The Other Train Wreck That America Only Narrowly Avoided
Republican Senators’ unwillingness to impeach Trump for “incitement of insurrection” displays what their priorities would’ve been, had they kept control of the chamber
Without fully rehashing Trump’s 2nd Senate trial, in which only 7 Republican Senators joined all Democrats voting to convict, let’s start by very quickly taking a step back and asking, first of all, why weren’t most Republicans in the House and Senate willing to impeach and convict Trump?
January 6th remains about the clearest point A to point B line possible ever between Trump and a naked attempt to undermine the U.S. Constitution and overthrow the U.S. government. The culmination of a nakedly premeditated effort to mass his most flammable supporters within shouting distance of the Capitol and then lighting a match. Just because he’s a sore loser. No “witch hunt”.
And on top of all that, Trump lost the White House, lost Republicans the House 2-years ago, and lost them the Senate this January by focusing on his own lies and desperation, and not what it was his party needed to succeed. In fact, he betrayed his party in favor of a repetition of his own grievances.
And a good thing too. Because what the impeachment trial has shown us, is one of the biggest reasons most Republicans will not be moved even though they themselves were under attack, and Trump expressly threatened the life of Vice President Mike Pence in the interest of nothing but his own vanity, which I’ve also been saying for weeks is one of the most important and until recently, most under-covered pieces of this story, is that Republicans want and feel they need to perpetuate Trump’s lies about election fraud, at least to some degree, in some form, in order to continue to win elections in the future. And that’s what a lot of this is about.
Perhaps even more so than placating Trump’s base. Because if they lose those voters, they won’t be going and voting for Democrats in most cases, they just won’t be voting. So yeah, it gives a base layer of support, maybe. But even that’s not as powerful — they apparently perceive — as perpetuating some form of what everybody’s calling Trump’s “big lie”.