Tuesday, June 15, 2021

What we're all getting wrong

What we’re all getting wrong writes Steve Schmidt from The Lincoln Project (via email).

“Everyone is still making an assumption that there are these two parties…but that’s not the fight we’re in … There is no bipartisanship anymore.”

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We’re all getting this wrong, … , and I wanted to make sure you saw my note from yesterday. It’s too important to miss.

You have probably heard by now that it is very unlikely that HR1, the federal bill to protect voting rights, has any chance of passing the Senate. Joe Manchin is unwilling to get rid of the filibuster because he is still hopeful of a bipartisan solution.

This is not to blame Joe Manchin personally. But it’s clear that he, too many of his colleagues, and too many in the media have read the situation completely wrong.

There is no bipartisanship anymore. The GOP of old - and the idea that both parties come together and negotiate to get things done - is dead. It doesn’t exist anymore.

Matthew Dowd called it the GOP’s “black mold problem” and made it clear: you do not negotiate with black mold. You have to rip out everything it touched and rebuild. And if you deny it exists…and breathe it in…it makes you sick.

What we all have to realize is that we are falling into a trap. The media, Democratic leadership, former Republican leaders - we are mistakenly believing this is still a two party system, and we’re missing the point.

Everyone is still making an assumption that there are these two parties…but that’s not the fight we’re in. There is only the Democratic Party, and on the other side is an authoritarian movement fueled by Donald Trump. That movement has grown to hold so much power in what used to be the Republican party that it has purged former leaders and left them fearful for the future.

So when we mistakenly think “bipartisanship” is the solution, who are we negotiating with? Either those held hostage by the black mold - or the hostage takers. Neither is a tenable solution for our democracy.

This is no longer a choice between two parties. You’re either part of the authoritarian movement and support their treasonous activities or you are against it. This is what we are tasked to do. You, me, the Lincoln Project, and every American who wants to stand up for our democracy.

And it’s also important to remember that many of our fellow citizens have been lied to. And they believe those lies. But those people, they are not the enemy. In order to help them overcome this and wake up to what is happening, we need to offer those people the truth.

This is no longer a political fight. It is an existential threat to the future of our democracy.

Our role in this is simple. We need to deliver the truth to the people who have been lied to. And every time that someone uses bipartisanship as a reason to negotiate with the black mold, we have to call it out. We need to make every American realize what the stakes are not just next November, but every time someone repeats the Big Lie or cries bipartisanship.

The truth matters.

The more that Marjorie Taylor Green takes the mic and shows the rot in a Republican party fully co-opted by Trump, she proves it is in fact now a movement of autocrats who seek to destroy democracy.

This is bigger than Trump. This autocratic movement will not implode while we stand by and wait. We have to take action now because it is much larger than that. If these people regain the House and the Senate, how much further do you think they’ll go?

We have to stop the spread and we can’t do it alone. Talk to your neighbors. Reach out in your community. We have to start having these conversations before it’s too late.

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