Category Archives: political news

What is wrong with Rs?

For as long as I can remember I have shied away from lambasting those who adhere to a political party’s ideology or follow its guidance over the cliff … just because party leaders tell ‘em to do it.

I can’t remain silent now as the Georgia runoff for the U.S. Senate approaches. My question is this: What in the world is wrong with Georgia Republicans who continue to stand behind the moron masquerading as a candidate for the Senate seat held by Democrat Raphael Warnock?

Herschel Walker is without question the most unfit, unqualified individual to run for the Senate in the past century. Hell, maybe ever!

And yet … we see political polls showing the race still in the neck-and-neck category.

My goodness! The list of disqualifiers for Walker is approaching the list that accompanies Donald J. Trump.

He preaches a strong anti-abortion stance, but has been accused by at least two women of forcing them to abort babies conceived by Walker himself. He stands as a “family guy,” but has nothing to do with many of the children he brought into this world. Walker claimed a tax exemption in Texas that goes to “primary residents” of this state … but he’s running for political office in Georgia. Walker recently spent several minutes on the stump mumbling nonsense about whether it’s better to be a vampire or a werewolf. Finally, Walker cannot speak with any semblance of intelligence about any serious policy matter.

Yet he continues to run close to Sen. Warnock.

This phenomenon makes me wonder out loud what I have kept to myself for virtually my entire adult life: Are grassroots Republican voters really that stupid?

Rep. Jackson: MAGA fool

Ronny Jackson has me scratching my noggin bloody. The newly re-elected freshman U.S. representative from Amarillo has emerged as one of the nation’s premier MAGA election denying nut jobs in Congress.

And to think he represents what used to be my congressional district, where my wife and I lived for 23 years before we moved to the Metroplex.

What drives me just this side of the funny farm are his incessant Twitter messages questioning President Biden’s fitness for office. Indeed, I have wondered about Jackson’s fitness for the office he occupies.

It staggers me as well to believe the residents of the13th Congressional District would re-elect this guy, let alone elect him in the first place in 2020.

The 13th District was represented for the entire length of my journalism career in Amarillo by Republican Mac Thornberry of Clarendon. Thornberry was a back bencher for much of his time in Congress. Then he earned the chairmanship of the House Armed Services Committee. For a time, Thornberry occupied a ringside seat of military policy, and he did his job with a huge measure of dignity and decorum I do not see in the individual who succeeded him.

What I continue to see in Jackson are the antics of a raving lunatic. I know that sounds strange to say, given that Jackson is a retired Navy admiral and is a former physician who served two presidents: Barack Obama and Donald Trump.

Since being elected to Congress after moving into the 13th District, though, Jackson has gone mad. He is a frequent guest on the Fox Propaganda Network, spouting the trash about Joe Biden –without, of course, ever being challenged by his interviewers.

Whenever I read a tweet from Jackson that accuses the president of being everything but the spawn of Satan, I cannot stop wondering: What in the world would Jackson do if the 13th Congressional District needed a presidential declaration in the case of dire emergency? Would he ask for it?

It is as if Jackson is burning every bridge there is between the congressional district he represents and the White House.

I just don’t get it.

Kari Lake: newest Big Liar

Kari Lake is trying to supplant Donald J. Trump as the nation’s most vocal proponent of some version of The Big Lie.

Lake, the failed Republican candidate for Arizona governor, is refusing to concede that she lost to Democratic Gov.-elect Katie Hobbs. Lake also is accusing county elections officials of fraud, incompetence and being crooks.

That’s right. If you don’t win, then hurl derogatory labels at professional election officials and hope that something sticks.

It’s not going to work.

Lake is a Donald Trump acolyte who has challenged the validity of the 2020 presidential election. She is an election denier! She vowed to overturn — were she elected governor — the Arizona presidential vote total that went for Joe Biden over Trump.

Kari Lake is exhibiting a profound case of political idiocy.

Going to ignore Trump

I am going to make a solemn pledge and I expect y’all to hold me to it.

I hereby intend to ignore Donald J. Trump’s “candidacy” for president of the United States. His proclamations on the campaign trail will mean not a damn thing to me. I do not believe a single word that flies out of his mouth.

Now, I will keep both eyes on his legal trouble. I will have plenty to say on those issues as they unfold. His alleged candidacy? Not a chance.

There might be an occasion where Trump says something I consider defamatory. I’ll weigh my options then, take them on a case-by-case basis.

