‘Embarrassing,’ ‘stupid’: Republicans blast national party as if it bears no relation to them

Senate Republicans have finally located their problem, and it's the Republican National Committee. After the RNC last week endorsed the Jan. 6 insurrection as "legitimate political discourse," many congressional Republicans are pretending like the national Republican Party bears no relationship to them.

"I'm not a member of the RNC," Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas said Sunday when asked whether GOP Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois deserved to be censured by the RNC for participating in the Jan. 6 probe. Within the text of that censure resolution, the RNC endorsed the violent Jan. 6 assault that resulted in death and destruction as "legitimate political discourse."

"It could not have been a more inappropriate message," said Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah, the uncle of RNC chair Ronna McDaniel. Romney said he had texted with McDaniel after passage of the resolution and described her to CNN as a "wonderful person and doing her very best." But as for the resolution, Romney added, "Anything that my party does that comes across as being stupid is not going to help us."

Stupid is apt—but let's not limit the moniker to McDaniel and the national party alone. Republicans, eyeing an election cycle that should absolutely favor them based on historical trends, had the chance to bury Donald Trump last year during his second impeachment trial and leave much of his political baggage in the rearview mirror. Instead, they breathed new life into him, and now they're pretending like the RNC is solely responsible for his drag on the party.

The RNC censure resolution came at the end of a week that was kicked off by Trump dangling pardons for Jan. 6 convicts during a Texas rally the weekend before. Trump then called on Congress to investigate his former vice president, Mike Pence, for failing to unilaterally "overturn" a free and fair 2020 election.

But the RNC's endorsement of the Jan. 6 violence was just the latest in a years-long parade of Republican efforts to appease and coddle Trump. He has continually demanded absolute fealty from Republicans every step of the way, and they have acquiesced time and time again. With its censure resolution, the RNC was once again mollifying Trump by pursuing his political vendetta against Reps. Cheney and Kinzinger, both of whom voted to impeach him for inciting the Jan. 6 attack.

Rep. Tom Rice of South Carolina, also one of the 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach Trump, told CNN the House GOP caucus avoided the topic of the censure altogether in its conference meeting Tuesday, suggesting the whole episode was just too cringey to touch.

“It was pretty damn embarrassing,” Rice said.

But Senate Republicans are especially prickly on the matter, particularly those who had a chance to impeach Trump for inciting the attack on the U.S. government and explicitly declined to take it.

"It's just not a constructive move, when you're trying to win elections and take on Democrats, to take on Republicans," said Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, as if no one could have imagined Trump would inspire internecine mayhem when he voted to let him off the hook for Jan. 6.

Asked if McDaniel should step aside, Thune pretended the RNC had nothing whatsoever to do with congressional Republicans. "Oh, I don't know. Ultimately, it will be up to the RNC," he said of McDaniel's fate.

Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina rolled out the same talking point Senate Republicans have been parroting every time Trump pulls them into some new controversy—2022 is all about the future for Republicans, folks.

"I think all of us up here want to talk about forward and not backward," Graham said. "We want to talk about why we should be in charge of the House and the Senate, and when you're not talking about that, that takes you in the wrong direction."

And by talking about why Republicans should be in charge, Graham means deliberately not releasing a 2022 agenda so voters will have exactly no idea what Republicans plan to do if they retake control of the upper chamber.

The frustration among most Republicans was palpable.

"I think the RNC should be focused on electing Republicans," said Sen. Roy Blunt of Missouri.

Even House Republicans, led by Trump hack Kevin McCarthy, sought to distance themselves from the RNC's unforced error.

Asked about the RNC resolution, House Minority Whip Steve Scalise told CNN, "My focus has been on what we need to do to take back the House."

The House GOP campaign chief, Rep. Tom Emmer of Minnesota, added, "We're focused on winning the majority next fall."

It wasn't exactly a full-throated stand for American democracy, but hey, Republicans want control of Congress so they can end this scurrilous investigation into the worst homegrown attack on the Capitol in U.S. history.

"We ought to capture the Jan. 6 committee and convert it to our purposes: pursuing the extent to which federal involvement might have animated violence," Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, floating a totally unsubstantiated right-wing conspiracy theory.

To be fair, some Republicans did join the RNC in defending the insurrectionists.

