Reps. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and Elise Stefanik (R-NY) will seize any opportunity at all to genuflect before the Dear Leader. And so, with an eye towards solving Donald Trump's little Fourteenth Amendment problem, they and 60 Republican co-sponsors have put forth a resolution asserting that whatever Donald Trump did on 1/6, he was not engaging in an insurrection.
It's no secret that Gaetz is a nitwit; Stefanik, a Harvard graduate, isn't, but she seems to have checked her brain when she joined the House Republican leadership. In any case, this is, if we may be blunt, a colossally stupid maneuver. It may not even come up for a vote in the House, and if it does it may not pass. And even if it does pass, it's dead on arrival in the Senate.
It is not the surefire failure that makes this colossally stupid, however. There are lots of "for show" bills that never go anywhere. No, the stupid part is that Gaetz and Stefanik (and 60 of their closest friends) are taking a very strong stand on the question of whether or not it is up to Congress to decide if a candidate (including a president) is subject to the terms of the Fourteenth Amendment. Clearly, they think it is indeed Congress' decision.
And now the problem. If you would like, you can review the article of impeachment filed against Trump prior to his second impeachment. Whether you take the opportunity to click on the link or not, we will note that the title of the article is "ARTICLE I: INCITEMENT OF INSURRECTION" and the entire text lays out the argument that Trump engaged in insurrection against the United States. That resolution was approved by a margin of 232-197 (with four not voting) in the House. And then, 57 senators (i.e., a clear majority) voted to convict. In other words, you now have a resolution saying that Trump DID NOT engage in insurrection that is not going to get backed by the Senate, and may not get backed by the House. And you have a resolution saying that Trump DID engage in insurrection that has already been backed by a clear majority of both chambers.
This is what the kiddies call a "self own." Those who favor Trump's removal from the ballot now have another excellent argument they can make, something along the lines of: "Both parties clearly agree that, if an alleged insurrectionist does not have the decency to remove themselves from the ballot, then it's up to Congress to decide. And, in the case of Trump, Congress has already made that determination. So, off he goes."
In other words, Gaetz and Stefanik aren't going to help Trump win his case, but they might just have helped him lose it. Like we said, colossally stupid. (Z)