Saturday, November 09, 2019

Biden's Dream Of Normalcy

When at  19:45 of the video below, Bill Maher characterizes the Democratic presidential nomination as a choice between "fundamental change" and "return to normalcy." Montana's Steve Bullock replies "this is a single issue election and that issue is beating Donald Trump."

Bullock has a blood brother in Delaware/Pennsylvania's Joseph Robinette Biden, who is either the most naive or the most dishonest (exception for the latter being anyone named "Trump") individual east of the Mississippi:

Bullock has an excuse because he's new to national politics. However, the guy whose hero nominated Merrick Garland, denied a hearing by Mitch McConnell for the United States Supreme Court, does not. Matt Yglesias evidently recognizes that and recently explained

Biden hasn’t served in the Senate since 2008, but nearly 20 Republicans — including key figures like Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, moderates Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski, and dealmakers Lindsey Graham and Lamar Alexander — served alongside him. What’s more, precisely because of this history, Biden often served as an emissary from the Obama White House to Senate Republicans when the exigencies of governance required one.

If Senate Republicans sat down one day and decided that what they wanted to do was have a good-faith negotiation about how to strike some win-win deals that advance the main policy priorities of both sides, Biden would be a good person for them to sit down with.

But in terms of how likely that is, all Biden needs to do is look around at the current impeachment controversy. Senate Republicans know that Trump was trying to frame Biden. Heck, several Republican senators specifically and publicly urged the exact course of action on Ukraine that Biden took.

And on the Ukraine issue there is no ideological division between Biden and mainstream Republicans — they all share the US national security establishment’s hostility to Russia and support for the idea that the US should back efforts to pull Ukraine out of the Russian sphere of influence. It’s Trump who is the ideological outlier here, as well as the guy trying to smear one of their friends and former colleagues.

Yet nobody in the GOP is standing up for Biden or seeking to clear his good name. And the reasons aren’t mysterious: It’s politics. And in 2021, it will be politics, rather than epiphanies, that carry the day.

Whether through naivete or shared ideological perspective, Vice-President Biden revealed that he's willing to give Republicans a loaf of bread as long as they will leave him a slice. In that long line of evidence demonstrating that removing Donald Trump will not remove the GOP's fever (and bring about an epiphany), Judge Garland stands as only one, albeit the most obvious, example. 

We now have a Republican, considered by an adoring media to be one of the most reasonable and moderate Republicans who have served in the Trump Administration, keeping a straight face while remarking "On what? You're going to impeach a president for asking for a favor that didn’t happen and – and giving money and it wasn’t withheld?" I don't know what you would impeach him on."

Think harder, Nikki-  maybe extortion, attempted bribery, restructuring the presidency for personal financial enrichment, and abuse of office, nothing serious.

In 2008, Barack Obama could be excused when "with profound humility" he argued that his election would in the future be seen as 'the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal." But this is eleven years later and, unamused by Biden's statement and perspective, Charlie Pierce (two days before CBS' excerpt of the Haley interview) wrote

Mark his words. Then ask Merrick Garland to mark them.

God love him, Joe Biden is going to ride this dinosaur until it drops dead underneath him. Which of "his" Republican colleagues is going to have this "epiphany"? Mitch McConnell? Tom Cotton, who, on Wednesday, started pitching for the next Mexican War? And what will this "epiphany" entail? A move away from radical deregulation and fringe Protestantism? Abandoning, at last, supply-side economics? My guess is that, if and when this administration* ends badly, the Republican Party will find itself compressed into a diamond of pure Id—angry, vengeful, and out for blood. The epiphany is likely to be a fiery reaction against anyone associated with anything these fevered minds believe is "liberal." I could be wrong. The sky could rain gumdrops.

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