"There's no doubt that there were tens of thousands of people engaged in peaceful free speech that the press and Democrats try to demonize falsely," said Sen. Ted Cruz, who voted against certification.

Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri, who also voted to throw the election, called the Jan. 6 panel "illegitimate," presumably while pumping his fist.

"They're not following their own rules. And I think, frankly, it's, it harkens back to the House Committee on un-American affairs," said Hawley, engaging the "un-American" topic on which Republicans have become bonafide experts.

Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, firmly ensconced in his disreality bubble, couldn't dig out of his conspiracy rabbit hole long enough to take note of the RNC aligning itself with Jan. 6 terrorists.

"I did not pay any attention to that," said Johnson, who's up for reelection this year.

But Johnson was upstaged by House GOP Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who coughed up an entirely fictional explanation of the RNC's resolution.

“What they were talking about is the six RNC members who Jan 6th has subpoenaed, who weren't even here, who were in Florida that day," McCarthy said—something that was never even mentioned in the censure resolution.

Asked McCarthy about “legitimate political discourse.” “What they were talking about is the six RNC members who Jan 6th has subpoenaed, who weren't even here, who were in Florida that day." He says those who caused damage “should be in jail.” (RNC resolution doesn’t mention that) pic.twitter.com/k4qsLWAOv5

— Manu Raju (@mkraju) February 8, 2022

Fascism: House Republican extremists look to support candidates as devoted to Trump as they are

There's a lot to take in on this Washington Post story about House Republican extremists recruiting like-minded conspiracy freaks in order to move their party even farther to the right than it has already gone. On the surface, there's nothing too surprising here: House conspiracy theorists like Marjorie Taylor Greene and Madison Cawthorn are helping to boost the would-be careers of other conspiracy cranks in Republican primaries, so as to shove out more moderate Republicans who have beliefs like "presidents should not be allowed to commit crimes" or "overthrowing democracy rather than recognizing a valid election loss might, in the long term, not work out so well."

And the plan, to the extent that anything rattling around in Greene or Cawthorn's head could be called one, is also a tried-and-true one. The "MAGA" clown brigade wants to target insufficiently fascist-minded Republicans in hard-right districts, instead propping up like-minded conspiracy promoters and avid Dear Leader loyalists in places that will always vote Republican no matter who is thrown in front of voters. Greene is herself an example of that; there is absolutely nothing about her that would suggest she ought to be put in any position of power, her QAnon beliefs have been on the extreme end of batshit even compared to the normal batshittery promoted by Trump's own professional conspiracy inventors like Steve Bannon or Rudy Giuliani, her anti-democracy, pro-violence statements should have already gotten her driven out of Congress on grounds of bare decorum, and she is absolutely assured to keep her seat because Republican voters like angry, uninformed, and possibly violent conspiracy cranks.

The risk of such plans is that you can end up promoting cranks so dodgy that they end up doing something that even hard-hard-right voters can't quite stomach, resulting in a steep decline in Republican votes on election day as those voters stay home. Similarly, if your entire operation depends on promoting extremists with extremist views, the odds are high that a few of those newly chosen Republican candidates will end up having, ahem, past "hobbies" that get exposed to voters before election day and which may or may not constitute crimes.

The Republican MAGA brigade has been doing exactly zero vetting, basing support solely on candidate willingness to impeach Joe Biden, overturn the presidential election results, and/or appoint Donald Trump the God-King of the House. In fact, let's just pause right there, for a moment, to contemplate the thought of Marjorie Taylor Greene or Madison Fake Russian Wife Cawthorn and their combined staff attempting to "vet" would-be crackpot allies so as to weed out any that were too sketchy.

Yeah. Yeah, I'm sure it's a top-notch operation. And I'm sure it got even better when the staff sprung for a second Ouija board to go along with the first.

So that's the story. But there's a whole lot of other sketch in the Post's story even taking all that into account, and it's ... concerning? Off-putting? Odd? It's hard to pin down.

For example: "Trump critics warn that a stronger MAGA wing in Congress threatens democracy," says the Post. Really? Really, it's "Trump critics" who are saying that elevating candidates who publicly express demands that elections be overturned based on known-fraudulent propaganda poses a threat to democracy? As opposed to, say, Every Expert Ever? When a political party is making a pledge to overturn elections a core measure of candidate loyalty, do we really need to cite "critics" to assert that elections might be in danger? Huh.

