Category: Republicans

Democrats’ Misguided Treatment of the Mueller Report

Are Democrats in 2020 going to again snatch defeat from the jaws of victory—or at a minimum lower their margin of victory?
We raise this question because of our unhappiness in how the Democrats have reacted to the Mueller report. Democrats had awaited its release with great anticipation, expecting it to deliver a heavy if not knock-out blow to Trump. Maybe even uncover an explicit crime that would provide the basis for impeachment.
Four weeks later, Trump’s approval rating has improved, and the report’s scathing indictment of Trump’s malfeasance, corruption, and incompetence has become obscured by endless Democratic palaver about the level of the report’s redactions and whether Attorney General William Barr committed perjury in his testimony to Congress should be held in contempt.
The Trump Administration is arrogantly resisting al Congressional attempts to elicit further testimony from Administration officials—with impunity.
The Democrats cannot even get Robert Mueller to come and testify.
Democrats, in short, instead of using the Mueller report as a platform to launch a powerful assault on Trump, are losing the attention and the patience of the American people.
But just as IndieDems was about to deliver its opinion, Walter Dellinger, Professor Emeritus of Law at Duke University and former head of the White House Office of Legal Counsel from 1993 to 1996, wrote a commentary expressing our outlook better than we could: “Democrats’ obsession with redaction is obscuring the obvious: Trump committed high crimes.” Excerpts:
  • House Democrats labeling the Mueller report as “inconclusive,” he says, is tepid and erroneous.
  • “They have not only allowed the president falsely to claim vindication but also left the public without a clear understanding of just how damning the report is.”
  • “The more I review the report, the more absurd and misleading the we-need-to-know-more response seems to be.”
  • “This report makes the unquestionable case that the president regularly and audaciously violated his oath and committed the most serious high crimes and misdemeanors” and also betrayed the president’s office.
Dellinger concludes: Instead of focusing focus on process, such as requesting redacted material, Democrats should be shouting from the rooftops that the available evidence is more than enough to prove Trump is unfit for office and deserves severe condemnation and sanction.
IndieDems heartily agrees.

The Rising Tide of Republican Racism and Lies

The Washington Post on May 14 published an op-ed by Senate Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy: “The House Must Stand Against the Toxic BDS Movement.”

“BDS” is the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, an international effort to convince to individuals, private corporations and even entire countries to refuse to invest in or do business with Israeli firms.

It;s bad enough that McConnell and McCarthy grossly misrepresent what BDS is all about. But they cross the line into outright lies and demagoguery by labeling the BDS movement as nothing but a tool in the “rising tide of anti-Semitism in the world, a scourge that is spreading in the Middle East, in Europe and even here in the United States. “

IndieDems Comment

If there were a Pulitzer Prize for pure hypocrisy, McConnell and McCarthy would win it hands down for this column. They are the Congressional leaders of a Republican Party that for four years has enthusiastically endorsed the flagrant racism and bigotry of Donald Trump, as demonstrated by his:

-Alleging that Mexican immigrants were mainly rapists and criminals
-Saying Hispanic migrants were “infesting” America
-Using the ethnic slur that an American judge with Mexican origins could not be trusted to make objective opinions
-Trying to ban all Muslims from entering the United States
-Kidnaping thousands of Hispanic migrant children and putting them in concentration camps, with no plans for reuniting them with their families
-Labeling a black female U.S. Representative as of “low intellect,” and calling a black female a dog and a U.S. Senator “Pocahontas”

That’s just a sample. The Trump/Republican racism reached a crescendo in the 2018 elections when he delivered a standard campaign speech full of race and hate-mongering. He talked about Hispanic migrants the way Hitler talked about the Jews. Trump’s entire agenda is to foster hate and division among Americans-the essence of racism.

McConnell, McCarthy, and virtually all Republicans have never wavered in their rabid support of Trump and his racist agenda. They enthusiastically support his re-election. That tells us all we need to know about the Republican Party.

