When will we hit the tipping point in the Trump Administration.
We are 110 days into the Administration and yesterday, it seemed was an appropriate time to fire FBI Director James Comey. While the “reason” for the firing was, inexplicably the handling of Hillary Clinton’s email investigation during the election, the letter itself betrayed the likely reason.
In a move that harkens back to the Saturday Night Massacre during the Nixon Administration, the move is seen as a bald faced attempt to shut down, slow down, or stymie the Investigation into collusion with the Russian Government to win the election.
It seems almost predictable that the GOP response has been muted, dismissive, and outright defensive. John McCain did his standard approach: chastise the President while doing nothing. Mitch McConnell has pushed back against the possibility of a special prosecutor. Other GOP Senators have been on the spectrum of “worried” to “Difficult decision” to “unusual timing of events.”
Since this series started, I have focused on this story and wondering “When is the tipping point?” We now have a leader who has fired the person investigating him. We have his party pretty much walking lock step with him, despite the ridicule from the public. The moves are so transparent, so blatant, so easy to see, yet the party in power remains placated because as long as Trump is in power, he is their lightning road. They can dump all of their toxicity onto him with the hopes that once they get rid of them, they will be seen as competent.
Right now, Trump support has drifted down to 36%, and this is before the news on Comey. Worse even, the Democrats hold a 16 point lead on Generic House Ballots. That along would put the Democrats up dozens of seats and retake the majority in the 2018 elections. This may explain why Freedom Caucus member Justin Amash to say he is looking into legislation to introduce a special investigator. As the fallout from this move becomes more known, it could mean more defections from the GOP. It also could mean that we will see a response to Administration abuses of power.
But who are we kidding.
When Nixon fired the person investigating him, it was a watershed moment in the Watergate scandal, the Republicans deserted him, and it set up the final act of his Presidency. Only the most die-hard of supporters continued to back Nixon, and once it became apparent what he was doing, Country won out over Party loyalty.
I cannot say the same here.
The National GOP made a Faustian Bargain to attain power, and they will sacrifice everything; their religion, their ideology, their morals, their principals in order to retain that power. From Mike Pence to Mitch McConnell to Paul Ryan to rank and file GOPers in Congress, they turn a blind eye because they have what they wanted, and they will stick to it even as the ship is sinking. McConnell’s response is proof of that, Graham’s weedly explanation furthers that. These men will line up behind Mr. Trump for anything, because they have no choice if they want to stay in their positions.
Former President Obama said just yesterday to a crowd in Italy, “You get the politicians you deserve.” and it feels that the GOP, by sowing discord, dysfunction, and craven power-grabbing for the last decade that they finally have the politicians they deserve; ones that will lie to your face and make your lives worse off, politicians who will ignore the rule of law because they are above the law. They screamed so much of Democrats corruption, and double dealing, and “emails” they have decided to elect people who are categorically worse in every category, and consider it a win.
Now, Comey is such a weird situation, he has been critisised by both parties for his actions, and at a level, his ousting should have happened the moment the new Administration began. Had it happen then, this wouldn’t be an issue… (well, less of an issue), but now… with Grand Juries now out in the open, and Comey speaking to Congress regularly, its wholly unacceptable. It was incompetence that allowed Comey to stay, and it is corruption that led to Comey being fired. The Trump Administration has fucked up twice on this.
I personally do not hold out much hope that anything significant will be done before the Midterm elections. While I suspect that there will be major fallout over this, I suspect that the GOP-run Government will barrel through until Mr. Trump does something else insane, which will move the heat elsewhere. At this point, I think Trump could murder someone on 5th Avenue and we would have to wait until a Democratic controlled chamber of Congress to do anything about it.
And that is the state of politics in America.