I have said it before and I will say it again: The GOP has become the party of Roy Moore and Donald Trump.
Back in mid-November when the Roy Moore serial child sexual predator scandal first broke, the RNC pulled financial, ground game support for Roy Moore in Alabama Senate race, and Republican senators, including the Septuagenarian Ninja Turtle, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, were saying they had no reason to doubt the claims of nine women against Roy Moore and that he should withdraw from the race. McConnell Says Roy Moore Should Withdraw From Senate Race in Alabama. The GOP even contemplated extra-constitutional means to run a write-in candidate to replace Roy Moore on the ballot. The Republican Party’s Dream of an Alabama Write-In Candidate Is Dead.
What a difference a few weeks makes. In an instant replay of last year when the GOP was freaking out over the Access Hollywood tape of Donald Trump admitting to being a serial sexual predator to Billie Bush and GOP politicians were fleeing from endorsing their party’s nominee, and Vice Presidential nominee Mike Pence was plotting a “coup” to replace Trump as the GOP nominee for president, God’s Plan for Mike Pence, in a few weeks they all came back to supporting Trump, because GOP tribalism. IOKIYAR.
Serial sexual predator Donald Trump has consistently stood by serial child sexual predator Roy Moore, and he has dragged the GOP along with him. All is forgiven. The GOP has become the party of Roy Moore and Donald Trump. Roy Moore Gets Trump Endorsement and R.N.C. Funding for Senate Race:
President Trump on Monday strongly endorsed Roy S. Moore, the Republican nominee for a United States Senate seat here, prompting the Republican National Committee to restore its support for a candidate accused of sexual misconduct against teenage girls.
Mr. Trump’s endorsement strengthened what had been his subdued, if symbolically significant, embrace of Mr. Moore’s campaign. At Mr. Trump’s direct urging, and to the surprise of some Republican Party officials, the national committee, which severed ties to Mr. Moore weeks ago, opened a financial spigot that could help Mr. Moore with voter turnout in the contest’s closing days.
Mr. Trump’s endorsement and the party’s reversal hours later came a day after Senator Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, had stepped back from his earlier criticism of Mr. Moore, saying Alabama voters should “make the call” on whether to send Mr. Moore to the Senate. Taken together, the week’s developments suggested that Republicans were increasingly confident that Mr. Moore is well positioned to defeat Doug Jones, the Democratic nominee, in next week’s special election.
But even as senior Republicans again coalesced around Mr. Moore, there were reminders that the party’s internal divide over its nominee remained. Mitt Romney, the party’s presidential nominee in 2012, warned that Mr. Moore’s presence in Congress would be “a stain” on Republicans and the country.
“No vote, no majority is worth losing our honor, our integrity,” Mr. Romney wrote on Twitter.
Sorry, Mitt, but that ship already sailed last November. This is what the GOP is today.
Mr. McConnell, for instance, refrained Sunday from criticizing Mr. Moore or repeating earlier remarks indicating that the Senate might expel Mr. Moore if he were seated after numerous accusations of misconduct and unwanted overtures. Nine women have come forward in recent weeks to describe their encounters with Mr. Moore, including a woman who said that Mr. Moore molested her when she was 14 years old.
With the notable exception of Mr. Romney, many national Republicans seem to have shifted their approach: less active criticism of Mr. Moore and fewer threats of his swift expulsion from Congress, and more guarded comments, if any at all.
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Many top White House officials were not aware that Mr. Trump intended to fully tie himself to Mr. Moore on Monday; as in so many instances, they found out about his decision from his posts on Twitter.
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Mr. Trump disregarded, and irritated, some of his more cautious advisers on Monday in prompting the R.N.C. to restore get-out-the-vote funds to Mr. Moore, according to one Republican in contact with the president. The Senate Republican campaign arm, which is controlled by Mr. McConnell, had no plans to offer financial help to Mr. Moore, officials said.
Even to some of his allies, Mr. Trump’s decision to link the party to someone accused of preying on teenagers marked another example of his impulsive style and penchant for creating new controversies when he is under fire.
There is no end to the rationalizations that Tea-Publicans will make in support of Roy Moore or Donald Trump. In the end, it all comes down to GOP tribalism. The Washington Post’s conservative blogger Jennifer Rubin writes, Forget ‘But Gorsuch’ — it should be ‘But the victims’ (excerpt):
Moore has denied even knowing these women. But Trump, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) (Let Alabama voters decide!), the White House staff, a slew of GOP operatives, the governor of Alabama and a segment of the conservative media refuse to recognize reality — or, worse, don’t care if the allegations of sexual misconduct with minors are true. Gosh darn, they need the accused child predator’s vote for tax reform! Facts carry no weight with these people, so those who’ve decided the GOP can tolerate an alleged child sex predator in the U.S. Senate won’t be influenced by more evidence, no matter how irrefutable.
