Posted by Curt on 30 September, 2017 at 4:46 pm. Be the first to comment!


Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion:

As the GOP-led Congress fails to fulfill its seven-year, oft-repeated pledge to repeal ObamaCare and fails to support meaningful immigration reform that includes securing our border (building the wall), right-leaning voters who put them in power are becoming more and more restless, frustrated, and angry.

Luther Strange’s primary drubbing in Alabama suggests that the Trump phenomena is looking less and less like a cult of personality and more and more like a Tea Party-inspired insurrection.

When then-presidential candidate Trump said that he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose any voters, many pundits and politicians marveled at his hubris while others rankled at the all-too-apparent truth of his statement. Trump supporters stuck with him through the Inside Edition tape release and the Trump University fiasco.  His opponents on both the left and the right were puzzled beyond measure, and for good reason.  These and any number of other problematic issues in Trump’s background would have derailed any politician.

That, though, is the key to the Trump-led insurrection, for an insurrection it is.  Trump is not a politician.

When Trump came onto the scene, the timing was exactly right.  The Tea Party had been thwarted by the combined efforts of Democrat and Republican elites in DC, helped along by a malignant propagandist media, but we were still out here, still angry, still determined to take our country back.

So when Trump started talking about making America great again, about how he could not be bought, about how he could get things done, alienated Americans rallied behind him.  As long-time LI readers know, I didn’t get it because I thought it was about Trump the man, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.  Instead, the quasi-Tea Party style insurrection seems to be about more than Trump himself.  It’s about taking our country back . . . and while we’d like to do it with Trump, his involvement is not essential.

Alabama’s GOP primary for Attorney General Jeff Sessions Senate seat illustrates this point.  Though Trump campaigned for Strange and tweeted his praises (tweets he’s since deleted), the voters of Alabama were having none of it.  They voted instead for “the Ten Commandants judge” Roy Moore (whom Trump mistakenly called “Ray”).

Whether or not Moore wins the seat remains to be seen, but one thing is clear, Alabama’s Republican voters wanted no part of Strange who appeared to be a rubber stamp for anything Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell put in front of him.  Trump’s support doesn’t appear to have made any difference at all; indeed, Trump’s support was negated by overwhelming distaste for McConnell and the do-nothing GOP-led Congress.

A Time for Choosing PAC provides insight into these dynamics.

Roy Moore’s victory in the Alabama Senate race is a stunning rebuke to Mitch McConnell and the Washington establishment.

Tonight should cause the President and the Senate Republican Conference to seriously evaluate whether or not McConnell has either the vision or political acumen to lead the Senate Republican Conference any longer. There is a good argument to be made that McConnell is now a dead weight around the necks of GOP Senators who have to face an angry GOP base in 2018.

Despite Trump’s endorsement, the Sunday night before the Primary, the race was still essentially tied.

Ultimately, Mitch McConnell and his team managed to convince Trump to double down for Luther again the day before the election . . . .  [W]e learned something very important during the primary: If you want to win Senate primaries, put Mitch McConnell on the ballot. [emphasis in original]

This puts Trump in an awkward position because while he has yet to lose significant support from his voters, he’s been put on notice, as has the GOP, that the clock is ticking and the voters who put them in power are watching and expecting substantive and long-promised change.

Challenges to Republican incumbents from the right are emerging in numerous 2018 Congressional races, signalling that Republican voters are getting tired of waiting and are more than willing to shake things up.  If Trump appears to align with these choices, he’s more than welcome, but if he’s not, Republican voters will vote for the more conservative candidate . . . whether Trump endorses him or her or not.

In addition to Alabama, Arizona is shaping up to be another battleground between the status quo in Washington and what voters actually want.  Sitting Senator Jeff Flake (R) and the more conservative former state senator Kelli Ward  Dubbed “toxic” by Trump, Flake has been outspoken in his disapproval of and disagreements with the president, and he’s urging Republicans to speak out against Alabama’s Roy Moore.

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