Update to The GQP Midterm Agenda: All Culture Wars, All The Time – And Making You ‘Lucky Duckies’ Pay More Taxes:

Mitch McConnell has told colleagues and donors Senate Republicans won’t release a legislative agenda before next year’s midterms, according to people who’ve attended private meetings with the minority leader.


[S]enate Republican leaders have no plans to release an alternative agenda as they try to win back the majority this fall. So Sen. Rick Scott is pursuing his own plan.

[A]s Paul Waldman writes, Rick Scott reveals the GOP’s election strategy: All culture war, all the time:

Sen. Rick Scott of Florida, chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, which tries to elect Republicans to the Senate, has released an 11-point blueprint that he hopes all Republicans will rally around as the midterms approach.

It’s as good a summary as you’ll find of what passes for an “agenda” for today’s Republican Party, in all its vulgar, paranoid, resentful glory.

The document’s first words are “Dear Fellow Americans, the militant left now controls the entire federal government, the news media, academia, Hollywood, and most corporate boardrooms,” and it only gets worse from there.

The 11 points resemble policy proposals, but every one is wrapped in culture-war provocation. Is the critical race theory panic No. 1? Of course it is: “Our kids will say the pledge of allegiance, salute the Flag, learn that America is a great country, and choose the school that best fits them,” reads the first item.

From there, we get a string of meaningless chest-thumping (“We will protect, defend, and promote the American Family at all costs”), culture-war grunts (“Men are men, women are women, and unborn babies are babies”), and the requisite nod to Trump (“We will secure our border, finish building the wall, and name it after President Donald Trump”).

And because it wouldn’t be a GOP “policy” document without inane ideas to make government less efficient and effective, it includes requiring “term limits” for government employees (heaven forbid we should have people with experience working in public service) and suggests cutting IRS funding and staffing by 50 percent.

The “Grim Reaper of Democracy,” Mitch McConnell, was most displeased with his NRSC Chair going rogue on him and proposing an agenda which makes it easy for Democrats to draw a comparison and contrast to their radical Republican opponents (Rick Scott was one of the eight insurrectionist Republican Senators on January 6, 2021).

Another radical Republican insurrectionist in the House, Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ), who was the chair of the House GQP Freedom (sic) Caucus – more accurately described as the GQP House Fascist Caucus – between the time of the 2020 election and the January 6 MAGA/QAnon violent insurrection at the Capitol, on the very day that the House Select Committee on January 6 requested that he and two other GQP congressmen speak to the committee about their roles in plotting the Coup, tried to distract by by issuing his own “America First Contract” (on America).

This didn’t garner any media attention outside of the far-right echo chamber. The Washington Times (i.e., the Mooney Times) reported Rep. Andy Biggs debuts ‘America First Contract’ with aggressive conservative agenda for GOP majority:

Rep. Andy Biggs has unveiled his “America First Contract” to guide the GOP to a House majority in November with pledges to crack down on President Biden’s weak border policies and launch investigations of top Democrats.

Mr. Biggs, Arizona Republican, gave The Washington Times a preview of the contract, saying it provides conservatives a vision to rally behind and delivers a positive message as an alternative to negative campaigning.

We need to have a really positive outlook, positive platform,” Mr. Biggs, a former chairman of the archconservative House Freedom Caucus, said in an interview. “I wanted to be very different from saying, ‘We’re not as bad as those guys,’ and saying, ‘We have a positive way to resolve any issues that are coming.’ That was the genesis for this idea.”

Are you effin’ kidding me? “A positive outlook?” As Paul Waldman said about Rick Scott’s 11 point plan, “It’s as good a summary as you’ll find of what passes for an ‘agenda’ for today’s Republican Party, in all its vulgar, paranoid, resentful glory,” times squared.

Read the America First Contract (on America) if you can stomach  it. Here are just the topic headings with my critique:

Reduce inflation nd strengtthen the economy. And how does this insurrectionist propose to do this? The tired old worn out Republican proposal for a constitutional balanced budget amendment that has been kicking around for over 40 years and has zero chance of ever being ratified by 38 states. As has often been reported over the last 40 years or so, a balanced budget amendment would be an epic disaster. A balanced budget amendment would be extraordinarily dangerous for the economy” “[T]he simple fact is that the economic consequences of a balanced budget amendment range from extremely bad to catastrophic. The reason for this is that a BBA would amplify any negative economic shock to the economy and would thereby turn run-of-the-mill recessions into disasters.”

For good measure this insurrectionist throws in the tired old worn out Republican talking point for more government deregulation. That’s it.  Biggs quite literally does not offer one single idea that would actually reduce inflation or strengthen the economy. “Zero, zip, zilch, nada.”

