I have the greatest name in the world, George. Because when you spell it, it never ends. Look, Geor-ge-or-ge-or-ge . George Carlin
Look, do me a favor. Actually read the article before you start coming up with smart shit to say to me in the comments, alright? Jeez.
When it comes to employment in this country, one of the best jobs, job security wise is that of a sitting US Congressman, followed closely by being a sitting US Senator. Granted, it’s a bitch getting elected, you have to convince a whole bunch of people you’ve never met, and couldn’t care less about that you, and only you, are the one they should choose to send all the way across country to make up rules they’ll have to follow. But once you’re in, you’re golden.
Study after study shows that the retention rate for congressional incumbents is something like 94.7%, with Senate retention not far behind. As long as you don’t get caught on cell phone video chasing a sheep in fishnet stockings and garter belts across the national mall, or tossing campaign volunteers into the tidal basin, you’re pretty much set for life.
I know, I know, what does that have to do with a virus literally killing a political party? Just hang with me on this. Because that’s politics. And the coronavirus isn’t. And whether you’re a Democrat or a Republican, red or blue, large state or small, rural or urban, when you stand there with your hand on that bible, and you take your oath, you stop being a politician, and instead you become a part of a government. And that’s something totally different.
A political organization exists for the sole purpose of expanding and promoting the ideological goals of the party. That’s true for any political party. But a government, at least in theory exists for one reason and one reason only. To serve and protect the interests and safety of it’s constituents. You can have all the ideology you want, but turning it into applicable law and regulations requires governing.
From day one, the Democratic party has taken a constituent based approach to the pandemic. They have proposed spending hundreds of billions, if not trillions of dollars on expanded testing, medical equipment, expanded protective gear. They have promoted stay-at-home orders, mandatory universal wearing of masks, and strict social distancing. And they have championed a slow, steady, science driven and fact based strategy for reopening once the virus is under control. That’s politics.
Since day one, Donald Trump, the clueless wonder has gotten it wrong. What the Democrats instinctively understood was that this is a national health crisis, which brought on en economic collapse. Because Trump has tied his entire reelection hopes on the booming economy, he has spent every waking moment treating this as an economic crisis, brought on by a stupid virus. And since Trump is driven solely by the economic crisis, his sole approach has been to reopen the economy as quickly as possible, the consequences be damned, and he’ll dick with the virus later. That’s also politics.
But here’s where governance comes in. For a long time, the traditionally red states, mostly heartland and southern states were free to pretty much write off the effects of the coronavirus. The virus started off largely as a bi-coastal pandemic, east and west coasts, and as horrigic as the numbers were, they weren’t really being felt in the red states between. Which led to a feeling, both civil and governmental of complacence.
But now, due to the complacency of the red state governors, along with a pathetic ideology towards the virus, as the infection rates in the coastal areas start to decline, and the virus is better managed, it is the heartland and southern states that are beginning to feel the full brunt of the citys. And as my favorite Sesame Street meme says, Shit just got real!
Yesterday I wrote an article about a possible upcoming feud after the 4th of July between states that took their time reopening, and are progressing nicely, and those that threw caution to the winds for short term political and economic gain. But forget about the possible border wars aspect of it, because something much more important is playing out nationally in that concept. And that’s the part that just could kill the GOP as a national party.
Because the coronavirus is still the overwhelming national focus, the clear and diametrically opposite approaches on how and when to reopen the country is playing out in the nationally televised spotlight, and with only partial reopening, and 38 million unemployed, it’s getting universally seen.
Let’s just say that my hypothesis from yesterday holds true, as I fear it will. By the third week in June, the states, mostly blue, that slow walked their reopenings, and took corrective measures when necessary if spikes occurred, will still be seeing declining vases, and a greater control over the virus. That would be states like California, Oregon, Nevada, Washington, Illinois, New York, New Jersey, and yes, even red Ohio. And they are going to be taking protective measures to ensure that it stays that way.
On the other hand, those red states like Georgia, Texas, Alabama, Mississippi,Florida, Iowa, Oklahoma and Nebraska are all going to be in the hurt locker. Their cases and death tolls are going to be rising exponentially and unchecked. And because their ideologically driven governors and state legislatures too no action to stem the virus, nor to prepare for it to explode when they had the chance, they will be almost incapable of even beginning to control it until it literally starts to burn itself out.
Now, put yourself in the place of a resident of one of those states. If you’ve lost a mother or father, a grandparent or aunt or uncle, or God forbid, a child, who do you blame? Certainly not Donald Trump, he’s just some big mouth asshole in Washington DC. You blame your governor and state legislature. Who else? I mean, after all, just look one or two states to the left or right. Their governors put the hammer down right off of the bat, and yeah, it had to suck, but their death toll is low, and their kids are getting ready to go back to school in the fall. And you are especially going to blame your governor if you live in a city where the Mayor and the city council tried to enact common sense public safety measures, only to be steamrolled by the governor.
This is not pure theory, there is recent, non coronavirus history to back this assertion up. Several years ago, the great state of Kansas elected a total GPO froot loop as governor who tried to turn Kansas into an economic paradise by dropping the state’s corporate tax rate to 0. And within a few years, the handful of state and county employees, cops and firefighters, and teachers who weren’t on unemployment, were getting 4 hours of sleep a night, having to spend their off hours driving for Uber to keep body and soul together. Today, Kansas has a Democratic Governor. And a Native American, lesbian, former MMA boxer, Ivy League school lawyer in congress too. You go, Kansas!
And that’s how a virus can kill a national political party. You can have any and all of the political views you want, but when the shit hits the fan, ultimately you are going to be judged by how you governed. And if any, and I mean any of those states flip blue in November, then the GOP’s stranglehold on them is broken. Never again will they be a gimme state on the map. Especially if the Democrats clean house in Washington in November, and the federal government actually begins functioning for the people again. As my dear friend and colleague Ursula Faw loves to say, A rising tide lifts all boats.
To know the future, look to the past.before the insanity of the 2020 election, relive the insanity of the 2016 GOP primary campaign, and the general election, to see how we got to where we are. Copies of President Evil, and the sequel, President Evil II, A Clodwork Orange are available as e-books on Amazon, at the links above. Catch up before the upcoming release of the third book in the trilogy, President Evil III: All The Presidents Fen
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