GOP Delenda Est

In the Debates held in the Roman Senate prior to the Third Punic War (149–146 BC) between Rome and Carthage, Cato the Censor is said to have uttered the phrase “Carthago Delenda Est” — Carthage must be destroyed.

The time has come for the Republican Party to also be left to the ash heap of history, after inciting and encouraging the failed (for now) coup attempt of 6th January 2021. Because that’s what it was, despite our media’s desperate attempts to call it anything else, for fear of being labeled “liberal” or “fake news.” An armed insurrection with the goal of overthrowing the results of a free election, and installing a leader of their choosing. That is the textbook definition of a coup.

The blood had not yet been cleaned from the floor of the Capitol (one of the insurrectionists, a four-tour US Air Force veteran, shot by Capitol Police while attempting to storm the House Chamber), when the self-same members of the Republican Party, who had created this crisis by spinning fantasies of a “stolen election,” continued their performative sedition. They insisted on engaging in their self-aggrandizing objections to the counting of certified Electoral College results from several states.

147 Republicans — 8 Senators and a clear majority of the House Republican Caucus — chose to continue their grandstanding, even after their reckless lies had resulted in the Capitol coming under attack for the first time since the Civil War, resulting in four deaths.

Either these Republicans are shameless hucksters, trying to con Trump’s supporters into seeing them as his natural successors, or we must take them at their word — that they are a fascist movement that has attempted to overthrow our democracy.

The rot is pervasive within the GOP. Today, a poll was released indicating that fully half of Republican voters agreed with the assault on our democracy. This is more than a flirtation with authoritarianism. This is half of one of our two major political parties willing to openly express their support of fascism. This is not something that can be ignored. This movement must be destroyed.

For the past 5 years, anybody who sounded the alarm about the growing fascist movement in the Republican Party was dismissed as “overreacting.” Our pundit class, and the Democratic establishment tut-tutted our “hyperbole” in the name of collegiality. The conservatives that they attended cocktail parties with were fine people, after all, and should not be smeared with such a broad brush.

The picture below features some of the “fine people” who assaulted our democracy yesterday, who were encouraged by your Republican colleagues, even after the riot. Even now, your Republican colleagues are engaged in further lying, claiming on social media that “facial recognition software” has proved that the REAL villains were “Antifa.”

On the left, we see members of the Proud Boys, who President Trump encouraged to “stand back and stand by.” The black-and-yellow is a Proud Boy signifier, and this gentleman’s shirt is emblazoned with an eagle surmounting a literal Fasces, the emblem from which fascism takes its name. The slogan “6MWE” stands for “6 Million Wasn’t Enough” — a reference to the Holocaust.

At center we see an individual who was photographed several times during the day, including in the Capitol. His sweatshirt, featuring the SS death’s head emblem, says “Camp Auschwitz.”

On the right is one of several gallows that were erected by Trump’s supporters.

Lest you think that these are outliers, and not representative of the Republican party, consider the words of incoming GOP Congresswoman Mary Miller of Illinois, who, recorded addressing the mob at the rally earlier in the day, said: “Hitler was right on one thing, he said, whoever has the youth has the future.”

And, as the Washington Post reported today, Donald Trump phoned in to a meeting of the Republican National Committee last night. This was the result:

The Republican Party has a cancer which has taken over half of its body, perhaps more. Open, unashamed fascists have been marching in our streets, and now they have stormed our Capitol. The people who tried to stand against these fascists have been turned by conservative media into the “real villains.” They have turned the word “anti-fascist” into somehow a bad thing. For decades, the GOP played with fire, encouraging the fringe of the right wing as useful voters. They ginned up Culture War and no-compromise politics.

Well now, as is said in the urban legend of the babysitter and the man upstairs, “the call is coming from inside the house.” Literally. We have open, Hitler-admiring fascists serving in the House of Representatives, and soulless opportunists in the Senate willing to violate every democratic norm in the pursuit of power.

The Republican Party needs to be destroyed. The cancer is too deep. Conservatives who still possess some shred of decency should split off to form a new Conservative Party, because I doubt that any have the stomach to expel the fascists from the GOP. I would like to be proven wrong.

We cannot afford to let fascism be normalized. They must be fought, and utterly destroyed, because, as I’ve said here before, Democracy requires that we get it right every time. They only need to get it right ONCE.

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