Last night, the Wall Street Journal published an OpEd by Florida Senator Rick Scott, a crooked multimillionaire, former governor and head of the NRSC, Why I'm Defying Beltway Cowardice. His Trump-inspired battle to the death with Mitch McConnell comes down to this: "Republicans don’t deserve to govern unless we’re willing to take on the real problems America faces." Remember that widely-panned, ghastly agenda-- featuring tax increases on the poor to offset tax reductions for multimillionaires and billionaires-- Scott released towards the end of February?
Viewed by many in the GOP establishment as a colossal error, he was back to defend it and push it last night, and , in the process, push his own grab for power. Putting himself into the role of victim-- a favorite posture for any Republican politician-- he wrote "I have committed heresy in Washington. I’ve been in the Senate for only three years, and I have released an 11-point plan with 128 ideas on what Republicans should do after we win the coming elections and take control of the Senate and House. In the real world beyond the Beltway, Republicans and independents demand bold action and a plan to save our nation. They see no point in taking control of Congress if we are simply going to return to business as usual."
His plan may do just that-- if you were one of the 74,216,154 morons who voted for Trump. But 84 million voters chose to vote for... not-Trump. And Scott's ideas are repulsive as Trump. "We are losing this country," he wrote, and then went entirely off the rails into GOP woo-woo-land. "The militant left has seized control of the federal government, the news media, big tech, academia, Hollywood, the Democratic Party, most corporate boardrooms and even some of our top military leaders. The elites atop our nation’s institutions are working hard to redefine America and silence their opponents. They want to end the American experiment and replace it with a woke socialist utopia, and we are sitting around watching it happen." Last month, Asked one of Scott's congressional colleagues if this was cynicism and he tole me that it wasn't at all and that Scott believed every word of it and that he isn't pretending to be a delusional imbecile... he actually is one.
But it wasn't Cori Bush and AOC he was after; it was Mitch McConnell (and anyone else unwilling to cede the GOP to Trump). "If we have no bigger plan than to be a speed bump on the road to socialism, we don’t deserve to govern. Most Republicans in Congress agree, but many live in fear of speaking the truth in Washington. If you do, the Democrats will attack you and use it against you. Therefore, they tell us, it’s best to keep your head down, vote as directed, and be quiet. But Americans have never had more information than they do today. They demand and deserve the truth, and it’s time to give it to them." He appealed to the backbenchers:
I’ve been told there are unwritten rules in Washington about what you can and cannot say. You can’t tell the public that Social Security and Medicare are going bankrupt. You can’t talk about term limits, because, while voters want them, nobody in Washington does. You can’t talk about balancing the budget or shrinking the debt.
It turns out you also can’t point out that the federal government has figured out how to disconnect many Americans from fiscal reality. Politicians peddle a fiction that they can waste as much money as they want with no downside. They even have a fancy name for it-- “modern monetary theory”-- and President Biden’s crowd pushes it like crazy. Their plan is to give away money borrowed from your grandkids, get re-elected, and never pay a penalty for their irresponsibility.
So, I went out and made a statement that got me in trouble. I said that all Americans need to have some skin in the game. Even if it is just a few bucks, everyone needs to know what it is like to pay some taxes. It hit a nerve. Part of the deception is achieved by disconnecting so many Americans from taxation. It’s a genius political move. And it is bankrupting us.
I’m a tax cutter-- always have been, always will be. I cut taxes more than 100 times as governor of Florida. But now Chuck Schumer and the Democrats are faking outrage about my plan. Yet Americans want everyone to pay their fair share. Working Americans already pay taxes on their income, and retirees have paid plenty. The change we need is to require those who are able-bodied but won’t work to pay a small amount so we’re all in this together. That means both free-loaders who abuse the welfare system and billionaires who pay lawyers and lobbyists to help them get around the tax laws. This may be a scary statement in Washington, but in the real world it’s common sense.
It’s hard to say which Biden policy has been the most corrosive for America, but paying people not to work is near the top. Disconnecting paychecks from work is cultural cancer. There is honor and dignity in work. I learned this growing up in public housing in a very poor family. My mom often worked multiple jobs, and she taught us that the only way up was to work your way up. But left-wing policies have sent jobs overseas and replaced them with checks from a federal government that has amassed the largest debt in human history.
The working class, the middle class, are the heroes of America, and they have been carrying the burden alone, while others-- including both woke “victims” and some billionaires-- pay nothing.
There will be many more attacks on me and this plan from careerists in Washington, who personally profit while ruining this country. Bring it on. The American people are fed up, and they will show that at the ballot box this November.
No doubt... but with whom are the more fed up with? In both 2016 and 2020 Missouri was a no-brainer for the GOP. Once a swing state, only the same 4 of Missouri's 114 counties voted Democratic in both cycles. Hillary won just 37.87% of the votes and Biden 41.41%. And yet, Republican extremism and hubris have Missouri voters on the verge of electing Lucas Kunce, a game-changing populist Democrat, to the Senate. What happened? Tow things: Kunce broke the mold of the Republican-lite, spineless Democrat and the Republicans are about to nominate disgraced former governor, Eric Greitens. This morning, Alex Isenstadt reported that Trump met with Greitens last week and is leaning towards endorsing him, tantamount to handing him the Republican nomination-- albeit a kiss of death for the general election. Unlike most Senate candidates, Greitens has flatly declared he will vote against McConnell if he's elected: "No More RINOs. I'm not voting for Mitch McConnell." Isenstadt wrote that this shows how Greitens, known throughout Missouri as a violent and perverted sex predator who was forced to resign by the Republican legislature, has "become a favorite of the pro-Trump media universe" and now with Señor Trumpanzee himself. "Trump," he wrote, "who in the past has privately criticized the former governor over the scandal that led to his downfall, is telling people he’s open to endorsing Greitens-- despite fears among other powerful Republicans that the Missouri Republican is the only GOP candidate who could potentially lose the seat in November."