Or this: "Candidates seeking [Trump's] approval meet with him at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Fla., where he peppers them with questions that test their MAGA bona fides," says the Post.

Okay, but we know what that looks like. We don't need to guess; we saw it in every Cabinet meeting and on every campaign trail. Candidates meet Trump's "approval" by kissing his ass wholeheartedly and more imaginatively than the last guy to come along, and they lose his "approval" if they say even the slightest thing critical of him, personally. He doesn't give a rat's ass about any other policy or issue. It's just the ass-kissing. Painting those sessions as Trump "peppering" anyone with "tests" of their MAGA loyalty is very odd phrasing.

MAGA is, without question, devotion to Trump. Nothing else applies. There's no other "test." The party is divided into those willing even to end democratic government on Trump's behalf and those that might have second thoughts while doing it. The Post story makes that clear, not needing to cite any experts for their assertion that MAGA looks to "purge the GOP of those not deemed loyal to the former president and his false claims that the 2020 election was rigged."

Greene-supported candidate Rick Slabjaw—sorry, a generic conspiracy crank of certain complexion who goes by the name of "Joe Kent"—"wants to force Republicans into tough votes, starting with articles of impeachment against President Biden and a full congressional inquiry into the 2020 presidential election, which he says was stolen from Trump," reports the Post. And, glory be, the other competitors are also ex-military or ex-athlete types, "telegenic and mostly White male millennials," as the Greene-Cawthorn-Boebert-Jordan-Gaetz wing of the party pin their hopes on thickheaded Aryan faces with telegenic paranoias.

It's the subtext of the story that makes it so off-putting. This is a very, very gentle way for the Post to be alerting the public of plans to further purge Republicanism of anyone unwilling to topple democracy on a bumbling, lying narcissist's behalf. We are talking about the most openly fascist wing of the party, a group obsessed with retaliating against anyone who does not promote known-false hoaxes meant to undermine public faith in our elections. We're talking about the wing of the party unwilling to condemn politically motivated violence, a wing that is continuously flirting with the edges of endorsing such acts themselves.

Here's one of the "MAGA" Republicans currently aiming for Congress: Noah Malgeri.

Republican US House candidate Noah Malgeri called for General Mark Milley to be executed live on C-SPAN. pic.twitter.com/DcdoG00aQx

— PatriotTakes 🇺🇸 (@patriottakes) December 27, 2021

Malgeri has the support of the white nationalism-allied fascist group "Republicans for National Renewal," and the endorsement of neo-Nazi dabbling Rep. Paul Gosar, and has been palling around in Lauren Boebert circles. He's a conspiracy-adjacent, fascism-promoting self-described "nationalist." There's not anything subtle about it.

Can you even talk about House Republican efforts to further radicalize their own party without that subtext? The "candidates" we're talking about are ones who so ally themselves with (1) Trump and (2) nationalist "renewal" that they are publicly demanding we throw away whatever parts of democracy conflict with it.

Five years from now, could this whole article be rewritten under the title How Fascism Happened? Because a group of House Republicans who are fervent conspiracy mongers, who continually tease at the edges of promoting violence, who vow to remove the current president and rewrite history to proclaim that Actually, Dear Leader was victorious all along—that feels like a lot to take in, and considerably more dire than "House MAGA squad seeks to expand" lets on.

We're in the odd place where anyone who knows anything about history or government is shouting at us that this, exactly this, is how democracies fall, but the papers are still trying very, very hard to write the story within the bounds of a normal political tiff. "Trump critics" worry that a party's devotion to malevolent propaganda, a rejection of facts, an insistence on anti-intellectualism that paints even dying in a pandemic as preferable to going along with scheming scientists, and a singleminded devotion to a showboating lifelong buffoon are all core fascist tenets that Republicanism has rewritten itself to accommodate.

Maybe that's because anyone unwilling to accept the new premise that a narcissist who has blamed "fraud" or "cheating" for every loss in his sorry-ass life was "cheated" out of reelection has been declared a "Trump critic."

Republican extremists have been very successful in defining that boundary and getting political reporters to adhere to it. If you are willing to denounce objective facts and declare that reality is now whatever Donald Trump last said it was, you are "MAGA." Everyone else, every other person in America regardless of party, partisanship, or profession, is now only a Trump critic.

