The constitutional crisis is accelerating. We are also at an interesting moment. President Donald Trump has said he will be impeached. For him this is now a given, and he needs to set the talking points. He needs to feed the base, and the meat needs to be extremely red, even dripping with blood.
He is not crazy. This is calculated to activate his base and blunt the effect of a constant water hose of news. The damn has broken, and revelations continue to accelerate. He also reversed his decision to host the G-7 meeting at El Doral in Florida, after he learned they were not able to defend him. He blames the media and the radical Democrats, however, it was Republicans. This is per the New York Times:
Launching into a series of attacks on Democrats, Mr. Trump said approvingly that they were “vicious and they stick together. They don’t have Mitt Romney in their midst — they don’t have people like that.”
”They stick together,” Mr. Trump added, during a lengthy question-and-answer session with reporters at a cabinet meeting. “You never see them break off.”
It was the second time in as many days that Mr. Trump — coming to terms with the fact that he will most likely be impeached by the Democratic-led House within weeks and face a Senate trial immediately after — has complained about a lack of support from Republicans as he faces the greatest threat yet to his presidency.
Trump will get more brash, and increasingly dangerous. He needs to distract and to play a fine game of what about? He also is desperate to set the ground for his base. This is a political group that increasingly is composed of people who get all their news from conspiracy sites and the far-right news ecosystem. This is not one that lives in the same environment as the rest of the country. One problem will be Fox News, especially the afternoon shows. But also other less known sites like the Gateway Pundit, Zero Hedge, and the Western Journal. Most of these sites run stories that have more or less in the realm of conspiracies. However, all engage in some form of fantastical thinking, including talk of a coup, and the deep state. All use a fairly liberal offering of anger and hate.
These sites will continue to push these theories. They, in effect, are encouraging talk of a coming civil war. These can become reality, as those who feel aggrieved feel trapped.
Trump is going to get even more fantastical and angry. His rallies already remind me of those of many authoritarian leaders. If you thought they were out there, just wait.
He is trying hard to establish both defense and talking points. However, this talk of revolution, angrier, deep state, etcetera, may get more angry people to act. When he gets impeached, these people may decide they had enough. We are, in other words, entering one of the most dangerous moments in American history.
As Congress moves forward with impeachment, the Republican firewall is cracking. This is not just Senator Mitt Romney who is no fan. When Lindsey Graham told Axios he is open, that likely was a crack heard across Pennsylvania Avenue.
The flashpoint is over Syria and the disaster Trump unleashed. It is safer politically, but it is an opening.
As they say, watch this space. Things will continue to accelerate. One blessing with Richard Nixon is that he kept most of his anger in tapes. Trump is very open. So if we get to the delegation marching up to Pennsylvania Avenue, will Trump resign or fight it all the way. Time will tell.
As the Chinese curse states, may you live in interesting times… with Graham signaling, we have entered a new phase.