The Republican Party’s embrace of Donald Trump, first as a despicable presidential candidate, and then as an illegitimate president, was always going to come at a cost. You can’t stand that close to a career criminal who treasonously rigged the election, and not expect some of it to get on you. It’s taken quite a bit of time for it to come full circle. But the blowback against the GOP over the past hundred hours, inflicted both by Special Counsel Robert Mueller and by Trump himself, is nothing short of astounding.
So much has gone horribly wrong for Trump and the GOP over the past few days, it’s easy to forget that on Friday we received the stunning revelation that an unnamed Republican Congressman was accused in an indictment of conspiring with the Russians. Even as we were still digesting the news, yesterday saw the arrest of Russian political operative Maria Butina – and her indictment accused key unnamed Republican leaders of having had a backchannel with the Kremlin via the NRA.
Even as the number of congressional Republicans facing vaguely treason-related criminal charges continued to pile up, Donald Trump stepped to the plate – by standing next to Vladimir Putin and blaming America for Russia’s election hacking. This was such a grotesque betrayal of the United States, dozens of Republican leaders felt compelled to release statements either contradicting or condemning Trump. That list included some of Trump’s allies, who presumably felt they had no choice in coming out against him, as they had to retain a shred of credibility or no one would ever listen to them again.
We’re now looking at the stunning reality that multiple Republicans in Congress – including some of its key leaders – will soon end up criminally indicted in a treason plot with Russia. This comes even as every Republican in Congress faces overwhelming pressure to do something to stop Donald Trump’s ongoing treason. If the GOP makes a last ditch move to oust Trump now, the party will be torn apart in the process. If the GOP does nothing, voters will wipe the party out in November. The GOP should have rejected Trump to begin with. Now the entire party is going to pay, and some of them are looking at prison.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report