House Republicans became the Party of Q this week. Democrats won’t let voters forget it in 2022

The word "nightmare" is trending in Republican circles lately. Thursday Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina characterized the idea of Donald Trump testifying at his impeachment trial as "a nightmare for the country." Or as a Politico headline put it, "Trump's allies fear the impeachment trial could be a PR nightmare"—which is what Graham really meant.  

Democrats agree, and the House Democratic campaign arm is moving quickly to bring that nightmare home to the House GOP, which officially declared itself the QAnon caucus this week when 199 of its 211 members voted against stripping its chief Q adherent, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, of her committee assignments. 

In its opening salvo in the 2022 battle for control of the House, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee released a campaign ad indicting House Republicans for standing "with Q not you." The ad places the conspiracy cult at the center of the deadly Jan. 6 riot, saying that QAnon "with Donald Trump, incited a mob that attacked the Capitol and murdered a cop."

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi previewed the strategy this week when she referred to GOP Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy as "Qevin McCarthy, Q-CA" in a tweet. McCarthy helpfully lived up to the moniker by refusing to remove Greene from her committee assignments and forcing his caucus to go on record in support of someone who not only espouses QAnon, but has also endorsed the execution of Pelosi and other Democrats and has verbally assaulted survivors of the 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. And frankly, that's just a small taste of Greene's abhorrent quackery.

House Democrats are betting that won't play well in the very districts that will likely decide control of the House for the second half of President Joe Biden's term.

"If Kevin McCarthy wants to take his party to ‘crazy town’ and follow these dangerous ideas, he shouldn't expect to do well in the next election,” Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney of New York, the new chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, told Politico. "They can do QAnon, or they can do college-educated voters. They cannot do both."

According to Politico, the DCCC's $500,000 TV and digital ad campaign will run in the districts of seven vulnerable Republicans: Reps. Mike Garcia, Young Kim and Michelle Steel of California; Maria Elvira Salazar of Florida; Don Bacon of Nebraska; Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania; and Beth Van Duyne of Texas.

Democrats' early decision to nationalize the race is a notable departure from their strategy in 2018, when they deployed a hyper-localized message around health care that ultimately netted them an historic 41 seats. Of course, the backdrop to that strategy was the GOP's repeated efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which would have stripped millions of Americans of their coverage.

The backdrop to this decision were the horrific events of Jan. 6, an insurrection at the Capitol that Americans couldn’t have even imagined before they watched in horror as it played out in real time on screens across the country. A Yahoo News/YouGuv survey released this week found that 81% of Americans said the attack wasn't justified. And more than 9 in 10 Americans expressed revulsion about the attack, saying it made them feel “angry,” “ashamed” or “fearful.” 

Democrats will now have several weeks worth of a Senate trial to remind people of that revulsion and how the GOP underwrote that deadly attack before, during, and after it took place through its unyielding support of Trump's lies and its embrace of extremist groups like QAnon.

Democrats’ bet is that after they deliver results on COVID-19 relief, they will be able to head into 2022 saying that Democrats stood with the American people while Republicans stood with QAnon.

QAnon extremist Marjorie Taylor Greene moves up as Trump’s House allies fixate on ousting Liz Cheney

The news isn't good for Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, who dared admit the truth that Donald Trump's insurrection at the Capitol was the greatest "betrayal" by any commander in chief in American history.

On Thursday, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy traveled to Mar-a-Lago to suck up to the guy who tried to have him and his fellow lawmakers killed. “United and ready to win in ’22,” McCarthy tweeted following his meeting with Trump, referring to the GOP effort to reclaim the House majority.

As McCarthy chummed it up with Trump in Florida, pet Trump seditionist and Sunshine State representative Matt Gaetz jetted off to Cheney's home state to rail against her reelection. "Defeat Liz Cheney in this upcoming election, and Wyoming will bring Washington to its knees," Gaetz told hundreds of mostly maskless attendees. 

Gaetz topped off his Cheney hate tour Thursday night with a hit on Fox News in which he urged McCarthy to put Cheney's leadership post within the GOP caucus up for a vote.

“Kevin McCarthy needs to hold a vote on Liz Cheney,” Gaetz told Fox host Tucker Carlson. “And if he doesn’t, the Republican Conference is a total joke. More than half of the Republican conference has said that this person does not speak for us.”

