Time for the first Weekend Update of 2021. As usual, there is news that either broke after I finished compiling this weeks’s Friday Five post on Thursday night, or is a further development in a story I’ve linked to in previous Update posts of Friday Five posts and/or commented upon. Even with the holiday (which is usually a dead news period, but then we are in month 11 of a slow-burn apocalypse, so nothing is normal) there has been a lot. And while I wish I could spend a lot of time analyzing these stories today, this is going to have to be a quickie because I’m running an online RPG this afternoon and I still have to squeeze in a grocery run before I finish gathering my gaming things and log in. So, let’s jump in, shall we?
Pence seeks rejection of lawsuit that aimed to expand his power to overturn the election. Anyone who understands history, had actually read the Constitution, or paid more than a cursory attention to court rulings knew that the lawsuit was BS, and that the real goals of the filing was not to give future sitting Vice Presidents unchecked power to determine election outcomes by rather:
- generate headlines
- signal to the grifter’s rabid base that these politicians are on their side
- force Pence to say take a stand in the so-called debate, and thus eliminate him from the 2024 presidential nomination competition
- keep said rabid base donate money supposedly for these doomed election challenges, but actually going directly into the future campaign funds of said politicians
It’s a cynical grift. Unfortunately it is a dangerous one because it keeps the angry racist, homophobic, misogynist base of the GOP outraged and ready to do things to other people.
Pence tried to walk a fine line in his response, not disputing any of the baseless allegations or even the more irrational legal argument, but rather asserting that the Representative’s argument is with the entirety of the Senate and the House, not with him. The House Democrats filed an extensive brief that expertly tore apart each argument, so that’s at least in the record.
And the next day: Judge throws out Gohmert suit aimed at empowering Pence to overturn 2020 election results – the judge said Gohmert’s argument relied on entirely speculative circumstances. U.S. District Court Judge Jeremy Kernodle (a Trump appointee) threw out the case primarily on standing (the Supreme Court ruled some years ago that individual members of Congress can’t sue in these circumstances, because they aren’t individually harmed by what they allege has happened (among other things). But he went further, to point out that all of their arguments were based on speculation of things that might happen, but have not yet happened. Which also means there is no standing to sue, at least at this time. It’s not as thorough of a rebuke as the judge could have issued, but it is in line with what the courts have been doing for some time: rejecting on the narrowest means available.
Unfortunately, is looking like the January 6th ceremony that ought to be a mere formality of counted the already known Electoral Votes is going to be a bit more of a circus: Multiple senators oppose certifying election results. Again, there’s no way this is going to change the outcome of the election. It’s all about the bullet points above, plus attempting to stay on the grifter’s good side, so he doesn’t rage-tweet against them and encourage is base to support more batshit Republican candidates to run against them in their next primary.
In other words, we still have a few years of fighting that alt-right neo-Nazis ahead of his.
Even while all this is going on, at least for some things (military funding), Senators and Representatives of the fuckwit party will vote against the grifter-in-chief: Senate hands Trump his first veto override – The upper chamber approved the National Defense Authorization Act with a wide bipartisan majority over the president’s objections.
It is always about the grift…