What will it take for Republicans in Congress to denounce President Trump’s lies, abuses of power and downright corruption? Or, is it just too late in the election cycle for such brave pronouncements?
Recently we have seen a number of former military brass and Republican cabinet members speak truth to power. But only Sens. Murkowski and Romney in the Republican controlled Senate have broken ranks with Trump. While many other Republican members of Congress quietly agree with the generals and their two Senate colleagues, their fear of Trump’s retribution appears to be stronger than their love of country. It seems they would rather remain silent and see our democracy shattered, than reject Trump’s authoritarian rule and be primaried by a Trump sycophant in their next election bid.
More and more Republican heavyweights like former Pres. George W. Bush and Rep. Francis Rooney (R-Fla.), who served as Bush’s ambassador to the Vatican, are renouncing Trump. Yet, almost all congressional Republicans appear to be too scared of the bully in the White House to abandon the president, protect the Constitution and maintain their honor. At this point, it seems the only thing the Republican Party stands for is Trump, and, of course, lowering taxes for its wealthy donors.
With the election less than five months away, the Party appears to have given up on its options. At this point, it is stuck with Trump. Those who can no longer stomach the president are jumping ship. If the Trump destroyer sinks in November, will the Party go down with its captain?
According to Jessica Taylor, Senate editor of the nonpartisan Cook Political Report, the answer is “yes”: “Ultimately Senate Republicans’ fate will be tied to Trump…” And, Trump’s approval ratings are sinking fast. He’s down 10 points in just the last month to 39% in the latest Gallup poll. In fact, Trump has become an albatross around the necks of a great many Republican candidates. While anything can happen between now and the election, the odds of the Democrats gaining control of the Senate are clearly improving.
Another indicator that the Democrats’ chances are increasing is fundraising. The New York Times recently reported that the “Democrats raised substantially more money than Republicans did in the first quarter (of 2020) in the most pivotal congressional races.”
That’s not to say the Democrats will have an easy time of it this fall. As I’ve noted before, the Republicans ability to interfere with the voting process will play a major factor in the election. Trump and the Republicans will do whatever they can to win. Voter suppression, closing numerous polling places, voter purges and challenging voters at the polls are just some of the tactics they’ll use to hamper Democratic turnout.
While the tide is turning in the Democrats favor, we can’t take anything for granted. We all need to pitch in to ensure a huge voter turnout as well as a fair election.
To learn how to help get out the vote, go to https://www.nonprofitvote.org/nonprofits-voting-elections-online/helping-people-vote/.
Together we can, and we will, revive democracy in America.
Bruce Berlin, J.D.
A retired, public sector ethics attorney, Berlin is the author of Breaking Big Money’s Grip on America (See breakingbigmoneysgrip.com.), the founder of New Mexicans for Money Out of Politics, a former U.S. Institute of Peace fellow, and the founder and former executive director of The Trinity Forum for International Security and Conflict Resolution. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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