Now, as we move ever closer to the Orange Monster’s (“the OM’s) downfall, it becomes increasingly clear that the GOP Senate fully intend to go down with him. Increasingly, the seats on the Republican side of the Chamber of the United States Senate look more and more like the deck chairs on the Titanic.
Let’s just look at the OM’s latest and most audacious move to date: Using the declaration of a bogus National Emergency—when there clearly isn’t one, so that he can to do an end-run around Congress, usurping their power of the purse, simply because he could not convince the American people or their Representatives to pay for an unnecessary wall on our southern border that he promised over and over again that Mexico would pay for. This action is clearly unconstitutional. As our constitution makes quite clear, it is only Congress who controls the power of the purse. The Founders did not want to grant authoritarian powers to the Executive Branch. Rather, our Founders saw the three branches of government as separate but equal in power, and wanted each branch to act as a check and balance on the other two branches. This system has served the American people since the nation was founded. That is, until our 45thpresident took office.
Unwilling to follow the law and to obey the constitution which he took an oath to protect and to defend, the OM has refused to stay in his executive lane from the beginning. From the outset, he has done all that he can to subvert the power, sustainability and the legitimacy of both the legislative and the judicial branches of our government. For the first two years of his presidency, the GOP controlled House and Senate went along with every claim he made for more power, cowering like frightened rats before the Orange Monster, even as he swerved beyond and then through every guardrail and norm of our government and society.
Then came the midterm elections when the American public overwhelmingly returned the House of Representatives to Democratic control, so that a check and balance on the executive branch could finally be restored. And thank God! But have the members of the GOP, what remains of them in the House and Senate, learned any lesson from their defeat in November 2018? Apparently not, since Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has now acquiesced to the OM once again. Where McConnell was warning the president against declaring a made-up and fake national emergency last week, he now says that he is all for it!
That Nancy Pelosi will bring to the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives a resolution against what she rightly calls a “power grab,” is certain. Nor can there be any doubt that the House will pass the Resolution declaring 45’s emergency declaration both fake and dead on arrival. Then, Leader McConnell will be forced to bring the Resolution to a straight up or down vote in the U.S. Senate. No doubt every Democratic Senator will vote against the president’s unconstitutional move. But whatever are the wimps that masquerade as Republican Senators ever going to do, particularly after they wailed for years against the executive actions taken by President Barack Obama’s during his tenure. Even the most Republican among them would have to admit that what 45 is attempting goes far, far beyond anything President Obama ever tried. The OM’s power grab, if successful, would provide a precedent making the powers of the president more like that of a Dictator than that of a leader of a democracy. This simply must not be allowed to happen. Not if we intend to still have a democracy of any kind when the OM is removed from office.
So, the gutless wonders otherwise known as Republican Senators will have a choice: They can defend our Democracy and protect the powers of the legislative branch, or they can side with their president and give him the powers of a Dictator. This, of course, will be a hard call for most of them, since they have shown over the last two years that they always will choose party over country. No power grab has been too much for them to get behind, simply to maintain their own power. But this time will be different, as each of their senate seats will be on the line. Choosing wrong could very well cost them their power and their job.
Now, thank God, they will be asked to choose between their Tyrant or the Constitution, to keep their congressional authority preserved or to hand it over to their unhinged leader, all the while knowing that the American people will be watching their vote perhaps more closely than any vote ever taken in the history of the Senate. When they cast their vote, they will know that they can choose to please both the president’s crazy Republican base and the American public at large. They will have to choose which they want to win: A primary or a general election, because in many cases they won’t be able to win both. What will be more important to them: their own power or the rule of law?
Interestingly, there are many more Republican Senators up for reelection than the Democrats during this coming election cycle. How each Republican Senator votes may well determine whether or not they keep their seat. Now that their own power is on the line, will they choose Dictatorship or Democracy?
Sadly, given the past behavior over the last two years, many will no doubt choose Dictatorship. Having already given up any standard of reason or sanity, they will no doubt willingly go down with the ship. Many others, however, will be forced to rethink their priorities and positions and what it is they want to stand for before it is too late. Maybe enough of the GOP Senators will choose to survive and vote against their president, perhaps even mounting a veto-proof majority to stop his unconstitutional power grab, and put him back in his highchair where he belongs. We can only hope and pray that enough of them choose this path. It would be shocking if these spineless worms found their spines after all, but it would be extremely good for our country. And this might portend that they would be willing then to vote for the impeachment trial that will obviously come within the year. But let’s not hold our collective breath, since the Republicans are a repugnant bunch.
But regardless of how Republican Senators vote now, whether on the president’s unconstitutional power grab or at his forthcoming impeachment trial, no prayers will be able to save the GOP from itself and its own destruction. Nothing Republicans do now can in any way redeem them from the unforgivable pact they signed with the Devil more than two years ago. Having already proven that the GOP is unable and unwilling to govern, nothing can redeem them from the evil contract they made, nothing can save their party from extinction. Like a wounded whale out of water, it is already breathing its last breath. The stench of its carcass will soon be dead and buried.
It will take a few decades after the GOP’s final collapse in 2020, to rebuild, reform and restructure a new conservative party in the political wilderness. But given the destruction that they and their president have wrought upon the country and upon our democracy everywhere we look, they will have nothing better to do with their time. Without any party or power or political base left, they will have plenty of time to repent and regret the day they ever took power of all three branches of government in 2016, and perhaps by 2050 or so, they will have found a soul and a conscience and a new reason to begin anew.