Congressman Mark Sanford (R-S.C.) lost in the Republican primary last night to Katie Arrington, just hours after Trump endorsed her late in the race. Arrington responded to the win by giving credit where due: Via Raw Story.
In her address to supporters, Katie Arrington proclaimed, We are the party of Donald J. Trump,” tweeted Bloomberg reporter Greg Giroux. “Like I said in the beginning it isn’t a me, it is a we moment.”
Sanford’s loss rids Congress of one of the very few Republican voices from whom one might hear occasional mild criticism of Trump’s behavior.
Joe Scarboraugh wailed that the results demonstrated the the GOP no longer exists as a political party, and whatever remains is nothing more than some sort of personality cult:
“If you want to know where the Republican Party is right now, Mark Sanford survives career-ending, what should have been a career-ending scandal,” Scarborough said. “As governor, lies about going on the Appalachian Trail, becomes the butt of late-night jokes. Nobody said that guy would ever be elected back to Congress, and he won. Two years later he votes with Trump maybe 95 percent of the time, 87% percent, says one or two things about Trump that people don’t like.”
Because Sanford would be critical of Trump’s behavior and antics, one could get confused as to Sanford’s political leanings, however he was a staunch member of the Freedom Caucus. He literally lost because he said a very few mild things about Trump that Trump supporters didn’t like, and that was enough.
Trump, for his part, couldn’t help but get involved on the side of punishing someone who might speak out against him, tweeting just hours prior to the primary:
My political representatives didn’t want me to get involved in the Mark Sanford primary thinking that Sanford would easily win – but with a few hours left I felt that Katie was such a good candidate, and Sanford was so bad, I had to give it a shot. Congrats to Katie Arrington!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 13, 2018
“So bad” in this case means “he has criticized me.”
This danger to the country increases with each of these “victories” and Scarboraugh recognizes it. When “cult followings” replace politics, raw emotion replaces rational thought, the rule of law suffers and violence near always results. Think of history’s great dictators and their “cult-like” status, Comparisons always start with Hitler, who didn’t tolerate criticism very well, either. Saddam Hussein, even Dear Lead Kim Jung Un, these are the cultist leaders we never knew to worry about in the United States.
There has never been a war fought between two democracies. Groups of people tend not to want to war on other groups of people, but a cult of personality will follow that personality into terrible abuses. I fear for violent reprisals against Robert Mueller. What happens when an entire political movement defines itself by the personality of one man is met with the cold hard truth that the man is not who he says he is?
This isn’t suppose to happen here.
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