The Republican Party Has Gone Dangerously Off The Rails

7-20-21
   It’s really scary how off the rails so much of the Republican Party has become.
   Think about it. Really think about what’s going on.
   The Republican party in many ways is now controlled by one person, Donald Trump. That in itself undermines democracy and what democracy is supposed to be about. What makes it even worse in this case is how twisted, disturbed, and authoritarian Trump’s outrageous behavior is. He lies on a colossal scale which is made even more dangerous by the way his blind followers go right along with with these lies without question. They let him get away with it, which in turn encourages his terrible behavior even more.
   Let’s look at one example: the 2020 election. This election was free and fair. There was no widespread fraud. Every single state, including those run by Republican officials, certified the election because it was free and fair. International observers from multiple countries were present monitoring the election, and they stated the election was free and fair. There were Republican, Democrat, and Independent observers in all the ballot counting rooms in every state. Add to all this the fact that Trump and his people went to court over 60 times trying to push their outrageous false claims of widespread fraud and lost. And many of the judges who ruled against Trump had been appointed by Republicans themselves. The reason Trump and his people lost over 60 court cases in connection to the election is because they have no case. They have no evidence that would stand up in a court of law. It is very clear that Trump lost the election fair and square. But Trump doesn’t like to lose and wants power, so he has continued making his false, dangerous claims about the election even though they are flat out lies. And despite the fact that his claims are totally false, his followers blindly go along with them spreading these dangerous falsehoods.  And we all saw how on January 6th, all these false claims about the election led to a mob of extremist Trump supporters assaulting United States Capitol Building in an attempt to stop Congress from certifying this free and fair election. And yet despite all this, Trump and his supporters continue pushing their dangerous, undemocratic false claims about the election.
   This brings us to Republicans in elected positions, the majority of whom are bowing to Trump’s authoritarian leadership over the party. Some of these officials are blind followers of Trump themselves while others secretly may not like Trump but continue to bow to him because they are afraid of losing future primary elections. In other words, this latter group is putting their own desire for political power over American democracy. In Washington DC, only a few Congressional Republicans are willing to speak out against Trump.
   This state of affairs is quite scary and truly is dangerous to our democracy. We need to be aware of what is happening and stand up for our democratic values and speak out against authoritarianism in all its forms. We need to put pressure on more Republicans to break away from Trump’s extremist, undemocratic authoritarianism. And in future elections, we need to vote in people who stand for true democracy. Considering how much of the Republican Party is currently under the sway of Trump, in the next few elections, we need to vote in Democrats as much as possible in order to ensure our democracy endures. And I say this as an Independent (I’m not a Democrat). Right now, with so much of the Republican Party following an authoritarian leader, which is what Trump is, the Republican Party cannot be trusted with majority control over the government.

What Happened to Civil Debate, Open-mindedness, the Ability to Compromise, and Getting Things Done in US Politics?

7-9-21
   You know what, democracy can be messy. It sure can. When you look at history, there are plenty of examples of that. A democracy is made up of plethora of different people and viewpoints so that everyone’s not going to agree on everything. There will be disagreements. Political parties push their agendas and vie for more power. At times, arguments can get passionate and quite heated. Again, if you look at the past, there are plenty of examples. The problem these days is that divisions and severe partisanship have gotten dangerously extreme.
   If you look back at the 1980s and 1990s in Washington DC politics, sure, there were plenty of disagreements and battles in Congress. But there was also compromise and bipartisanship as well. Republicans and Democrats in Congress could sit down and hash out compromises to get things done. Senator Ted Kennedy for example was very liberal and quite passionate about his views, yet he could also sit down with Republicans and hammer out a deal to get legislation passed. While neither side got everything they wanted, in the end, they would get legislation passed for the good of the American people. Sure, it wasn’t perfect. But they were able to get things done much better than today.
   Even before Donald Trump took office, political divisions were getting pretty severe, and then when Trump took office, they got much worse since he made a point to encourage and exacerbate divisiveness. We’re seeing political extremes who don’t want to compromise, and while both parties have been guilty of this lately, the Republicans have gotten much worse about it. A disturbing example of this is the statement by Texas Republican Chip Roy when he said that he would “oppose almost everything that Congress does.” He clearly means that he intends to try to stop any significant legislation that is proposed by the Democratic majority in large part to try to increase the chances of Republicans gaining seats in the 2022 midterm elections. And Roy is not the only one guilty of this. Mitch McConnell for some years now has been going out of his way to obstruct and stop legislation proposed by Democrats in his obsession to try to gain and hold a Republican majority in the Senate. Since he is the Republican leader in the Senate, he is essentially trying to gain and hold as much power as he can in that chamber.
   It seems that too many people in Congress are showing more loyalty to their party than to the United States Constitution and the American people as a whole. And in the Republicans’ case, too many are bowing to the authoritarian style whims and demands of Donald Trump as well. This goes against what Democracy is supposed to be about.
   I’m not one of those people that glorifies the old days so to speak. While I think history is fascinating, it is important to be honest about the past and try to understand the good, the bad and the in-between. But one thing I will say is that we need to regain the ability to talk to one another, to listen to one another, to be open minded, to compromise, and to get things done. Both Democrats and Republicans need to do better in this regard. Furthermore, in the Republican Party’s case, they need to separate themselves from Donald Trump and his dangerously authoritarian tendencies and lies. Democracy frequently requires compromise because of the diversity of society. Everyone needs to remember that it’s more important to stand up for the United States Constitution, the American people, and Democracy than be blindly loyal and follow a particular political party or individual. Too many people these days are essentially being more loyal to their political party (and in many Republicans’ case, to Donald Trump) than to the United States Constitution. This trend is not only disturbing, it’s dangerous because history is full of examples of things like this and how they can lead to authoritarianism and dictatorship.