Reviews | Senate Republicans miss chance to win majority

In Georgia and Missouri, GOP Senate candidates have a planeload of baggage, including substantial allegations of domestic violence, though they deny wrongdoing. In Ohio, a duel has erupted between JD Vance and Josh Mandel to determine who appeals to MAGA the most. In other cases, Republicans have been unable to persuade their favorite recruits to run (for example, Vermont Governor Phil Scott and former Senator Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, Governor of Arizona Doug Ducey).

But arguably more damaging than poor candidate selection and lukewarm fundraising, self-inflicted wounds from the candidates’ own mouths provide a steady stream of freebies to Democrats eager to run on the “At least we try, but the other guys are crazy” a message.

For starters, Republicans such as the unctuous MAGA Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) have been quick to suggest that President Biden’s impeachment is in the cards if Republicans regain the House and Senate. “Yeah, I think there’s a chance of that happening, whether it’s warranted or not,” he said memorably.

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So if chaos and more acrimony is your speed, definitely vote Republican. They will not be beset by war, pandemics, economic turmoil and dozens of other critical issues that should occupy their time. Instead, prepare for a spurt of wild accusations about the president and his family.

Then, late last month, what could have been the worst political blunder in recent political history happened: Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) rolled out a plan to raise taxes by $100 million. ‘Americans and let Social Security and Medicare expire in five years. . Plus, it apparently aims to ban abortion nationwide and dictate what each school teaches students about race. (Why else put these elements into an 11-point plan for the Senate?) He managed to combine the worst Republican economic ideas with the most abusive conceptions of government.

And now Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) — purveyor of some of the most egregious coronavirus misinformation, racist rhetoric and Russian propaganda — has confessed that Republicans still want to repeal the Affordable Care Act. . (Yes, they tried it when they had control of both houses and the White House, but John McCain dismissed that unpopular idea.) To the millions of Americans who have benefited from subsidized health insurance premiums, the message of Johnson amounts to: Bad luck.

Well, you say, all of these wacky projects would be vetoed by Biden. That’s true, but think of the dozens of ways Republicans could pursue their ends — from shutting down government to funding Obamacare operations (as they did when Biden’s predecessor was in office). Non-stop obstruction. Absurd investigations. No judge or executive candidate has been confirmed. We would watch every Republican vying for the 2024 nomination try to outdo their rivals as the goofiest and most radical candidate.

Plus, what all of this tells us is that Republicans have no idea how to fix the problems we actually have. Where is the inflation plan? The plan for energy or child poverty or housing or really anything that the federal government can really influence? In truth, Republicans view government not as a vehicle for solving problems, but as a stage for performative politics, which, in the case of those courting the MAGA base, invariably includes long monologues laced with xenophobia (Ai I mentioned that Rick Scott wants to bring back the border wall and name it after the instigator of the January 6 riot?), racism, schemes to invade family privacy and invasions of the autonomy of women.

Scott, Johnson and Cruz could end up in many Democratic ads. These three and their fellow MAGA-friendly senators have made it clear to us in no uncertain terms that they are extremists, determined to return the country to the nightmarish Trump years. If the voters returned control of the Senate to them, poisonous politics and chaos would be the order of the day. You can’t say you weren’t warned.

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