The bogus Nunes memo continued to get scorched on cable news yesterday, and Rep Nunes himself, who is from a “moderately safe” Republican district in CA, also got scorched by his hometown newspaper in a highly critical op-ed, and one of his potential Democratic challengers even raised $100k in a day thanks to blowback from Nunes’ ridiculous partisan stunt.
Meanwhile, an increasing number of Americans want Trump to testify under oath in the Mueller investigation, which would be wonderful but will never happen. Last week Trump insisted he would testify but his horrified lawyers walked the bluster back. Someday soon we can expect him to say “I want to testify but my lawyers won’t let me,” to try to save face.
We are reaching a point where GOP leaders who side with Trump will surely go down in history as co-conspirators to whatever crimes he and his family have committed. That the GOP doesn’t recognize (or care about) the cliff they are on is surreal. What seems to be happening in the broader public square, as week-after-week we careen from one grotesque insult or scandal to the next, is that Trump’s support is being whittled down to the ugly core. Numbers suggest it isn’t more than 30 to 35% of voting adults. In raw terms it’s a big number, but the number of people solidifying squarely against him is much larger and growing. As time goes by, fewer people will remain indifferent to Trump, and most of the people in the middle will feel betrayed by him. It’s already happening.
Some folks may get and additional $100 per month in take-home pay, but their health premiums will go up by just as much or more. Some people will get laid off from jobs they thought were secure (coal, Carrier). Some people who believe in law and order will be disgusted by Trump’s attack on the FBI. And so forth. It’s already happening.
It seems more important than ever to embrace two things at once. Be horrified and disgusted and outraged and vocal about the Trump disaster (and potential crimes). But also promote a positive vision for the people that are scared and living on the margins. We will never win over the hardcore bigots & haters. But the people who voted for Trump out of frustration with the status quo are becoming, however begrudgingly, disenchanted and angry all over again. They were conned.
A higher minimum wage will help them. Affordable healthcare will help them. Lower drug prices will help them. Tips and paid overtime will help them. Shrinking inequality will help them. Student loan access and affordability will help them. Real infrastructure spending will help them. Real job growth in industries of the future (solar) will help them.
If we can articulate what we are FOR and spend less time divided among ourselves, the Trump era will end sooner than later. When it comes to checks and balances, nothing beats voting.