Trump’s newfound warmth toward Greitens has worried some of the former president’s advisers and allies, who worry that an endorsement could backfire on Trump and the Republican Party. Greitens, they argue, is a compromised candidate who could lose to a Democrat in the general election-- and in turn, embarrass Trump.
“Eric Greitens, if he gets nominated, it’s the only way we can lose the general election for Senate in Missouri,” said Mark McCloskey, another Trump-aligned candidate in the race who gained notoriety in 2020 after brandishing an assault weapon while confronting Black Lives Matter protesters. “If President Trump endorses him, it can only be the result of a lack of sufficient information or bad advice from his associates,” added McCloskey, who spoke at Trump’s 2020 convention.
Trump’s interest in Greitens has intensified in recent days. During a meeting with Trump last week, Club for Growth President David McIntosh talked up Greitens and urged the former president to support him. While Club for Growth hasn’t endorsed Greitens, the organization’s top donor, billionaire shipping and industrial supply company executive Richard Uihlein, is bankrolling a pro-Greitens super PAC.
Those close to Trump say his attraction to Greitens largely centers on the former governor’s scorched-earth attacks on McConnell. While Greitens has made his opposition to McConnell a centerpiece of his campaign, other Missouri candidates haven’t taken that step.
...Trump advisers say there is also a more personal dimension to his interest. Some in Trump’s orbit have made the case to the former president that there are parallels between the New York attorney general’s investigation into his company’s finances and the St. Louis prosecutor’s inquiry into allegations that Greitens took a nude picture of his hairdresser without her consent and threatened to release it if she divulged their affair. Greitens, who left office after top Missouri Republicans called on him to step down, has attempted to portray himself as the victim of a liberal prosecutor bent on destroying him.
And there is another reason why Trump has gravitated to the former governor: He’s persistently led in surveys, something that appeals to the polling-obsessed former president.
...“President Trump would make a serious political miscalculation to endorse a candidate with Eric Greitens’ incomparable baggage who 75 percent of primary voters know and are saying they don’t want to vote for,” [GOP strategist Gregg] Keller said.
Regardless of whether Trump endorses Greitens, senior Republicans say they are determined to prevent him from winning the nomination for fear he could lose the seat to a Democrat. Within the highest levels of the party, there are discussions about launching a well-funded effort devoted to stopping Greitens. One potential vehicle that’s been mentioned is a newly launched pro-Hartzler super PAC overseen by Chris Cox, a former top National Rifle Association official. Others argue that any anti-Greitens effort should be based in Missouri rather than Washington, to prevent Greitens from casting it as McConnell-orchestrated.
Any sustained effort to ensure a non-Greitens candidate wins the primary would need the support of major GOP donors. The party’s most prominent contributor, Las Vegas billionaire Miriam Adelson, appears to be among those looking at contenders other than the former governor. During last fall’s gathering of the Republican Jewish Coalition, Adelson’s top political gatekeeper, Andy Abboud, quietly met with Schmitt. Adelson, however, has yet to donate to any candidate in the race.
In an interview, [Rep. Billy] Long called Greitens “Chuck Schumer’s candidate,” suggesting that Senate Democrats want him on the ballot in the fall. “So every Republican in town is trying to figure out how to keep Greitens from winning,” Long added.
But Long was skeptical that any effort to highlight the former governor’s past scandal would do any good, given that its already been extensively chronicled.
“I’m like, ‘What are you going to attack him on?’ Everything he’s ever done is out there and been out there,” Long said. “So I’m not sure their theory is good, I’m not sure they can take him down. What are you going to tell people about him that they don’t already know? Come on.”
Come on? How about welcome to the party of the QAnon brain? For millions of people, the new face of the GOP is some kind of hideous amalgam of Marjorie Traitor Greene, Lauren Boebert, Madison Cawthorn, Matt Gaetz and Arizona's demented neo-Nazi dentist Paul Gosar.
Yesterday, Jonathan Weisman that the often childish, always publicity-grabbing antics of Traitor Greene and Boebert and their "association with white nationalists have elevated their profile far beyond their positions, and Democratic operatives are determined to make them the face of the Republican Party in the looming election season." Traitor Greene and Boebert, each representing a socially backward, blood red, bulletproof gerrymandered district, have the same goal.
"The two," continued Weisman, "are not the only Republicans bringing unwanted attention to the party, and some of the division in the party’s ranks is being amplified by internal disputes, not by Democrats. Senator Rick Scott of Florida, the chairman of the Senate Republicans’ campaign arm, earned a public rebuke this week from Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican leader, for putting out a campaign manifesto that called for raising taxes on the poor and cutting Social Security. On Wednesday, a little-known Republican, Representative Van Taylor of Texas, abruptly dropped his re-election bid after operatives on the party’s right flank-- angered by his vote to create a bipartisan commission to examine the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol-- revealed pornographic text messages that he had sent to a paramour. But it is the faces of Boebert of Colorado and Greene of Georgia that are splashing across social media, political videos and advertising, after they both stood and heckled President Biden during his State of the Union address on Tuesday. Boebert shouted at the president just as he was referring to the death of his son Beau Biden."
Weisman noted that Republicans "rarely condemn their own for statements they consider out of the mainstream... instead providing Ms. Greene, Ms. Boebert and others on the far right with platforms to broadcast their messages." In fact, the spineless, feckless Kevin McCarthy has made a point of publicly declaring that Traitor Greene will be given back the her committee assignments if Republicans control the House next year, another excellent reason to not vote for any Republican congressional candidates this year. And a good reason to click on this-- after all isn't a Nazi a RINO?