But while McCarthy and Gaetz line up to do Trump's revenge bidding, House Republicans have been burying their heads in the sand about their very own pro-assassination QAnoner and 'space laser' enthusiast Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia.

Greene has been trying to systematically erase her dark trail of social media posts in which, for instance, she promoted executing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and called Parkland school shooting survivor and gun control activist David Hogg a "coward," suggesting he was being "paid to do this." Greene is also a Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting denier, claiming the horrific mass shooting that took the lives of 27 victims—including 20 children—was staged.

Hogg had urged McCarthy over Twitter to deny Greene any committee placements given her reprehensible behavior, not to mention her unfitness for office. In a separate post, he also explained the horror of a group of teenaged shooting survivors being harassed by a 44-year-old woman. 

”In that video you see a group of people most of whom are 18 or 19 acting calm cool and collected,” he wrote, “what you don't see are the sleepless nights, the flashbacks, the hyper vigilance and deep pitch black numbness so many of us feel living in a society [where] we are told our friends dying doesn’t matter.”

House Republicans' abhorrent response was to assign Greene to the House Education and Labor Committee—a move Pelosi called "appalling."

"What could they be thinking?" Pelosi asked on Wednesday. "Or is thinking too generous a word for what they might be doing? It's absolutely appalling, and I think the focus has to be on the Republican leadership of this House of Representatives for the disregard they have for the death of those children."

Mark Barden and Nicole Hockley, who lost their children Daniel Barden and Dylan Hockley respectively in the Sandy Hook shooting, called Greene's placement on the committee "an attack on any and every family whose loved ones were murdered in mass shootings that have now become fodder for hoaxers."

Any party that hadn't been infiltrated by homegrown domestic terrorists might be turning its attention to expelling Greene from their midst rather than giving her a bigger platform. Instead, House Republicans are fixated on a debate around demoting Cheney for telling the truth and ousting her from Congress altogether.

It’s not good news for Cheney—but it’s even worse news for America. 

Republicans in disarray as GOP leadership fractures over Trump’s impeachment, removal

From the GOP rank and file to those in leadership roles, Republican lawmakers are placing their bets—about their own political futures, the future of the party, and even how history will reflect on this fraught moment for the country.

And while Democrats' resolve to hold Donald Trump to account for inciting violence has proven uniquely unifying for most of the country, the Republican party is dividing amongst itself between those who think Trump is culpable and even impeachable and those who have hitched their raft irrevocably to Trumptanic. And make no mistake, Trump's support is tanking, even among Republican voters. A Morning Consult poll of GOP voters released Wednesday found that just 42% of them said they would vote for Trump in a 2024 presidential primary. Given what Trump has done, that level of support still seems high, but it's slipped 12 points from a Nov. 21-23 survey when the outlet posed the same question. And it's a far cry from the high-80s/low-90s support Trump has enjoyed among Republican voters throughout his term.

Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the House GOP's No. 3, became the highest ranking Republican Tuesday to firmly plant her flag on the side of impeaching Trump, saying, "There has never been a greater betrayal by a President of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution."

Last Wednesday, Cheney was attempting to convince her GOP colleagues to vote for certification when she received a phone call from her father informing her that Trump had attacked her in his rally speech. In her statement Tuesday declaring she would vote to impeach Trump, she wrote, “The president could have immediately and forcefully intervened to stop the violence. He did not.”

Cheney's declaration marked a sharp break with her fellow GOP leaders, Reps. Kevin McCarthy of California and Steve Scalise of Louisiana, both of whom echoed Trump's post-election fraud claims and then voted to reject the election results even after his cultists stormed the Capitol. 

Meanwhile in the upper chamber, soon-to-be Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, signaled his much squishier lean toward potentially convicting Trump through anonymous sources to several different outlets.

Among rank and file GOP members, a smaller anti-Trump cadre has emerged with some members faulting Trump and his GOP enablers for the siege and others even stepping up to back impeachment

“To allow the President of the United States to incite this attack without consequence is a direct threat to the future of our democracy. For that reason, I cannot sit by without taking action,” New York Rep. John Katko, the ranking Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee and a former federal prosecutor, wrote in a statement. 

The reality is, many of these GOP members stepping forward also fear for their lives now that Trump has turned the party into a raging mob. CNN is reporting that many of Republican lawmakers are getting direct pressure from Trump not to defect on the impeachment vote, which isn't exactly surprising but certainly underscores the urgency of his removal from office. McCarthy has reportedly urged his pro-Trump members not to verbally attack pro-impeachment Republicans because their lives could be on the line.

