The die is cast. And the Republicans have made it clear that they are ready to leave America for dead.
Senator Mitch McConnell has announced that the primary objective of the Republican Party is the defeat of President Obama in 2012. What they have already clearly shown is that they will use their new majority in the House of Representatives and their ability in the Senate to now block whatever they wish, to essentially oppose anything the president supports in order to embarrass and degrade him politically, regardless of the merits of the issue.
It is why Republicans are stalling the New Start treaty that will continue to reduce nuclear stockpiles here and in Russia. Does anyone in their right mind believe that this treaty is not good for America and the world? It is why Republicans will fight to their last lobbyist dollar for a $700 billion ten-year tax break for the wealthy with arguments that are economically laughable. It is why they hypocritically refuse to extend unemployment insurance for people suffering the consequences of the meltdown of our economy, for which Republicans are largely responsible.
Nothing the Republicans are doing or are likely to do in the next two years has anything to do with what is right or good or ethical for America. It’s only about beating Obama. And if that means stockpiling more nuclear weapons, letting the rich get richer while the poor sink deeper into poverty and giving the financial finger to people who lost jobs because of them, so be it.
And you can bet that this is just the beginning. Republicans subjected Bill Clinton to the ridiculous Whitewater investigation and eventually impeached him, for no other reasons than to impair his ability to govern, even to the detriment of the country. They claim to oppose Barack Obama on principle, but their policies are morally corrupt and their only agenda is recapturing the presidency by humiliating the president. Even at the height of George W. Bush’s unpopularity and strong Democratic majorities in Congress, his opposition never subjected him to such destructive cynicism. Despite his administration’s actions bringing the country (and much of the world) to the brink of economic disaster, Democrats voted with him to stave off financial collapse. Can you imagine where we’d be today if Democrats had been guided by McConnell’s mindless mandate to first and foremost oppose the president?
Republicans really don’t care much about this country they piously and pompously purport to love. (Jon Stewart said it best: Republicans love America, they just hate half the people who live in it.) Beating Obama is first on their self-proclaimed agenda, and the good of the country is a very distant second, if at all.
It’s enough to make Machiavelli blush.