This morning, the Orlando Sentinel apologized to its readers for having endorsed right-wing sociopath Michael Waltz for Congress. Disingenuously, the editors claimed ignorance. "We had no idea, had no way of knowing at the time, that Waltz was not committed to democracy... Waltz, to our horror, was one of the nine Florida Republican members of Congress who, on Thursday, signed up to support a lawsuit brought by Texas in the U.S. Supreme Court that’s attempting to throw out the election results in Georgia, Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania-- all states where Donald Trump lost to Joe Biden... Waltz and 105 fellow Republican House members say. They want to undo 231 years of election tradition and norms so their guy, Donald Trump, can have another four years in office. And so the president won’t send out a mean tweet that might torpedo their chances for reelection... The cowardly betrayal of American ideals by the gang of nine Florida congressmen was preceded on Wednesday by 17 Republican state attorneys general-- Florida’s Ashley Moody included, of course-- joining in the Texas lawsuit."
The editors continued that "Our nation teeters on the edge of constitutional disaster, thanks to the likes of Waltz and these Florida members of Congress who also signed up to support the lawsuit brought by Texas: Gus Bilirakis, Mario Diaz-Balart, Neal Dunn, Matt Gaetz, John Rutherford, Ross Spano, Daniel Webster and Ted Yoho. We didn’t endorse Webster, whose district includes Lake County, in part because he gave up his bridge-building shtick long ago to become a rank partisan. His name on this document is no surprise. But we supported Waltz over his opponent-- Democrat Clint Curtis, a fairly dismal candidate-- in the November general election, partly because Waltz had established a strong working relationship with fellow U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy, a Democrat." Oops! They forgot to mention that Murphy, head of the Blue Dogs, is a Republican in all but name and that, like Waltz, she has an "F" rating from ProgressivePunch.
Idiotically, they contended that they "were impressed this year, as we were in 2018, with Waltz’s seeming pragmatism, though less impressed with his willingness to crash a congressional hearing during Trump’s impeachment proceedings." [That should have been enough right then and there: case closed-- go away, asshole-- but not for The Sentinel editors.] "We should have taken that hyperpartisan, juvenile lapse in judgment more seriously, given it more weight. Because it really was a red flag, a sign that Waltz’s loyalty isn’t to the Constitution but to a president whose flaws are deep, profound and dangerous. [No shit, Sherlock!] So is Waltz-- dangerous. Should the Supreme Court go along with this gambit he supports and cast aside the votes of Americans in four states, the resulting civil upheaval could be disastrous. It could take generations for the nation to recover... Everyone who supported Michael Waltz for Congress should feel a deep sense of remorse and regret. We do."
I hope they choke on their remorse. They will never understand that no matter how bad the Democratic Party is-- and it is somewhere between 'really bad' and 'worthy of extinction.' the Republican Party is worse-- always and every single one of them. Yesterday, Jacobin published an essay by Benjamin Fong and Dustin Guastella, The Siren Song of 'Pro-Worker' Conservatism, making the very salient point that "anti-elitists" on the Right-- they point to Julius Krein, Michael Lind, Saagar Enjeti, Oren Cass, Chris Buskirk and, most notoriously, Tucker Carlson-- "say they want the GOP to be the party of the working class. But what they’re really offering is a PR campaign that won’t fundamentally change the lives of workers... [T]his new Right sees US economic decline and cultural malaise as largely the result of 'a short-sighted American elite [that] has allowed the country’s manufacturing core-- the key to both widespread domestic prosperity and national security in the face of a mercantilist China-- to be hollowed out.' In response, they promote a modest economic protectionism in the hopes of restoring American manufacturing to its former glory... But the new Right is not a promising new expression of working-class mobilization-- it’s an intellectual symptom of mass political demobilization. The Republican Party is hardly on the verge of revolting against its wealthy anti-tax voters."
Forget Tucker Carlson; if you want to know what the Republican Party's attitude towards the working class is, there's no better place to go than Jonathan Tasini's Working Life Newsletter. His essay last night, Mitch McConnell's License To Kill makes mincemeat of the Republican Party's decision to hold the lives of working class Americans hostage to pass a bill that protects corporate criminals from the justice system-- what Tasini calls a license to kill. "It’s in a bill," he wrote, "by John Cornyn-- he’s McConnell’s right-hand henchman-- that would block any safety and health or worker-advocate federal agency from taking any action against companies who are making people sick… and killing them, not to mention the people who workers unintentionally sicken because they are forced to show up to an unsafe workplace and, then, they go back home. You start off with the title of the bill: 'Safeguarding America’s Frontline Employees To Offer Work Opportunities Required to Kickstart the Economy Act' or the 'SAFE TO WORK Act.' Puke-worthy. George Orwell is a piker compared to these pricks."
The heart of Cornyn's and McConnell's demand: "an employer shall not be subject to any enforcement proceeding or liability under any provision of a covered Federal employment law" (like the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSHA), the Fair Labor Standards Act, The Age Discrimination in Employment Act, The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; and Americans with Disabilities Act. Suspending OSHA, for example "would simply be a signal to CEOs-- no worries, you don’t have to spend a dime to protect workers because we are defanging OSHA. Add on the rest of those laws and you can add up a whole raft of laws that, together, mean the workplace will continue to be a vector of illness and a killing field-- and CEOs will not be held to account."