PBS Pair RIPS Republican Party as Fractured and Flattened by Trump

September 24th, 2022 7:15 PM

On Friday's PBS NewsHour, Washington Post columnist Karen Tumulty and New York Times columnist David Brooks took turns dismissing Kevin McCarthy's "Commitment to America" platform for the midterm elections. The GOP can't agree on anything, and as Tumulty put it, "Donald Trump keeps creeping into the news." As if Team Biden and their media enablers have nothing to do with that! 

Anchor Judy Woodruff played dueling soundbites of McCarthy introducing his plan and Biden slamming it, and then asked Tumulty "What is going on here?" We heard the usual liberal mantra: this isn't a referendum on Biden or the Democrats.

TUMULTY: Normally a midterm election is a referendum on the president, but this one's different because people are looking at what the Republican agenda itself could be. In part because of the abortion decision, in part because Donald Trump is in the news constantly, and so, yes, house Republicans are looking for something to talk about that are not those two things, but this package that was unveiled today, and it was meant to be sort of an echo of the 1994 Contract with America, was not specific at all. It was basically a bunch of talking points, and I think that among other things reflects how fractured the Republicans in the House are. I mean, getting a majority of them to agree on anything is not only difficult in the campaign, but it is going to be difficult for Kevin McCarthy or whoever the speaker is if in fact the Republicans get power, or get the majority again in this midterm election.

WOODRUFF: How fractured are they?

BROOKS: In 2020, they had no platform at all, so I take this as a step forward.

TUMULTY: They did. Their platform was anything Donald Trump wants.

That's not exactly true. With all the COVID lockdowns, Trump and the party decided to stick to the 2016 platform and not create a committee to start a new one. Then they slammed the media for mocking the plan. Brooks suggested

BROOKS: It is becoming a party that is much more hostile to corporations, much more welcoming of an entitlement state, the welfare state, Social Security and all that, much more willing to use government to help working-class folks, but it takes a while for a party to migrate. I think they are migrating, but a lot of people like Kevin McCarthy are part of the old party. There are some people like Paul Ryan, the old speaker, who were part of the old party. You have people part of that business party and then you have the working party, and they do not see eye to eye a lot because this is a party changing his colors in rapid form.

Woodruff asked if this liberal dynamic – this is a referendum on MAGA Republicans more than Biden – would continue over the next seven weeks or so. With eyes opening wide, Tumulty said “One of the problems for the Republicans is Donald Trump keeps creeping back into the news!

Then they discussed all the investigations the Democrats are pushing on Trump, pretending as usual that he isn't facing a Democrat in New York state, a Democrat in Fulton County, Georgia, a House Democrat committee on January 6, and a Democrat Department of Justice. 

The taxpayer-funded "news" show can't acknowledge that it's the Democrats who keep dragging Trump back into the news, including desperate measures like the FBI raiding Trump's home in some kind of crusade for the National Archives. Democrats clearly figure that a constant whir of Trump scandals will help Democrats avoid a red wave in the midterms. The media will always help with the constant whir. 

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