(Side note: lost in the news coverage is that Trump also dismissively said that he has never called the FBI to report anything in his life, suggesting that it was idiotic and naive to think that anyone would or even should. What this misses is that a) the FBI has long records of concerned law-abiding citizens doing just that, and b) no, most crime families don't call the FBI when they see illegal transgressions.)
To be clear, this isn't the findings of the two-year investigation of the Mueller Report. This is merely what Trump has done in the last two days. All in his spare time between insisting that no less than his "enemies" literally praised him for giving the "greatest speech ever on foreign soil by a U.S. president" and saying that "the moon is a part of Mars."
And for all that, none of my complaints here are about Trump It's Trump, after all. He's abnormal. This is abnormal. We know it, we get it, we don't accept it, we're appalled by it. But it happens several times a week -- and some weeks it happens several times a day. And there will be more next week, or possibly tomorrow. Or maybe tomorrow morning and then again in the afternoon. And maybe at night when he can't sleep and is watching "Fox News" praise him. So, each time he does goes off half-cocked we file it in the "This is not normal" folder and keep all the outrages on record for the impeachment trial or election campaign, whichever comes first.
No, once again, this is about the elected members of the Republican Party who were silent the past two days. Not a word or whisper of even polite, "excuse me, er...a point of personal privilege, if I may" complaint, let alone head-exploding outrage. Republican men and women in Congress -- themselves having also all sworn an oath to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic" -- who enable Trump and his actions that are just barely on the good side of treason. And which I would suggest, by their deliberately enabling Trump, are themselves on the good side of treason.
(I say "on the good side" because, as much as the word "treason" gets tossed around, the Supreme Court has given it an actual, legal definition, and among other specific conditions "treason" must occur during a time of declared war. So, Trump and the Republican members of Congress skirt by the good side on a technicality)
So, it's not officially treason. Much the same way that margarine isn't butter. But you can use it as a close substitute in almost all recipes.
Legally treason or not, I've noted often in the past that the Trump administration is fascist. Not as a hyperbolic synonym of anything. I mean, quite literally, "fascist," by the actual dictionary definition of its meaning, as I specifically detailed in this article here. And the elected Republican members of Congress are perfectly fine enabling that, as well. Making them, at best, supporters of fascism. And at worst, what they most likely have morphed into -- actual, literal fascists.
They are silent and enabling of it all.
So, if not fascism and being just barely on the good side of treason, what on earth does it take to appall today's Republican Party??
Getting wistful for a moment, I'm happily able to remember a time Republicans did manage to get absolutely gut-wrenching horrified. It was when President Barack Obama wore a cream-colored suit to a press conference. And also there was the time they were close to wanting to string President Obama up (and yes, I use that phrase intentionally) when he...when he -- the leader of the free world, the most powerful man in the world, the commander-in-chief of U.S. armed forces, chief executive of the United States -- put his feet on his desk!
That was what horrified Republicans.
Not for defending a murderous dictator, and slamming the CIA for protecting the U.S. from an nuclear threat, and being willing to accept information from a foreign enemy against an American political opponent. And all that is just within the past TWO DAYS!!! We haven't even touched on acquiescing to Putin and Russia, China, Saudi Arabia , the Mueller Report, keeping Wilbur Ross and Elaine Chao in his cabinet rather than prison, separating immigrant children from their parents, supporting other dictators like Erdogan and Duterte, and everything else sliming through the garbage chute over the last two years.
The Republicans in Congress are okay with all of that. All of it. They have been silent and supportive of it all for two years by their silence and actions. They not only enable Trump, they encourage him.
That's why this is not about Trump. We know who he is. This is about the Republican members of Congress. If these elected officials lived up to their sworn oaths -- not even all the time which would be stressful to them, just merely a paltry third when even they couldn't stomach the worst -- Trump would be done. He would know he didn't have a clean slate to do whatever fascist, almost-treasonous thing he wanted and be aware there would be consequences, including the nagging fear that he could actually, possibly be convicted of impeachment in the Senate.
But the Republicans in Congress can't even meet that lowly, slovenly, one-third standard. They hover around 1% at best. Over 100 outrages they might possibly rise in finger-wagging petulance to say, gee, y'know, we really do have to put sanctions on Russia because they actually did cyberattack us -- but, hey, if you don't want to enforce them, well...okay, but we did our part.
This is about the elected officials of the Republican Party. They enable and encourage Trump, and put us all at literal risk.