12 February 2020

cry the lost republic

Benjamin Franklin is reputed to have told a lady as he left the Constitutional Convention that the new government is a republic, "if you can keep it." It is sobering to realize we are failing that test.

One of the common phrases in our republic was, "no one is above the law." And yet of a morning we have Mr. Trump celebrating his, "exoneration," which simply does not exist.  Senate Republicans abandoned their oath to, "do impartial justice "(Rule XXV of the Senate Rules in Impeachment Trials.) Only Mitt Romney who actually is a man of honor voted for a guilty decision.

Now comes the news that Mr. Trump is talking openly about refusing to leave the White House after a second term.

.....at the end of 6 years, after America has been made GREAT again and I leave the beautiful White House (do you think the people would demand that I stay longer? KEEP AMERICA GREAT),,,,,

Trump, Donald J. quoted by USA , Saturday edition 2/8/20 at "https://www.usatoday.com/story/" (excerpted)

There are a number of things wrong with this. Does Mr. Trump actually not know that 4 + 4 = 8? One does not leave the White House after six years, barring a second impeachment trial. Is he that far down the dementia road? If either answer is yes, Heaven help us.

Beyond the math error, this is Trump actually talking about not handing the presidency to an elected successor. And he is doing this in the context of an outright assault on the professionals in the State and Justice departments. Various Republican politicians are suggesting that Mr. Trump was joking. The problem is that there is no record of his ever joking, and the acts against the professionals are real.

The bastion against a would be dictator is of course, Congress. We have just seen that the Senate is not even a paper tiger.

Growing up I was taught to pledge allegiance to the republic for which the flag stands. I taught my sons and a number Cub and Boy Scouts to pledge the same. Now that republic might be dying before our eyes. Cry for the Republic.

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