I’m not sure I’ve seen a politician do anything as stupid as Mike Johnson releasing all this footage and putting January 6th back in the headlines after most people had moved on from it. When the news topic of the day is January 6th, the Republicans automatically lose the news cycle. There’s no spin the Republicans can put on January 6th that makes them look anything other than terrible. It’s an “automatic loss“ topic for them. All they can do is hope people forget it happened. Instead they’re ensuring a whole new round of January 6th news coverage.
I’ve heard a lot of explanations for Johnson’s supposed strategy behind this move. He’s trying to fire up his own base. He’s trying to make Trump happy. He’s trying to create a distraction from… whatever. But none of this explains the sheer stupidity of this move.
I really think it’s time for us to just call a spade a spade when it comes to this kind of self-defeating stupidity on the part of the Republican Party. If someone sets their own house on fire, you don’t sit around coming up with strategic reasons for why they must’ve done it. You just accept the obvious, which is that it was simply a really dumb self-defeating move on their part.
These Republicans simply don’t have a strategy. Or if they do, it’s so incoherently stupid and self-defeating as to be indecipherable from random acts of stupidity. I don’t think we should waste any more time trying to assign a coherent motive to stupid. The Republicans’ stupidity makes them vulnerable, and we should highlight it and take advantage of that weakness, not paper over it with rational explanations for their irrational stupidity.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report