You see, once Republicans decided that Justice Neil Gorsuch, or a tax bill, or deregulation, or anything justified whatever egregious behavior and character flaws Trump and then Moore had, then anything and everything could be rationalized away. I’m quite certain that if David Duke ran on support for the tax plan, Republicans would embrace him. This is moral madness, particularly for a party that fancies itself the party of family values.
It’s a telling moment when one party and its president embrace someone against whom so much evidence of egregious wrongdoing has been presented. Mitt Romney tweeted, “Roy Moore in the US Senate would be a stain on the GOP and on the nation. Leigh Corfman and other victims are courageous heroes. No vote, no majority is worth losing our honor, our integrity.” But Republicans already have. I’d like to think a Romney or a governor like Ohio’s John Kasich could run in a primary and beat Trump, but if he stumbles through the Robert Mueller investigation, it’s hard to image the party abandoning him, especially with “respectable” conservatives doling out talking points (Oh, it’s only a tweet! We don’t really know what happened!)
There is no going back for the GOP. Trump may go, but the people willing to accept Trump — and Moore — will be around. And there is no policy alliance possible, no common bond to be had for a great many Republicans and ex-Republicans with those who’d elevate tax cuts or Gorsuch or any issue above a long line of victims. They’d set Moore (and before him, Trump) as a model and entrust to his character the most important issues of state. To those who find that anathema, there is no going back into the GOP fold with the Trump enablers.
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That [Trump] is ignorant, erratic, dishonest, incoherent, divisive and destructive — yet still commands the party’s support — demonstrates that Republicans have made a cold calculation. They gladly put a memory-addled narcissist in the White House with no regard for democracy, because we need the 20 percent marginal tax rate or because we need Gorsuch to uphold traditional values on the bench. The hypocrisy would be laughable if the entire situation and the moral debasement of a national party, and our politics, were not so horrifying.
As the Washington Post editorialized, Is a Senate seat really worth this?
BTW, oral arguments were heard in the New York Supreme Court on Tuesday in the defamation lawsuit brought by Summer Zervos against Donald Trump. Former ‘Apprentice’ contestant in court against Trump:
Marc Kasowitz, a lawyer for the president, spoke during oral arguments in New York Supreme Court this afternoon, saying the lawsuit brought by Summer Zervos would impede the ability of the president to do his job. An attorney for Zervos, Marian Wong, said the person holding the office of president is not above the law. The hearing was adjourned without any immediate decision as the judge took both attorneys’ arguments under advisement.
Zervos, a former contestant on NBC’s “The Apprentice,” was one of more than a dozen women who came forward during the presidential campaign and accused Trump of inappropriate conduct ranging from sexual harassment to sexual assault.
Trump denied all the allegations of sexual misconduct against him, calling his accusers liars and threatening to sue them, but now Zervos is the one whose lawyer is facing off with Trump’s lawyer in court.
Kasowitz said his motion to dismiss Zervos’ defamation claim “has nothing to do with putting anyone above the law.” He said it’s about “protecting the ability of the president to do his constitutionally-mandated job.”
Sorry, Dude. Clinton v. Jones, 520 U.S. 681 (1997), the landmark United States Supreme Court case established that a sitting President of the United States has no immunity from civil law litigation against him or her, for acts done before taking office and unrelated to the office. Your argument fails.
Kasowitz also added that he believes the New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan has no jurisdiction over the president while he is in office.
“State court can’t exercise any control over the president under any circumstances,” Kasowitz told Judge Jennifer Schechter.
“What better place to hear a defamation case against a born-and-bred New Yorker?” Wong, an attorney for Zervos, responded.
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Kasowitz also said the case should be dismissed because Zervos’ sexual misconduct claim and the president’s denial of it came during a political campaign.
“The plaintiff saw fit three weeks before the election to make claims about the president that could be damaging,” Kasowitz said. “She wanted the public to take into account her experience and Mr. Trump’s denials. That’s politics.”
It was not just “politics,” it was an allegation of sexual assault:
During the campaign, Zervos, who was a competitor on the fifth season of “The Apprentice,” came forward and alleged that Trump abused his role as a potential employer — kissing her twice during a meeting at Trump Tower in New York, and later groping and kissing her in a California hotel room.
“He grabbed my shoulder and began kissing me again aggressively and placed his hand on my breast,” Zervos said at an October 2016 press conference.
Zervos says she did not report the alleged incident to the authorities at the time.
In the lawsuit, Zervos’ attorney wrote that while Trump claimed that Zervos was lying, “it was Donald Trump who was lying when he falsely denied his predatory misconduct with Summer Zervos, and derided her for perpetrating a ‘hoax’ and making up a ‘phony’ story to get attention.”
“Donald Trump lied again, and again, and again, and again, and again. In doing so, he used his national and international bully pulpit to make false factual statements to denigrate and verbally attack Ms. Zervos and the other women who publicly reported his sexual assaults in October 2016,” Zervos’ lawsuit stated.
In Trump world, women are mere sexual objects and are never to be believed and attacked if they say anything about you. We’ll see what the New York Supreme Court has to say.