The GOP is hedging its bets

Dear President Trump,

How is it trying to breathe with a bunch of GOP senators sitting on you, taking turns clamping their hands over your mouth? Are they being careful not to “accidentally” cover your mouth and nose at the same time? They certainly have had to work extra hard to keep you from lurching over various ledges of your own making including, but not limited to 1) threats to do away with the ACA entirely in favor of some grand, as yet completely unformulated Republican dream healthcare machine, and 2) closing the entire Southern border, any and all consequences be damned.

And what a terrific storyline the GOP is developing right now. It’s actually not unlike the one presented by the still (amazingly) anonymous administration official in that Op Ed a ways back about how so many in your administration are suffering terrible slings and arrows to curb your worst instincts and protect the rest of us. Basically, it’s a handy dandy all-purpose stance that can be recast whichever way the political winds might blow. If you’re in ascendance the GOP people who were whispering in your ear that your 4am policy Tweets were off the rails could claim they totally support you and were talking through the fascinating details of your brilliant ideas. If you are on a downslide they can shift the verbiage and claim they were all that was between us and the jagged rocks at the bottom of the cliff you were about to send us over. Nifty huh? Not.

Threaded into the reporting were three other steadier, truer motives for the GOP to intervene on your desperate rage-driven stabs at policy. First, because the things you were proposing would unify Democrats and further divide Republicans, they had to get you to drop them so they could get back to exploiting policy differences among Democrats. Second, it was clear that what you were proposing would be so detrimental to your own constituents that they had to find ways to get you to back down. Third pursuing your whacked pipe dreams would siphon off precious time and energy from the real work of stacking the judiciary and installing party minions in key agency positions. Essentially, they had to check you because you threatened their reasons for living – gutting the safety nets and accountability functions of the government and so biasing the judiciary that those of us who were getting used to breathing whenever and wherever we wanted, once again need to pry away the hands clamped over our mouths, noses, and uteruses.

May we be safe from sleazy politicians.
May we be willing to call those sleazy politicians out for as long as it takes to get them out.
May we get sane and insist on aboveboard, healthy governance.
May you not Tweet us into war.

Sincerely,
Tracy Simpson

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