Politicians without backbone

What does the GOP need that it lacks? Politico figured it out. Here.

Its article begins by focusing on a single day of the 2016 campaign in South Carolina. That day was February 18, 2016. Trump wasn’t yet the GOP nominee. On a stage were Marco Rubio, Nikki Haley, Tim Scott, and Trey Gowdy. A Republican pollster told Politico,

“I remember watching the stage with Marco Rubio, Hispanic American conservative; Nikki Haley, Asian American conservative; Tim Scott, African American conservative; and Trey Gowdy, traditional, southern, white-guy conservative, and I took a picture of it, and I showed it to anybody who would listen and said, ‘This is the future of the Republican Party.’”

It wasn’t. Trump was. That moment, Politico says, instead was “the last gasp of … an unexplored portal to a different party — to a different country.”

More happened than just Republican voters following an angry old white man with less character than a saltwater crocodile. Rubio had called him “a con artist;” Scott, after Charlottesville, said Trump’s moral authority was “compromised;” Haley, after Jan. 6, didn’t see how he could run for office again. But facing the MAGA mob, they all cut and ran, cowards to the last person.

Fast-forwarding to present, Politico says “by now their collective capitulation is so considerable it’s hard to know whether they believed what they were saying then or believe what they are saying now or really whether they believe much of anything at all.”

That, fundamentally, is what’s wrong with the Republican Party’s politicians and candidates. No backbone. They’re so unwilling to call out right from wrong, you wonder if they know right from wrong. As Rubio said, “There’s this derangement that exists around Donald Trump.” He’s just wrong about who’s deranged.

Our country needs two healthy political parties, so they’ll keep each other honest. Healthy competition weeds out weak ideas and candidates. But it’s hard to look at today’s GOP and its politicians and see anything that’s healthy.

Perhaps the starkest evidence of the depth of the party’s moral rot is that all its promising future leaders turned into spineless sycophants. And the speed with which they did it.

Maybe they never really were the kind of leaders our country needs in the first place. People who lose their spine that quickly probably never had one to begin with.

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