The tide is beginning to turn
On October 10, 2019, a group of sixteen conservative lawyers called for the impeachment of Donald Trump for violating the Constitution and his oath of office by seeking help in his election bid from a foreign power.
While it's surprising to see a crack in Trump's solid backing by Republicans and conservatives, what is more astonishing is that one of those conservative lawyers is George Conway, the husband of Kelly Ann Conway, Donald Trump's fiercest loyal defender and spin master. And it's not the first time George Conway has criticized Donald Trumps' presidency.
This monumental family divide challenges the imagination. One can only wonder with bewilderment about the flow of conversation at the Conway dinner table.
But George Conway's courageous action suggests a way to get Trump's congressional sycophants to flip. And if just a few prominent Republican members of Congress step forward to embrace the truth about Trump a stampede is likely to follow.
Conway's stance reminds us that family members often disagree on politics and morality. Furthermore, family and close friends also know the difference between each other's private and public sentiments and when a clan member is flat out lying. While George Conway has not persuaded his wife to flip-- at least publically-- that may not be the case in other households as Trump's behavior gets increasingly out of control.
We know that the congressional sycophants are lying about Donald Trump because they thoroughly condemned him before he became the Republican candidate for president:
"He is a pathological liar"The man is utterly amoral" (Senator Ted Cruz).
" A piece of dirt is more qualified to be president" (Senator Rand Paul).
"I think he's crazy" He is unfit to be president" (Lindsay Graham)
If they in fact radically changed their assessments of Donald Trump, if they truly believe he's worthy of the worship they are now bestowing on him, they are incredibly stupid, can't be counted on to make sound or trustworthy judgments about people, and, therefore, are themselves not qualified for responsible positions. But we know they are not stupid from their actions and policies prior to sucking up to Trump.
Paul Rosenzweig, one of the sixteen conservative lawyers who called for impeachment--a George W. Bush appointee as Deputy Secretary in the Department of Homeland Security--was quoted in the Washington Post about the sycophants: "They're not idiots. They just need the courage, so if others say it first, perhaps that helps." And another member of the group, Don Ayer, Deputy Attorney General under President George H. W. Bush, expressed this outrage: "I am disgusted by the conduct of Republican senators who pose as reputable people, but shamelessly hide under rocks instead of calling out the president's horrendous behavior as the gross misconduct that they know it to be."
Perhaps the families and friends of the sycophants, who know they are lying, might have significant influence. Just as the conservative lawyers are horrified by the lies and lack of courage of their family of other conservatives, at least some among the sycophants' friends and families must also be horrified. Surely they are appalled by the sorry spectacle of immigrant children in cages, by the deluge of lies pouring out of the Oval Office, by the President's terrifying ignorance about foreign policy, his frightening and self-serving military decision-making, and his love-fests with autocrats. There must be other George Conways, Paul Rosenzweigs, and Don Ayers at family gatherings who express embarrassment, disgust, and outrage.
That's why the time is ripe for Democrats to go on the offensive as President Trump melts down and some Republicans are beginning to raise questions if not considering defection to salvage some semblance of a respectable legacy.
After each of Trump's deplorable actions, congressional Republicans should be confronted with a microphone or camera--preferably in their own districts--and pressed to state their approval or disapproval. Many will dodge the question or put off an answer for "more evidence." But the questioner should insist on a yes or no answer, reminding the congressperson that avoiding yes or no will be taken as approval, an approval that will be part of a permanent document. These interviews should be widely disseminated--in their own districts to maximize the possibility of activating those who know the sycophants are lying.