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Thursday, December 19, 2019

IS THE GOP BEING BLACKMAILED?

You can’t deny the change is stark. Looking at the Republican party when Donald Trump first came down the escalator and announced he was running for President of The United States. The Republican establishment was clear Donald J. Trump was not to be taken seriously. How that has changed is not just startling, but is suspect and as time went on, perhaps sinister.
In a crowded field of candidates for the Republican nomination Trump stood out for his unabashed willingness to sling insults, name calling and vulgarity. Portrayed as a successful businessman on a reality television program and through marketing from the TRUMP Organization, he was an attention  and ratings goldmine for media. In an election year that was assumed to be wrapped up with the election of the first female president, Hillary Rodham Clinton, on the heels of the first African-American president the media lavishly covered Trump. One thing was clear though; the Republican party saw Trump as a side show with no chance of winning, either the nomination or general election.

With a talent for showmanship and perhaps a nothing to lose attitude Trump attracted crowds and media attention. His attacks on Republican opponents were crude and visceral resonating with a portion of the voting public which had become cynical of the established political cast. Through this early period the feelings amongst the Republican party and it's major donors remained the same; Trump was a Side Show. Even as established candidates dropped out and Trump rose the message was the same. Candidates and others in  the Republican party stood up and attacked Trump as a non Republican who was wholly unqualified to run for, never mind be president. He was for certain seen as and portrayed as a candidate who had no chance at winning against Hillary Clinton.

Republican candidates were not able to counter the insult laced, even childish attacks Trump leveled against long standing members of the Republican mainstream. For certain they were not prepared for the way expanding portions of the base were responding to him. They were likely, early on at least, unaware of the backup Trump was getting from trolls and bots through Facebook and other social media platforms.  Those bots and trolls coordinated and crafted by Russia, according to the entire American counter-intelligence community.

Well established candidate after well established candidate fell. The now familiar pattern of campaign rallies carried on as did the name calling and childish attacks and, as time went on, so did an increasing amount of mention of Russia. It was a faint murmur at first, growing louder over time. Growing softer over the same period was Republican push back on Candidate Trump. Candidates like Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz who took verbal beatings dropped out of the race, eventually having meetings with Trump and becoming staunch, almost religious supporters. As the campaign pressed toward the nominating convention the TRUMP candidacy was assured, the softening tones toward Russia were louder including resolutions favouring Russia and the Republican Party was now firmly Trump's.

The question remains how did the political outlier knock out Republican heavyweights and subdue dissent so completely? Is it so impossible for Trump to have gotten the same help with the RNC that he asked for and received with the DNC email? Moreover, would it make sense for the Russians, while looking for an advantage in disrupting the election to only hack one of the major parties? Having even put in a useful idiot, if the party won't conceal around the useful idiot and protect him, there is only so much he can do.

There has been ample reporting of Russian money making its way to Republican candidates and to Super Pac in support of Trump and other Republicans. There has also been reporting of Russian money making its way to Republican  Candidates after being funnelled through the NRA. These are serious considerations when trying to find a pattern of coercion around the control of money. Does control of money, alone make a case for understanding the complete collapse of resistance to Donald Trump within the Republican party? Further, than the lack of resistance, what accounts for the blind following of factless conjecture and outright fiction presented as reasoning for Trump remaining in office?

Some represent Trump's base as the power that he seems to hold over the party, but is it realistic to look at their beliefs and assume they would run to the Democrats if Trump was removed from office, or at least given proper bipartisan oversight? It seems, or, in times where reality was a concept, seemed hard to picture a scenario where the Republicans lost this base support. So the question is; “Is there enough evidence to require an investigation into the possible BLACKMAILING of the GOP?”