But at the end of the day, impeachment is happening, with or without House Republicans. And momentum is clearly on the side of Democrats' strong stand against Trump as corporate titans, big tech, public opinion, military leadership, and other entities join the push to draw a line in the sand. 

The McCarthy's of the world have bet wrong. There's simply no way he can erase his fealty to Trump, and he also doesn't have the spine to disavow Trump. And as hard as it is to imagine a Trump loyalist losing his leadership role in the party, it's equally as hard to imagine having a GOP leader who can't fundraise because he's been shunned by corporate donors and polite society alike as a seditionist. That is simply an impossible position for a GOP congressional leader.  

And if there's one way to judge exactly how incomprehensible that posture is, it's by looking at the Republican leader of the Senate caucus. McConnell's lower-profile openness to potentially convicting Trump is both a seismic shift and a window into his vision for safeguarding the future existence of the party. And if McConnell ultimately supports conviction of Trump, some GOP sources are openly wondering if the 67 votes to convict might actually materialize. 

"If Mitch is a yes, he's done," said one Senate GOP source who asked not to be named, according to CNN.

Meanwhile, McCarthy has been running around pushing to censure Trump in an effort to ostensibly hold Trump accountable without actually holding him accountable. Safe to say McCarthy's political fortunes aren't particularly bright at this moment. Perhaps he can form a support group with Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Josh Hawley of Missouri. 

Republicans helped Trump inspire a violent insurrection. They have done nothing to disavow it

In the wake of a deadly attack many of them helped incite, Republicans are only continuing their descent into ignominy. The only way out is for them to take responsibility for their actions and actually admit that they helped their mentally unhinged leader—Donald Trump—sic a mob of his foaming-at-the-mouth cultists on U.S. lawmakers at the Capitol last week. 

Instead, they have dug in their heels and unleashed a Gatling gun round of finger-pointing at Democrats, who are moving swiftly to hold Trump to account through impeachment charges. Democrats, they claim, are being divisive by trying to protect the country from further abuses by a madman.

The Washington Post writes:

Shortly before convening a conference call of House Republicans on Monday, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) sent a missive asserting that “an impeachment at this time would have the opposite effect of bringing our country together when we need to get America back on a path towards unity and civility.” ...

“After the abhorrent violence we saw last week, our country desperately needs to heal and unify,” RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said. “I have concerns that impeachment proceedings will only divide us further.”

McCarthy's empty rhetoric about "unity and civility" is particularly precious given his role in perpetrating Trump’s lie that the election was stolen. Not only did he sign on to the GOP legal challenge to the election results and vote to oppose congressional certification after the siege, he also used his platform to push Trump's baseless claims into the ecosphere.

.@GOPLeader Kevin McCarthy was laying the groundwork for the attack on the Capitol for months. 11/5/2020: “President Trump won this election, so everyone who’s listening, do not be quiet. We cannot allow this to happen before our very eyes... join together and let’s stop this.” pic.twitter.com/9Ys6elhUln

— Jesse Lee (@JesseCharlesLee) January 12, 2021

Immediately following the election, McCarthy started pumping Trump's crap to the GOP base. “President Trump won this election, so everyone who’s listening, do not be quiet," McCarthy told Fox News viewers on Nov. 5. "We cannot allow this to happen before our very eyes ... join together and let’s stop this.”

Other GOP lawmakers also bear unique responsibility for helping to foment the deadly violence:

  • Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama speaking at the MAGA rally last week: “Today is the day American patriots start taking down names and kicking ass. ... Are you willing to do what it takes to fight for America?"
  • First-term Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia and Lauren Boebert of Colorado called the day Republicans’ “1776 moment.”
  • Rep. Paul Gosar of Arizona repeatedly called Joe Biden an "illegitimate usurper" while promoting numerous "Stop the Steal" events. “Be ready to defend the Constitution and the White House,” Gosar counseled in an op-ed titled “Are We Witnessing a Coup d’État?” 

There's much much more, and The New York Times has a nice roundup of it

But the GOP, and particularly its leadership, is continuing to prove that there's no end to how morally bankrupt the party is—not even after they helped inspire a violent coup attempt that cost lives. Just like with Trump, there’s no bottom.