Republicans to Georgia on Disaster Relief: “Drop Dead”

From U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson’s latest newsletter, May 3, 2019:
“On Tuesday, Senator Perdue and I held a bipartisan press conference with several of our colleagues from other affected states to continue our push for critical disaster relief funding. It has been more than six months since Georgia was devastated by Hurricane Michael in October 2018, and Congress has failed to provide assistance. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to take immediate action to provide this critical funding to our farmers. I’m going to continue fighting to see that we get it done. “

Comment: Imagine. We have a Republican President. A Republican United States Senate. Two Republican Senators. A Republican governor. A Republican-dominated Georgia Legislature.

Our Republican Senators have to go public with begging bowl in hand to try to convince the Republican-controlled U.S. Senate to pass disaster relief for Georgians, for a disaster that happened six months ago.

What piece of the puzzle are we missing here? For two years and 4 months, we have argued that the idea that Donald Trump and his Republican minions give a two-bit tinker’s damn about ordinary Georgians is a lie, a Big Lie of monstrous proportions. And yet, Trump’s Republican base continues to support him, despite the fact that they are working against their own self-interests.

Please, you Georgia Trumpists. What piece of the puzzle are we missing?

Reagan Daughter to Republicans: Stop Abusing My Father’s Name

IndieDems.com
Bulletin – May 3, 2019
“At this moment in America’s history when the democracy to which my father pledged himself and the Constitution that he swore to uphold, and did faithfully uphold, are being degraded and chipped away at by a sneering, irreverent man who traffics in bullying and dishonesty, you stay silent.”—Patti Davis

IndieDems to Senators Johnny Isakson and David Perdue, and Representative Barry Loudermilk: Reagan daughter Patti Davis obviously had you in mind when she wrote those heartfelt words. She joins the large and growing chorus of true American conservative voices who have done what any decent American should do and turn their backs on Donald Trump. Isakson, Perdue, and Loudermilk, meanwhile, remain steadfast members of the Trump lapdog club that wages a daily war on God’s 10 Commandments, Jesus’ Golden Rule, the Constitution, the rule of law, and common human decency.  

Can any Georgia Republican be so blind they truly do not see the sewer of a morally and intellectually corrupt Republican Party they are swimming in? Read Patti Davis’ words and see the light:  

Dear Republicans: Stop using my father, Ronald Reagan, to justify your silence on Trump
By Patti Davis

____________________________________________________/

READ MORE

As you read the following, remember that Isakson, Perdue, and Loudermilk have given their stamp of approval to every word and deed of Donald Trump.

President Trump has made more than 10,000 false or misleading claims

The Republican War on Democracy
If you can’t win playing by the rules, you change them.

How conservatives rationalize their surrender to Trump
James Comey is right: The president eats their souls.
By Max Boot, former Wall Street Journal editorial writer

In Barr, Trump has found someone who licks his boots out of principle
William Barr has diminished the independence of his office.
By Michael Gerson, former G.W. Bush speechwriter

(IndieDems note: Substitute the names Isakson, Perdue, or Loudermilk for Barr, and you nail GA Republicans)

No Impeachment for Now

I understand where the Democrats and commentators who say the Mueller findings require Trump’s immediate impeachment are coming from. But I remain on the “ no impeachment now” side, for this reason: let the House committees proceed with their hearings. In particular, let Mueller testify. I firmly believe that calm Congressional testimony and questions will harden the case against Trump. After the hearings, Democrats could put before the House a resolution condemning Trump’s acts with all the charges that would be brought in a formal impeachment proposal. More spotlight on the charlatan.

By the time all the above is done, the 2020 elections will be only months away. Deciding Trump’s fate at the polls is the best way to get rid of him while undermining Republicans’ ability to fuel a backlash with claims of a Democratic coup. Unbelievable as it may seem, impeachment would strengthen Trump’s electoral prospects.

William Barr: Another Morally Corrupt Republican…

…conservative Christian white male–and Trump lapdog to boot.

IndieDems at the beginning of the Trump presidency predicted that he would combine the worst of previous Republican administrations suffused with lies, criminality, and demagoguery–McCarthyism, Watergate, Irangate–and the resulting toxic brew would be the Republicans’ guiding light.  Our only regret: we underestimated how right we would be.

The pattern is not only the repetition of the same depraved acts, but in who is carrying them out.  It’s the same culprits over and over again: Republican conservative Christian white males.

