Just a preliminary reminder before we get down to cases. The United States Congress is organized in such a way that legislation originates in the House of Representatives and is approved or disapproved in the Senate. In a normal relationship, all bills sent down from the House are read, debated and voted upon in the Senate.
‘A’ is the partisan work stoppage in the Senate
As of now, 395 bills are on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s desk and he has publicly stated that “we will not bring those bills up for a vote.” America knows Congress is broken and suffers an all-time low 18% approval rating by citizens, less positively viewed than cockroaches. Cockroaches don’t live like that. They are communal insects and take care of one another. Did you ever see a homeless cockroach? 350 million years and not a single homeless cockroach.
McConnell found time to load the courts with far-right Republican judges, but no time for the constitutional business of House of Representatives because (and only because) its majority is Democrat. Mr. Smirk is way lower than a cockroach.
‘B’ is the death of Bipartisanism
Well that began in earnest when Newt Gingrich (Speaker of the House ’95 to ’99) instilled a “combative” approach within the Republican Party, where hateful language and hyper-partisanship became commonplace, and where democratic norms were abandoned. Gingrich frequently questioned the patriotism of Democrats, called them corrupt, compared them to fascists, and accused them of wanting to destroy the United States (Wikipedia). He suggested Republicans use betray, bizarre, decay, destroy, devour, greed, lie, pathetic, radical, selfish, shame, sick, steal, and traitors when speaking or writing about Democrats.
In answer to your obvious question about whether cockroaches refer to each other that way, the answer is no.
Twenty-five years later, we are witness to the long-term effect of power over principle in politics. Abraham Lincoln said, “Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a men’s character, give him power.”
‘C’ is the rape of the United States Constitution
It’s been abused, no doubt. But our history is rampant with constitutional controversy, which is why the Supreme Court exists as the third leg of the American platform of governance. These times are different.
There was outrage when the Supreme Court chose on December 12, 2000 to end the Florida recount and seat George W. Bush as president. Editorials in the country’s leading newspapers were overwhelmingly critical of the decision, but no right-wing armed groups took to the streets. Nationwide outcry attended the court’s decision that corporations shared the individual right to make political expenditures under the First Amendment, prompting a wag to say, “I’ll believe a corporation is a person when the state of Texas executes one.”
What knocked the Constitution flat on its back and spread its legs, was a sitting president ignoring the nation’s laws and getting by with it. He once said, “When you are famous you can grab women by the pussy and get away with it.” With a national press more interested in controversy than truth and a Republican Party more interested in votes than Founding Father and second U.S. President John Adam’s famous concept of ‘a nation of laws, not men,’ President Trump had his way with the Constitution and got away with it. She lay bleeding on the floor.
There is quite possibly no further act of treason that could so egregiously and lastingly damage a nation.
Image: Wikimedia Commons