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Senator Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) may have learned a painful lesson about straddling the political fence. After he strongly rebuked President Trump, accusing him of inciting the January 6 riot, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), in turn, rebuked McConnell, accusing him of dereliction of duty, for not casting a (non-decisive) vote to convict Trump on impeachment. McConnell should know that trying to please both sides does not work — it only makes enemies of both.
In politics, there is a legitimate role for compromise, but only if both sides engage in good faith. The Democrats have discovered, much to their delight, that they need not compromise. The Republicans will agreeably yield to Democrat demands.
The Democrats have a playbook that includes making false accusations and committing acts of intimidation — even street violence. They adhere to it rigorously. They are much like a cult; once you’re in it, you may fear to leave it. Then, using their enforced unity, the Democrats overwhelm timid Republicans.
One of President Trump’s great successes was that he engendered a degree of courage in the Republican Party that it had not seen since at least as far back as the Reagan presidency. He was able to get the Republicans to “grow a spine.”
Now, however, with Trump removed from the White House by fraud, we are seeing the effects of the resulting leadership vacuum. Republican senators are once again wavering, waffling, seeking compromise, which leads only to surrender. They recently had it in their power to expose the election fraud, to prove it, and to defeat it. Instead, they thought they could return to business as normal and wait two years for the next election — an election that, according to the Democrat playbook, will never happen — unless it is as rigged as the 2020 election was.
The open question now is, will Republicans at the state and federal levels quickly understand the lesson that McConnell should be learning? Will they recognize that playing nice with Democrats only encourages them to continue, and increase, their dirty tactics?
There is some hope. In North Dakota, the state government has announced that it will disobey unconstitutional executive orders from the White House. That is a beginning, but it is tepid. More is needed. The Democrats are much bolder in their approach. For example, in states and cities they control, they blatantly and openly disregard immigration laws. This constitutes a virtual rebellion.
Republicans need to stiffen their resistance in like manner. If enough states reject the destructive policies handed down from on high, the Democrats will discover that they have bitten off more than they can chew. Even Governor Newsom (D-Calif.) is learning that, as his recall from office draws nearer.
Republicans in Congress, although out of power, need to mobilize their nongovernmental allies, few though they are, to vigorously investigate and expose the outrageous and pervasive corruption that stole the election. They need to stop pretending it didn’t happen. It did, and it will again.
They must not only prevent that; they must also demand the prompt removal from power of those who seized it illegally.
Most of all, those of us at the grassroots level must continually remind our representatives that our level of frustration is rising and that we will not tolerate the surrender of our rights to the Democrat machine.
If McConnell has not learned this from the Democrats, he needs to learn it from us: choose a side, and then fight like hell.