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John Cornyn Adopts Trump-Like Fascism Techniques. Good Job, Donald! [Updated.]

Dan Crawford sent me links to these two articles about Senate Judiciary Committee enforcer John Cornyn’s threat on Tuesday that he and his compadres will destroy the reputation of anyone nominated by Obama for Scalia’s seat.  I responded to him after reading the articles:

You know, Dan, this is so palpably, stunningly offensive that Sanders and Clinton need to tell the public about it.  It’s really just jaw-dropping. It’s just … I don’t know; I can’t even think of a perfect adjective.  Scary, maybe?


Sanders, especially, should mention this on the campaign trail as a way to illustrate the lengths that the people who want the federal courts—most prominently but by no means only, the Supreme Court—to continue to serve as a fully owned subsidiary of Koch Industries and the legal arm of the Republican Party, albeit with the full force of the United States government’s powers.

Cornyn is a former Texas state supreme court justice and Texas attorney general.  I’m betting that his professional history isn’t pretty, so he’s perfect to have his Fascism routine turned back on him. As in, turnabout is fair play.  Exposing his record as a state supreme court justice and a state attorney general to national examination may, given what some of the specifics are likely to be, ensure his seat as a Texas senator for as long as he wants it.  But it also may well help in making the remainder of his tenure as a senator, beginning next January, be as a member of the Senate minority.

And I don’t mean that I expect him to become a Democrat.

Thug-like threats and actions aren’t likely to appeal to a majority of voters.  As Trump’s general-election and favorability poll numbers indicate.

In other words: Citizens united against Citizens United!  And so very much more.  Hoist this politician by his own piñata.


UPDATE: The New York Times today has an editorial on this, writing:

On Monday, John Cornyn, the senior Republican senator from Texas, warned President Obama that if he dares to name a successor to Justice Antonin Scalia of the Supreme Court, the nominee “will bear some resemblance to a piñata.”

Violent imagery has been commonplace in political statements for a long time, but even so, it is disgraceful for a senator to play the thug, threatening harm to someone simply for appearing before Congress to answer questions about professional accomplishments and constitutional philosophy

The editorial is titled “Republican Threats and the Supreme Court”.

Senator, may we not drop this? … Senator. You’ve done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?

Added 3/11 at 8:42 a.m

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The National Review Invites Obama to Nip the Call-For-A-Balanced-Budget-Amendment Gimmickry In the Bud Tomorrow Night. Really.

The National Review scoops the Senate GOP’s next move, and note in particular the last paragraph:

Frustrated by the months of non-stop budget fights, Senate Republicans are set to mount a fiscal counteroffensive this week with the reintroduction of a balanced-budget amendment.

Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell and minority whip John Cornyn are leading the effort. They hope to unveil a bill by Thursday with unanimous Republican support. […]

House Republican aides say most conservatives in the lower chamber are going to support the Senate’s plan. Speeches and media appearances are being arranged for later this week. […]

According to a Senate GOP aide, the legislation would cap federal spending at 18 percent of GDP. It would also require a supermajority for tax hikes and debt-limit increases.

Okay, why would the National Review, or any high-profile non-mainstream source, put this out a day before the State of the Union address, if not to give Obama a chance to mention it, along with an accompanying explanation of how such an amendment would, say, cause recessions to spiral into depressions–during which time the availability of, say, unemployment compensation would decrease rather than increase, and emergency FEMA funds for, say, the destruction of South Carolina’s coastal region after a major hurricane would have to be offset by cuts in, say, veteran’s benefits or payments to active military personnel?

Any alternative theories about why the National Review did this today?  I can’t think of any.

If Obama doesn’t take this ball, this magnificent gift, and run with it tomorrow–if he doesn’t expose this crowd for the unremittingly sophomoric gimmick-a-day ignoramuses that they are–then I’m throwing up my hands.  

The National Review’s editors and staff must be starting to really fear the sequester.  And I’m not saying that facetiously. 

They also must actually recognize the likelihood that last November’s election results weren’t a fluke. A majority of the public even in some seemingly-safely gerrymandered Republican congressional districts and red states with Senate elections next year are not necessarily going to want to hand a box of matches to lunatics and mental adolescents, now that they’re learning that that’s what these people are.

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