roses are red
the constitution’s just paper
seems clear we have
a would be dictator
— b-boy bouiebaisse (@jbouie) February 14, 2019
Bouie’s tweet naturally attracted a bunch of angry MAGAts, but it’s worth clicking on Kruse’s follow-up for more:
Roses are red
In a vase on the shelf
Listen, this Reichstag
Ain't gonna burn itself!
— Kevin M. Kruse (@KevinMKruse) February 14, 2019
Roses are red
Trump's mood is blue.
If he don’t get a Wall
He'll blame it on you!
Roses are red
McConnell is pale.
May the end of all this
Please see him in jail.
— Guy Gavriel Kay (@guygavrielkay) February 14, 2019
When our Reichstage is aflame might be Trump that strikes the match
But the gas on the carpet?
We can thank Mitch for that.
— Shiro Kabocha (@jdubya65) February 14, 2019
Susan Glasser, in the New Yorker — “The New Republican Strategy for Dealing with the Emergency That Is Trump: Pray” —
… No one these days, not even the loyal Republican guard on Capitol Hill, can predict what Trump, increasingly cornered by the results of a midterm election that handed Democrats control of the House of Representatives, will do or say. There is no Team Trump from the President’s point of view, only a leader and his followers, yet the entire Trump Presidency is an extended reminder of the fact that it’s awfully hard to follow if you don’t know where the leader wants you to go. “I would have preferred we not had the shutdown,” Steve Scalise, the Republican Whip in the House, said Thursday morning, without knowing if there might be another. When CNN caught up with his G.O.P. colleague Richard Shelby, the chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, who cut the deal, Shelby was unsure of what Trump would do, as well. “I pray” that he will sign the spending bill, Shelby said. At around that same time, the Republican Chuck Grassley was on the Senate floor, asking the entire chamber to join in seeking divine intervention with Trump. “Let’s all pray that the President will have the wisdom to sign the bill, so that the government doesn’t shut down,” he said, as Washington waited, once again, on its capricious President.
So it’s finally come to this: only God can stop Trump, as members of his own party are admitting that they’ve basically given up trying. Sure enough, a few hours after Grassley spoke, McConnell returned to the Senate floor and announced that the President would sign the bill but also declare a national emergency in order to fund the wall. The whole episode served only to underscore the plight of congressional Republicans under Trump: holding their breath and praying that Trump doesn’t humiliate them even more than he already has with the shutdown drama; praying that something worse doesn’t happen, such as a Mueller report that forces them to publicly choose between their President and their country; praying that the Democrats will somehow overplay their hand so badly that it changes the subject in next year’s elections from Trump and all his divisiveness. “That soft, shuffling sound you hear is congressional Republicans stepping away from President Trump,” the political commentator John Harwood wrote, in his CNBC column on Tuesday. In the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday, the lead editorial begged Trump to declare “border victory” and go home. “The bipartisan deal is his only good way out of this budget box canyon,” the paper said. Underscoring the point, the editors ran an op-ed on the page across from the editorial headlined “Trump’s wall crumbles under the law of diminishing returns.” The piece argued that Trump is in such trouble now because he “promised to be a dealmaker, not a conviction politician,” and he just doesn’t have deals to brag about…
… Trump, however, has already begun the process of memorializing his epic defeat as a victory, and will claim that his emergency declaration is more than sufficient grounds to move money around from elsewhere in the federal budget to accomplish his border plans. Even if the courts shoot him down on that one, it still probably won’t matter to the President, who is likely to brag that he has won, anyway. On Monday, in fact, he held a campaign rally in El Paso underneath a banner that urged, “Finish the Wall!” Never mind that the wall is not even begun, and likely never will be; never mind that Mexico, despite the President’s oft-repeated promise, is not going to pay for it; never mind the details of the congressional compromise. Trump’s self-protective alternate-reality machine found a way around the facts. “The wall is very, very on its way,” he said on Wednesday. “We are building as we speak.” He added that the nonexistent wall, which is not being finished or even built, would, in fact, be harder than Mount Everest to climb, which instantly became one of those Trump-era tweets that you’re not sure is a joke or something the President of the United States actually said…
Meanwhile, not everyone has been taking a vacation from reality, and the nature of the Democratic threat to Trump from the newly empowered House leaders is becoming clearer. This week, two House committees, Intelligence and Judiciary, signalled an aggressive approach to investigating Trump—without waiting for the report of the special counsel, Robert Mueller. House Democrats “plan a vast probe of Trump and Russia—with a heavy focus on money-laundering,” as Mike Allen declared in his Axios morning newsletter, reporting from a briefing, which we both attended, with a House Democrat. Trump “is not in a position to draw red lines” and block Democrats from looking into his finances, the member told a roomful of reporters. The House Democrats’ investigation could include the financial dealings of Trump and his family not only with Russian interests but also with Saudis and other Gulf states. On the House Judiciary Committee, the new chairman this week hired two well-known Democratic lawyers who have publicly led the calls for an obstruction-of-justice investigation of Trump, which could lead to his impeachment…