He won’t have an original idea to offer. He won’t offer a view for the future. He will continue to litigate The Big Lie involving alleged “widespread voter fraud” and the 2020 election.

There is no point in commenting on any of that.

So there. You may take that to the bank.

Pelosi bows out with class

Nancy Pelosi has made her share of foes — as well as friends — over her many years as a leader in Congress.

Today, though, the lame-duck speaker of the House demonstrated a rare form of grace and class as she declared her intention to stay in Congress while forgoing any future attempts to remain a leader within the Democratic Party caucus.

Pelosi can consider me a friend and a fan, for sure.

She spoke to a nearly full House of Representatives chamber today to announce her political future. Pelosi declared her intent to remain loyal to her San Francisco constituents … also while remaining loyal to the oath she took as a member of Congress to protect and defend the Constitution against “all enemies, foreign and domestic.”

She soon will hand the gavel over to whomever becomes speaker.

As is always the case, one side of the chamber stood and cheered at the appropriate time. The other side, the one occupied by Republican members, didn’t always stand, but one could see some GOP members clapping politely.

They all stood and cheered as Pelosi paid tribute to her husband, Paul, who is still recovering from injuries he suffered in that brutal attack at the couple’s SF home in what clearly was a political assault.

Pelosi called herself a “proud Democrat,” a mother, grandmother and a patriot who loves our country to the fullest. I believe in her faith and devotion to our beloved nation.

Yes, the Pelosi era in the House is about to come to an end.

May this classy and devoted public servant continue to serve her constituents with the same honor and dignity she served the nation as the speaker of the House.

GOP to take over the House

Kevin McCarthy now appears likely to become the Man of the House … of Representatives when Congress convenes its new term in January.

Republican House candidates have secured the body’s 218th GOP seat, giving Republicans the gavel.

It’s not yet a cinch that McCarthy will succeed his fellow Californian, Nancy Pelosi, as speaker. The GOP’s underwhelming performance in the 2022 midterm election — which was supposed to produce a Republican tsunami that would sweep Democrats out of office — has brought plenty of recrimination to McCarthy.

McCarthy said he’ll seek the speakership. He will have a fight on his hands, not that I really care.

Whoever takes the speaker’s gavel from Pelosi will take command of what appears to be a razor-thin majority. The projections tell us the Rs will finish with 219 seats, compared to the Ds with 216. No wiggle room, man.

The red wave never materialized. The new Congress will be fun to watch … don’t you think?

Big Liars defame election officials

The defamation of state, county and municipal election officials continues as the proponents of The Big Lie spew their rubbish.

When I hear the trash flow from the mouth of, say, Kari Lake in Arizona — the MAGA-loving Big Liar who lost the race for governor in that state — I am filled with rage on behalf of the people whose integrity she defames.

She said just the other day that Arizona election officials are incompetent and corrupt. Once again, she provides no proof of what she is alleging.

I worked with election officials during the nearly 37 years I toiled as print journalist. I did so in two states, in Oregon and Texas. To a person — be they Democrat or Republican — they were competent, filled to the brim with integrity and dedicated fully to the oaths they took to protect and defend the constitutions of the state and the nation.

They worked their tails off to ensure election integrity, whether they served the people of Clackamas County, Ore., or Jefferson, Randall or Potter County, Texas. I got to know all the county clerks whose job was to oversee elections and protect their integrity.

It simply sends my blood to a full boil when I hear tinhorn pols take pot shots at these dedicated public servants. Make no mistake about this fact: The individuals who incur the unjustified wrath of these politicians are the local folks, some of whom are elected officials themselves. Furthermore, they all take oaths of office that usually end with the phrase, ” … so help me God.”

Thus, the oaths are sacred. They are holy. They are not to be violated. Indeed, they are the same oaths the pols who accuse them of corruption themselves take.

The election deniers and MAGA types who level these baseless accusations are guilty of defaming the good character of others. They sicken me to my core.

Now … for a positive outlook on election

With all the reaction — replete with blame over who did something wrong during the midterm election — I want to take a moment or two to ponder the positive takeaways one can get from the balloting.

Democrats held off the Republican “red wave” by maintaining control of the Senate and, also importantly, by minimizing the Republican ascent to majority status in the House.

When the ballots are counted, it appears that the GOP will occupy 219 House seats, compared to 216 Democrats serving in the lower chamber. Republicans need 218 to win an outright majority. They got one more than the bare minimum.

