Jeff Flake and John McCain talk a big game about resisting the Trump Administration’s dismantling of our public democracy, but if they were serious about evicting Trump, they could switch parties, give the Democratic caucus Senate Majority power, and help Democrats investigate and impeach Donald Trump.
They could even switch back to the Republican Party once Trump is gone. It’s just that, right now, the rest of the Republican Party is currently serving American values like deer stuck in the bright headlights of a totalitarian bus Donald Trump is driving under the influence of a bruised ego and an admiration for dictators-for-life.
Signs point to Jeff Flake running for President against Trump in 2020, so a caucus switch would really screw over that plan—inviting easy attacks for abandoning the party—but, if Flake stays in the GOP and runs, would he at least do the country a favor and stay in until the end of the general election and split the Republican vote against Trump so that the Democrat wins? Or would he fold under the pressure of doing more to obstruct Trump’s national, existential damage than merely delivering flowery speeches aimed at coloring his spineless legacy of Trump resistance? Would Flake drop out of the race early after losing the national primary with a measly “I tried”?
Perhaps it is time to point out that Trump’s legal strategy is based on a monarchy-sounding and Constitutional crisis-inducing opinion that a President should be above the law. We have passed the point at which we should applaud half-measures, and Senate Republicans’ resistance to Trumpism is not resistance as long as they are Republicans affording collaborator Mitch McConnell majority power. Trump has hijacked the party, McConnell has blindfolded himself, and it is time to jump ship.
Such a civic-minded party switch for the good of the country would certainly be a legacy-cementing act for John McCain. He could switch to the Democratic side and force Mitch McConnell to suffer more difficult math in strategizing his Machiavellian and corrupt legislative tactics. McCain has expressed disdain for the Senate’s dishonest methods of Congressional lawmaking and the soiling of his beloved institution, so why not force his complicit Majority Leader to have to compromise a bit more by giving his 1/100th representation to the Democrats?
The Senate must not refuse its regulatory responsibility for the executive branch. Senate Republicans must functionally rebut Trump’s claims to be above the law. He cannot be allowed to weasel out of the FBI’s Russian collusion, financial fraud, and obstruction of justice investigations. The House is a lost cause, hijacked by a partisan minority of conservative fundamentalists—some of whom are actively assisting the President to mislead the American people and obstruct justice—but it would be nice to see the handful of rationally dignified Senate Republicans honor their responsibility to both Constitutional law and legislative duty.
Or perhaps Flake and McCain could talk Ben Sasse, Bob Corker, Susan Collins, and any other occasional moderates into withholding their votes for future legislation until McConnell did something serious to investigate, censor, or impeach Trump. Several Republicans have identified the problem of Trump not belonging in the Oval Office, but what are they doing about it other than staring into the headlights?
Meanwhile, Rudy Giuliani is calling for ending the Mueller probe. The Senate cannot put off impeachment for much longer before Trump makes dictatorial power a precedent of US presidential law.