4 minute read

Anyone in Congress who continues to support President Donald Trump right now is an accomplice to his crimes against the American people. They have enabled him as he lied to our fellow citizens, many of whom trust him to their core, and because these members of Congress so tightly embraced Trump, his lies are now their lies.

On Sept. 9, Washington Post associate editor Bob Woodward released excerpts from recordings of his 18 Trump interviews he conducted this year for his upcoming book about the president, Rage. In those tapes, Woodward proves that Trump knew about the dangers of COVID-19, yet actively downplayed the danger.

Opinion

Opinion

by George Lang, opinion writer for Free Press

“You just breathe the air and that’s how it’s passed,” Trump said in a call with Woodward on Feb. 7. “And so that’s a very tricky one. That’s a very delicate one. It’s also more deadly than even your strenuous flus. This is deadly stuff.”

Five weeks later, at a time when he was characterizing coronavirus as being no worse than a typical flu, he told Woodward, “I wanted to always play it down. I still like playing it down, because I don’t want to create a panic.”

Trump feeds on panic — his entire presidency is predicated on white-hot fear, whether it was stoking racial and political hatred, spreading lies about mail-in voting or letting the Qanon dolts run wild with their fairy tale. His only worry was panic on Wall Street, because otherwise, Trump is the president of panic.

His deadly and criminal failure cost us all.

Woodward’s recordings prove that Trump knew the terrible toll this disease would extract from our nation, and he chose to look the other way. Perhaps worst of all, he betrayed his followers by mocking the use of masks, telling them their children were “almost immune” from COVID-19, suggesting that they ingest bleach and encouraging them to take hydroxychloroquine, a drug that only a few quack doctors, Laura Ingraham and America’s stupidest congressman, Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas, will vouch for these days to treat coronavirus.

Nearly 200,000 Americans are now dead. There is no question that quick, decisive, and medically-based action from Trump could have saved many of them, but the president chose to create a circus around the disease, “flooding the zone with shit,” as Trump political adviser Steve Bannon once said.

Trump is toxic, and yet Republican congressional candidate Stephanie Bice still “stands with Trump.” If Bice stands with Trump, she stands with lying to the American public, letting people become gravely ill or die from a terrible disease, cuddling up to dictators and calling fallen American service members “losers” and “suckers.”

This president besieged this nation with a torrent of hate and neglect, and yet U.S. Senators Jim Inhofe and James Lankford pull out their favored deflections, abortion, and “religious freedom,” to ostensibly change the subject. Both of them are cowards.

Inhofe’s default petulance aside, he always espouses support for the military, but when Trump derides the wounded and killed service members, Inhofe says absolutely nothing. He is gutless and devoid of the strength we require in times of crisis.

Similarly, Lankford professes his Christianity any chance he gets, but would a true Christian sit by and let Trump lay waste to our humanity and decency, not to mention all those people whose lives ended while hooked up to ventilators?

Real leaders would band together and descend on the Oval Office, where they would tell the president that his support in Congress was eroding quickly and, with a new impeachment resolution on the floor, his options were limited.

That is what happened August 7, 1974, and the next day, President Richard Nixon resigned.

Now, there is no courage to be found. All the Republicans in Congress breeze past microphones these days, hurriedly telling reporters they have not heard the recordings or read the book.

All of these men and women are vacating their responsibility to the American people. They are a disgrace.

In his recent interview with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, former Trump consigliere Michael Cohen said that if Trump loses the election, he would likely resign and allow Vice President Mike Pence to preemptively pardon him. This is a reasonable prediction and one in keeping with the garbage fire we have lived in for the past four years.

But I want elected Senators to do it. Since the Trump cabinet is filled with lackeys and parasites, invoking the 25th Amendment will not happen. We need brave men and women to stand up and show him the door.

Instead, we have feckless Senators who only show their cowardice.


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