Who deserves credit for Democrats’ stronger-than-expected showing? I suppose you can start with the abysmal quality of many GOP candidates. Some of them didn’t deserve to be nominated by their party, let alone elected to public office.

I am struck by the message that voters seemed to deliver, which is that they are weary of the conspiracy nonsense. Voters favored candidates who vowed to govern. They sought out the thoughtful candidates who promised to stop demonizing local election officials, individuals who work hard to ensure and protect the integrity of our electoral process.

The process does work. It’s not perfect. But it works. It did so again in the midterm election.

I won’t seek to assess which politicians benefited from this election. It’s easy, I suppose, to wonder whether the midterm result enhances President Biden’s chances at re-election. I won’t go there. One message, though, seems to have resonated with voters. It is that Joe Biden does not deserve blame for worldwide inflation.

If he were to shoulder that blame, then he should bask in the notion that inflation appears to be lessening. Then again, I won’t assign that credit to him, either. Global economics is far more complicated than many of the MAGA types would have you believe.

The election is over. The task now awaiting Democratic and Republican politicians alike is determining how they intend to govern with such narrow majorities in the Senate and the House. Remember that if Democrats secure 51 seats in the Senate and Republicans finish with 219 seats in the House, neither party has any room for mistakes.

Still, the midterm election ended with democracy having a good day at the polls.

’22 midterm: so much to digest

I am still trying to grasp what in the world happened this week during the 2022 midterm election.

  • Democrats were supposed to be eviscerated by Republicans. It didn’t happen.
  • First-term presidents always suffer badly during midterm elections. President Biden reportedly can’t stop smiling.
  • Republicans have vowed revenge as payback for the two impeachments leveled against the most recent GOP president. Their razor-slim House majority might get in the way.

I dare not even begin to predict what the consequences of this startling election will mean for the cause of good government. The U.S. Senate appears set to remain in slightly stronger Democratic hands. The U.S. House will turn Republican, but the GOP margin is likely to make their majority virtually unworkable.

House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy’s quest to become speaker might face some peril. Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell could face ouster if enough Senate Republicans get their dander up over the Democrats’ stunning election result.

It just boggles my mind to consider what could have happened at the polls. The election deniers by and large got the boot. Many of the MAGA acolytes faced the same fate.

I won’t necessarily buy into the notion that Americans are happy with the state of the economy, although our nation’s economic health is far better than many partisan critics have described it.

It well might be that Americans are sick and tired of the dangerous rhetoric that comes from the MAGA/election deniers within the Republican Party. That message became the centerpiece of many Republican candidates for important offices, such as governor, members of Congress, secretaries of state.

Just maybe the American electorate said, “Enough is enough!”

If that is the case, then the cause of good government has received a much-needed and necessary boost. Not a bad outcome.

Bidding farewell to nutjobs

Let us now bid a hearty and heartfelt adieu to the bevy of blowhards who sought to infect government at all levels with their toxic views about election denial and how they intend to “make America great again.”

Many of them — not all, I am sad to acknowledge — got their proverbial melons thumped by Democrats in the 2022 midterm election. They were — and are — unqualified and unfit for public office. Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania is my example du jour of the kind of nut case that had no business taking a much more qualified opponent, John Fetterman, to the distance before losing the contest for the U.S. Senate.

Oz had been selected to run as a Republican by Donald John Trump. Oz’s political credentials, simply put, do not exist. He’s gone. I hope he’s gone forever.

Trump’s fingerprints are all over the political corpses that litter the roadway to oblivion. Election denier Doug Mastriano lost his bid to become Pennsylvania governor. Another denier, Kari Lake, might win the Arizona governor’s race over a more qualified Democrat, Kelly Hobbs; then again, those results could go either way.

Americans from coast to coast have been “treated,” if that’s the right word, to the foolishness and rubbish that come from so damn many so-called Republicans these days.

Texas, where I live, has its share of GOP dipsh**s as well. I’ll single out Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who won re-election to a third term despite being indicted — just months after taking office in 2015 — for securities fraud and for showing time and again that he cannot be trusted to represent the state’s interests with competence and fairness.

So … with that I want to say “so long” to the cabal of kooks who populated our ballot. I am proud to say that none of you got my vote or my stated support on this blog.

I remain committed to the policy of good government and I long for the day when we can return to a two-party system that produces vigorous discussion and debate on issues based on truth. The Big Lie needs to die as miserable a death as possible.