationship with the Commander-in-Chief in an inauguration-day ad for the law firm he advises[,]The Biden family’s monetization of the President’s time in Washington is well documented.

Maybe don’t pull out the guillotine yet.

Clearly Hunter will be the villain of the next two years: his business ventures in Ukraine and China, his affinity for booger sugar, etc. But Congressional Republicans may have to wait in line: The same DOJ investigating Trump is also investigates Hunter. An investigation into his overseas business dealings boiled down to a scrutiny of his taxes and statements he made about his drug use when he bought a gun. A prosecutor appointed by Trump will ultimately decide whether or not to charge him.

Only 28% of Americans thinks Hunter Biden’s finances should be a top priority for the next Congress — no coincidence, the same percentage want Congress to put Biden’s impeachment first. Some of the GOPs more informed political minds want to distance themselves from the freak show. But that’s what you get when you align yourself with extremists.

On Thursday, when reporters tried to ask Comer about, well, anything else, he cut them off. “If we could keep that about Hunter Biden, that would be great.”

Man has priorities.

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