In assessing Attorney General William Barr, remember this: the only two Attorney Generals in U.S history forced from office on charges of corruption and malfeasance were the twins of Barr in his status as a prominent, respected lawyer. AG Daugherty under President Harding and AG John Mitchell under Nixon entered office as honorable men. Both Republican conservative Christian white males—same background as Barr—were kicked out covered in slime as craven malefactors.

Daugherty was done in for his part in the Tea Pot Dome scandal. Mitchell went to jail after being convicted of crimes connected to the Watergate scandal. In fact, as I recall, virtually all the officials convicted as criminals for their roles in Tea Pot Dome and Watergate were Republican conservative Christian white males with impeccable credentials prior to assuming office. As were the only two National Security Advisors in U.S. history forced out of office for wrongful acts, and in the case of Michael Flynn, convicted of criminal acts.

In fact, all those Trump officials convicted in the fallout of the Mueller investigation are Republican conservative Christian white males. Is there a pattern here?

The Incredibly Shrinking Johnny Isakson

IndieDems has noted numerous times the fact that Senator Johnny Isakson has remained a faithful lap dog for Donald Trump throughout his presidency, giving the Senator’s stamp of approval to Trump’s litany of lies, racism, misogyny, and xenophobia. Only occasionally has Isakson risen to at least rap Trump’s knuckles, most notably when he rebuked Trump for bad-mouthing John McCain.

What makes Isakson’s toadying to Trump even more inexplicable is that he is virtually immune to the disease that afflicts other elected Republicans: he does not have to live in mortal fear that if he says something that arouses Trump’s ire, Trump will see to it that Isakson has opposition in the next Republican primary. Isakson was re-elected to a six-year term in 2016, and he has health issues that almost certainly will make this his last term in office.

Isakson by now is well situated to serve as a senior statesman in the Republican Party, able to speak freely in support of the basic values of America and traditional conservatism. Instead, Isakson has given unwavering support to a President who is waging a war against those values and against God’s 10 Commandments, Jesus’ Golden Rule, and common human decency.

And now comes the Mueller report—at least, the version as redacted by another Trump lap dog, Attorney General William Barr. The facts Mueller has collected in two years of extensive investigation reveal in bold detail the moral and intellectual bankruptcy of the Trump Administration and the Republican Party.

Rather than prove our point by repeating the extensive media reporting, we simply give you the words of the newly elected Republican Senator from Utah and former GOP presidential candidate, Mitt Romney:

“I am sickened at the extent and pervasiveness of dishonesty and misdirection by individuals in the highest office of the land, including the President. I am also appalled that, among other things, fellow citizens working in a campaign for president welcomed help from Russia—including information that had been illegally obtained; that none of them acted to inform American law enforcement; and that the campaign chairman was actively promoting Russian interests in Ukraine.”

“Reading the report is a sobering revelation of how far we have strayed from the aspirations and principles of the founders.”

And more from George Conway, a prominent conservative lawyer and husband of White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, who said he believes the evidence collected by Mueller is so “damning” for President Trump, he should be impeached immediately.

“What the Mueller report disturbingly shows, with crystal clarity, is that today there is a cancer in the presidency: President Donald J. Trump,” Conway wrote in a scathing op-ed published in the Washington Post on April 18. “Congress now bears the solemn constitutional duty to excise that cancer without delay.”

(Also check out IndieDems’ post The Moral Bankruptcy of Johnny Isakson’s Republican Party, written before the release of the Mueller report)

But—despite these condemnations of Trump from fellow Republicans, Johnny Isakson continues his lap dog support of Trump and remains silent about the Mueller report.

Isakson is a disgrace to his office and does a disservice to the people of Georgia equal to Donald Trump’s disservice to America.

Democratic Policies Have Always Reflected Christian Values

Media pundits are in full throttle trying to deal with the novel fact that some Democratic candidates are talking the language of faith in their messages. In IndieDems opinion, some are not getting it quite right. A prime example was a recent Washington Post column by Elizabeth Bruenig.  She included this statement:

“The crux of the (right-wing evangelical) alliance is opposition to abortion and liberal views on sexuality — but the religious left has no such unified identity, in part because it has no such unanimously agreed-on priorities.”