Secure Our Border. And how does this insurrectionist propose to do this? He wants to restore the Remain in Mexico Policy, that is currently before the U.S. Supreme Court, which is going to have something to say about it by the end of June. Supreme Court hears case over ending “Remain in Mexico” rule for asylum-seekers. This was a Stephen Miller special. And of course, he wants to complete the border fence (but drops Trump’s bullshit line about Mexico is going to pay for it, becase you are going to pay for it).

Then he moves on to the GQP culture war issues du jure.

Restore Transparency ad Parental Choice in Education. He studiously avoids using the terms “Critical Race Theory,” “grooming” and “book banning,” but we all know this is what he is talking about, borrowed from Glenn Youngkin’s campaign in Virginia last year and spread to GQP state legislatures and governors everywhere.

He, of course, makes the obligatory pitch for school choice, which is about privatization and destroying public education.

Reduce Violent Crime and Preserve The Rule of Law. Is this insurrectionist effin’ serious? How about every one of the indivduals involved in plotting the coup, the organizers and financiers, and the violent MAGA/QAnon insurrectionists who stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021 are prosecuted and do time in prison, including Donald Trump and GQP members of Congress and state legislators. Then you can talk to me about the rule of law.

Biggs falsely asserts that Democrats are “defunding the police.” President Biden has always rejected this idea and is putting more money into policing in his budget. Maybe Biggs should support the Biden budget.

Biggs wants to cut off federal funds to jurisdictions that are repurposing funds for public safety. This is Big Brother dictating to local jurisdictions how best to manage their local communities, i.e., federal overreach, and a violation of federalism.

Restore Eelction Integrity. Again, is this insurrectionist effin’ serious? He is a promoter of Trump’s Big Lie, and was implicated in the January 6 insurrection. Freedom Caucus Chair Andy Biggs Helped Plan January 6 Event, Lead Organizer Says; Kelli Ward, Andy Biggs Under Scrutiny for January 6 Texts to White House. And this traitor who wanted to overthrow the government refuses to cooperate with the January 6 Committee.

Biggs wants to “protect state authority over elections.” What he really means is that he wants the Supreme Court to recognize the far-right fringe theory of the Independent State Legislature doctrine, so that a  state legislature can overturn the popular will of the voters in a fair and free election, and appoint their own partisan electors to the Electoral College.

Biggs also says he wants to repeal “unconstitutional” provisions of the National Voting Rights Act and Help America Vote Act. Not clear what he means by the National Voting Rights Act – is he talking about the Voting Rights Act of 1965, or The National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (colloquially known as the “motor voter law”)? Both laws were passed with broad bipartisan support. The Supreme Court has already gutted the Voting Rights Act, so he must be objecting to motor-voter voter registration. Arizona was a pioneer in online voter registration by the way, by a Republican controlled Arizona legislature.

The Help America Vote Act (2002) was in response to the disputed election of 2000. It passed the House 357-48 and 92-2 in the Senate, as was signed by president George W. Bush. HAVA mandated that all states and localities upgrade many aspects of their election procedures, including their voting machines, registration processes and poll worker training. The specifics of implementation have been left up to each state, which allows for varying interpretations of the federal law. What he is really objecting to was the creation od the federal Election Assistance Commission to assist in the administration of federal elections.

It is clear that this fringy insurrectionist is far outside the bipartisan mainstream of both parties.

Break Up Big Tech. Biggs is not talking about the all intrusive collection of data for commercial purposes by Big Tech. No, he objects to social media companies’ “power over public and private speech,” i.e., the power to moderate speech, such as Twitter and Facebook shutting down Donald Trump’s accounts after he incited a seditious insurrection on January 6.

He also wants to “remove liability protections of Section 230,” i.e., 47 U.S. Code § 230 – Protection for private blocking and screening of offensive material, specifically:

(c) Protection for “Good Samaritan” blocking and screening of offensive material

(1) Treatment of publisher or speaker
No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.

(2) Civil liability
No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be held liable on account of—

(A) any action voluntarily taken in good faith to restrict access to or availability of material that the provider or user considers to be obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, excessively violent, harassing, or otherwise objectionable, whether or not such material is constitutionally protected; or
(B) any action taken to enable or make available to information content providers or others the technical means to restrict access to material described in paragraph (1).

So what Biggs really wants is the unregulated right to spew disinformation, hate speech, and abusive trolling on social media, so his Fascist Caucus can destroy democracy even quicker.

