Posted August 31, 2017 | by Tom Barksdale | in Civil Rights, Georgia, Minorities, Republicans, Trump
Arpaio Pardon Lays Bare Rotted Souls of Georgia Republicans
In the space of one week in August, Donald Trump delivered a series of sledge hammer blows at America’s basic democratic and moral values that led even some Republicans to question his fitness for office and his mental condition. He began by declaring on August 15 that there was no difference between the white supremacists, neo-Nazi, and KKK groups that staged demonstrations in Charlottesville, and their opponents.
To most Americans, Trump’s remarks at a minimum were an attempt to pander to the right-wing extremist groups that staged the demonstrations, which included a night time, torch-carrying march right out of the German Nazi playbook, with participants shouting ant-Semitic slogans.
At a campaign-rally-type gathering in Phoenix on August 22, Trump bypassed any effort to promote national unity and unleashed a diatribe that magnified exponentially what an immoral, unhinged person he is with offensive comments designed to appeal to his Republican base that welcomes his race-baiting, bigoted, and xenophobic message.
In one angry rant after another, he repeatedly attacked the media and defended his response to the violent clashes in Charlottesville. He threatened to shut down the government if he doesn’t receive funding for a wall along the Mexican border, announced that he will “probably” get rid of the North American Free Trade Agreement, attacked the state’s two Republican senators, repeatedly referred to protesters as “thugs”—and hinted at his upcoming pardon of Joe Arpaio.
Many Republicans Express Disgust
In reaction to Trump’s remarks, dozens of Republican lawmakers, former GOP governors and other elected officials, as well as business and community leaders, distanced themselves from him in revulsion—although most limited themselves to anodyne statements denouncing racism and violence as having no place in America. Only a few explicitly denounced Trump by name, repudiated his words, or called for any action to be taken against him. Some of the more explicit remarks:
Senator Bob Corker, Tennessee: Trump “has not demonstrated he understands the character of this nation…The President has not yet been able to demonstrate the stability nor some of the competence that he needs to demonstrate in order to be successful.”
Senator Lindsey Graham, South Carolina: “because of the manner in which you have handled the Charlottesville tragedy, you are now receiving praise from some of the most racist and hate-filled individuals and groups in our country. For the sake of our nation — as our President — please fix this.”
Senator Jeff Flake, Arizona, recently released a book, “The Conscience of a Conservative,” in which he criticizes Trump and condemns the Republican Party for enabling Trump’s rise to power. He says Trump’s campaign was “free of significant thought” and compares it to a “late-night infomercial.”
In response, Trump labeled Flake “toxic” and praised his Republican primary opponent. Flake’s GOP supporters fired back, including his fellow Arizona Senator John McCain. Colorado Senator Cory Gardner spoke not only for self but as the chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, said the group “unequivocally supports” Flake.
Mitt Romney called on Trump to address the nation and apologize for his Charlottesville comments
Leaders of some of America’s largest corporations resigned en masse from White House business councils.