Here is IndieDems comment:

I take serious exception with Ms. Bruenig’s statement that the religious left has no unanimously agreed on priorities. The religious left, and the Democratic Party, agree unanimously on policies that are the most perfect expression of Jesus’ Golden Rule human beings have ever devised: Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and Obamacare.

Those bedrock examples of compassion and concern for your fellow man—regardless of race, religion, or ethnic origin—are the guiding lights of American progressives and liberals. Each of them was put in place in the face of bellicose Republican opposition. Today’s Republicans are more united than ever in wanting to destroy them. Their elimination is in Trump’s proposed fiscal year 2020 budget.

Republicans, in short, continue their decades-long assault on Jesus’ Golden Rule. They have simply added to that a war against God’s 10 Commandments, by supporting a President who lives every minute in wanton contempt of the Commandments against adultery and bearing false witness. After two years of flagrant corruption, you can add contempt for “thou shalt not steal.”

The Republicans who do all of this and proclaim themselves to be Christians are, in my opinion, committing outright blasphemy. They certainly display the hypocrisy Jesus condemned when he stated that it’s the ones who make the most of praying in public who are the biggest hypocrites:

“And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by men… But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” Matthew 6:5-6

Democrats Appealing to Religion: What’s Up for Christianity?

The media are paying increasing attention to the Democratic presidential candidates who are using the language of religion as a key part of their message. (See Pete Buttigieg shows how to campaign on values in the age of Trump).   The reports focus predominantly on South Bend mayor Pete Buttigieg, whose numbers are rising in the polls. In my opinion, some of the media are misrepresenting what Buttigieg is saying by presenting it mainly as a question of his fidelity to the Christian religion. But in reality, he has put it in the more general context of his faith and his interpretation of the true meaning of Christian doctrines. That is something that increasing numbers of Americans identify with.

The fact that more and more Americans do not claim membership in any Christian denomination does not at all mean they have abandoned their religious longings. It simply means they no longer believe that organized religion adequately reflects their religious longings—in fact, are antithetical to them. Christian churches help bring about their own demise by proclaiming that Christianity required being anti-abortion and/or anti-gay. Mankind took a mighty step away from that Dark Ages mentality when individuals said, if that’s the choice, to hell with your religion.

The same way previous generations rejected the idea that Christianity required the Inquisition, burning witches at the stake, supporting slavery, and supporting segregation. The Republicans—and especially evangelicals—who still live with that medieval mentality are reaping what they sowed. His Truth continues to march on, putting militant anti-abortion and anti-gay rights stands on the dust bin of history. And we can thank God for that.

Nielsen Firing Portends New Heights for Republican Misgovernance

The firing of Homeland Security Secretary, Kirstjen Nielsen, one of Trump’s most faithful lap dogs, because she could not implement his image of a perfect illegal immigration policy has dire implications for democracy and the rule of law in the United States, not only for their immediate consequences, but for what it will tell us about the bankruptcy of Republican governance.

What Nielsen’s firing shows is that there is no way to accomplish Trump’s goals according to the rule of law and democratic norms. His lies, demagoguery, inhumanity, and refusal to face reality have hit a brick wall. Nielsen’s departure, of course, changes nothing. But we know what it portends: Trump will simply double down on his lawlessness and demagoguery. Surely, there are more children and entire families he can place in wire cages in concentration camps —and he will find lackeys even more willing than Nielsen to follow his whims. Attorney General Barr, given his despicable precedence handling the Mueller report, will be the first to fall in line.

But the most chilling of the likely results: Congressional Republicans, led by the ilk of Mitch McConnell, Kevin McCarthy, and Lindsey Graham, will once more roll over and play dead as Trump roars ahead with his contempt for the rule of law, democracy, and common human decency toward the suffering of innocent human beings. Any semblance of hope that Republicans will finally rise in support of what we used to think of as America’s basic values will go by the boards. Only the Democratic House of Representatives may save us from total degradation. The rest of us can only pray for its success—and the results of the 2020 tions.