The drunken game of musical chairs has ended, and creationist/election denier/bigot/Trump vassal Mike Johnson has won. It was a revealing game, because this should have been an opportunity to show off the very best of their party, the people who would represent the Republican vision of the future. Instead, we got a peek at what they think is great, and got serving of sewage sludge.
Steve Scalise, white supremacist and anti-Semite? Jim Jordan, notorious enabler of sexual assault? Tom Emmer, dullard and heir to Michele Bachmann’s electorate? They finally settle on a low-key (most people don’t know how awful he is yet) Trump stooge. This is their best? He won because he was a cipher!
Finally, on Tuesday night, House Republicans picked the name “Johnson” out of the phone book. He was acceptable because he was unknown on Capitol Hill, even to many Republicans. During Wednesday’s roll-call vote on the House floor, Kay Granger (R-Tex.), chair of the Appropriations Committee, rose and mistakenly voted for “Mike Rogers” — the chairman of the Armed Services committee — before correcting herself to Mike Johnson. Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.), in a statement congratulating the new speaker, called him Jim Johnson. Susan Collins of Maine, top Republican on the Senate Appropriations Committee, told CNN’s Lauren Fox Wednesday morning that she’d have to Google him.
Johnson’s anonymity was his greatest asset. In just his seventh year in Congress, he hadn’t been around long enough, or had enough power, to make enemies. He is the least-experienced speaker in a century and a half. But he has also been an avid election denier, Trump defender and promoter of the deep-state conspiracy, which appealed to the MAGA hard-liners who had defeated McCarthy, Scalise and Emmer.
The Republican party is fucking done, or the United States is done, a failed state. The next election has become even more important, because we have to purge these losers from the government.