Put ‘America First’ In Foreign, Energy And Trade Policies. Biggs flat out lies “The Biden Administration has weakened the United States in international relations, made America energy dependent on foreign oil producers like OPEC and Russia, and sent jobs overseas.”

It was Donald Trump’s Tariff Wars, his undermining of U.S. relations with our allies, his hostility towards NATO and other joint secuirty organizations – all in service to his pal Vladimire Putin, which weakened U.S. international relations. With the War in Ukraine waged by Trump’s pal Putin, Biden has restored NATO and our international relations with the European Union and the United Nations.

In November 2019, the United States became a net exporter of all oil products, including both refined petroleum products and crude oil. By 2021 the US was the world’s largest producer. Biden’s First Year Drilling Permitting Stomps Trump’s By 34%.

Biggs wants to “remove the executive orders that have killed the American energy industry.” What he means is the canceled Keystone XL Pipeline, and increased royalties on companies extracting oil from federal land – your land.

The Biden Plan To Ensure The Future Is “Made In All Of America” By All Of America’s Workers is a comprehensive manufacturing and innovation strategy will marshall the resources of the federal government in ways that we have not seen since World War II. “This whole-of-government effort is leading to an historic recovery in domestic manufacturing—since President Biden took office, the economy added 375,000 manufacturing jobs – the most in nearly 30 years. The U.S. economy grew at the fastest pace in nearly 40 years in 2021, and manufacturing as a share of U.S. GDP has returned to pre-pandemic levels. FACT SHEET: Biden-⁠Harris Administration Delivers on Made in America Commitments.

And what objective, fully developed polices does Biggs propose? He’s got nothing. “Zero, zip, zilch, nada.”

This word salad is what passes for his polices:

Advancing an America First approach to our foreign policy, energy policy, and trade policy by focusing on the needs and goals of Americans, not the perceptions of foreign or domestic rivals who would have us devalue our own lives and beliefs in service of their ideologies.

And if you loved the eight Benghazi! hearings which produced a nothing burger, but harmed the perception of Secrerary of State Hillary Clinton (so mission accomplished), you are really going to love their next shitshow investigations and waste of taxpayer money for partisan warfare: “Investigate the Afghanistan debacle and the origin of COVID.”

Does this include all 20 years of te Afghanistan debacle? Or just the withdrawal, the most successful evacuation from a war that the U.S. lost? And the QAnon conspiracy theories about biological labs in China and gain-of-function research, trying to criminalize Dr. Fauci? Is this the shitshow you want to empower, America? Haven’t we all heard enough of this insanity already?

Reinstate Good Government Practices. First of all, Republicans do not believe in good government practices, they never have! They are the anti-government party, remember?

Biggs simply makes a personal attack on Nancy Pelosi, the most powerful and most successful Speaker of the House in generations. Biggs appears to want to devolve power in the House from leadership and committee chairs to individual members who want to engage in performance politics, like the members of Biggs’ GQP Fascist Caucus.

Biggs concludes by calling for Oversight Committees to hit the ground running in January 2023, which is rich for an insurrectionist who is refusing to cooperate with the January 6 Committee investigating the worst crime committed against the U.S. government and the Amercan people since the Confederacy waged a civil war.

What does Biggs want to investigate:

  1. Stock trading by members of Congress [He is not serious about this]

  2. Abuse of authority by government agencies against political opponents [i.e., the investigation of the Trump administration and Republican members of Congress for seditious insurrection against the government]

  3. Due Process received or denied by those charged with political crimes [this is the bullshit “Justice for J6” in MAGA land, trying to make martyrs out of the violent MAGA/QAnon insurrectionists on Janaury 6]

  4. Inappropriate relationships of the Biden family with China and other foreign governments [read Hunter Biden]

  5. Refusal of the Biden Administration to secure our border [this is the anti-immigrant hysteria “white fright” 2022 midterm election strategy]

  6. Origins of COVID-19 and U.S. government participation in/funding of gain-of-function research in China [this is the QAnon conspiracy theory trying to criminalize Dr. Fauci]

  7. Abuse of speech in the public square by big tech [as I said, what Biggs really wants is the unregulated right to spew disinformation, hate speech, and abusive trolling on social media, so his Fascist Caucus can destroy democracy even quicker]

  8. Abuses of former Speaker Pelosi’s January 6 Committee

This last one is the seditious insurrectionist traitors to their country, the 147 Republican lawmakers who still objected to the election results even after the Capitol attack, wanting to exact revenge against their political “enemies’ for wanting to hold them accountabe at law.

This is how democracy dies and the darkness of fascism descends on America.

Biggs’ America First Contract (on America) is an unserious joke.