On Capitol Hill Tuesday morning a bipartisan committee initiated hearings on the January 6th insurrection incited by Donald Trump. The first session (which Trump to upstage) focused on the testimony of heroic police officers who were among the victims of the riotous mobs that hoped to disrupt the functions of Congress and to overturn the will of the American people. They failed.
Also on Tuesday morning, another less ethical group of representatives staged their own partisan sideshow in a pitiful attempt to draw attention away from the hearings. They also failed. However, the Republican Pro-Insurrection Caucus press conference did manage to score a mention in the congressional hearing by Sgt. Aquilino Gonell, who noted that…
We’ve got people right now in front of the Justice Department asking to release some of the very same people to be released, even though we’re testifying about the trauma and the agony and everything that happened to us. It’s pathetic, and they shouldn’t be elected officials anymore.”
Reps. Gaetz, Greene, Gosar and Gohmert are "pathetic, and they shouldn't be elected officials anymore," says the sergeant. pic.twitter.com/3zyfCvJm5X
— Jan Wolfe (@JanNWolfe) July 27, 2021
The people that Sgt. Gonell was referring to at the Justice Department were the cream of the GOP’s Lunatic Brigade: Matt Gaetz, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Louis Gohmert, and Paul Gosar. They gathered together in support of the domestic terrorists who tried to shut down the U.S. Congress as it was carrying out its constitutional duty to certify the election. It did not go well for them.
— Wu-Tang Is For The Children (@WUTangKids) July 27, 2021
First of all, it’s clear that the press didn’t appear to be particularly interested. The StormTrumpers were outnumbered by protesters and security. The protesters made sure to get their signs in front of the cameras with messages like “Pedophiles for Trump” and “Traitors and Rapists Sit down.” And a lone whistleblower added some audio activism to the affair.
Facing this handful of “intolerant leftists” (as one of the GOP shills called them) was apparently too much for the Trumpublicans. So they turned tail and bravely ran away. All the while complaining about having been “shut down.” Which is ironic considering that they didn’t care at all about their own Capitol being shut down by the cretins they were there to defend.
Notice that none of the protesters vandalized any property or assaulted anyone with flagpoles or bear mace. This is what a peaceful protest actually looks like. And it didn’t take much to send the QAnon Quartet scampering off. Greene tried to show some gumption. “To the guy that’s blowing the whistle,” she gamely declared, “we are not deterred.” Then she immediately deterred herself into her getaway car.
Gaetz was followed by a persistent reporter, Lauren Windsor, asking a perfectly relevant question. “Are you a pedophile, Congressman Gaetz” she aske at least eleven times. And with all of those opportunities, Gaetz didn’t bother to deny it even once.
This fiasco comes on the heels of another recent catastrophic political event headlined by Gaetz and Greene. They went on a national “Put America First” tour. But they forgot to put their financial house in order and, as a result…
“Their campaigns and joint fundraising committee reported a combined loss of $342,000 within two months after kicking off their tour on 7 May at The Villages in Florida while pulling in less than $60,000 in contributions, according to Federal Election Commission reports reviewed by the publication.”
If this is any indication of how the 2022 congressional mid-term election is going, Republicans may be in a heap of trouble. But that is no reason for Democrats to get complacent. The future of American democracy is on the table, and those who value it need to work harder than ever to keep and expand the Democratic majorities in the House and Senate. While episodes like this are entertaining and encouraging, they must not lead to letting down our guard. The stakes have never been higher.
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