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GOP has sold its soul

RICK ELIA

New Castle

If character is judged by what we do when nobody’s watching, then legacies are determined by what we do when everybody’s watching.

And in the near future everybody will be watching when, if as expected, the U.S. House of Representatives impeaches Donald Trump, the most corrupt, incompetent and unfit president in history, and his case goes to trial before the U.S. Senate.

It will be then that an entire political party – the GOP — that has sold its soul to a devil for tax cuts, deregulation and judges they think will rule in favor of hate, fear and the rich over common sense, decency and the rest of us, will, in the course of reaching a judgement on Trump, experience its own judgement day, too.

That will include our own Pennsylvania Republican U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey.

Toomey is a Trump enabler and has already told The Hill that the president’s actions concerning Ukraine consisted of “errors of judgement” and that he doesn’t believe his conduct has been impeachable.

He made this decision before there had been even a word of public testimony given in the House hearings. Do you think he took much, if any, time to read the thousands of pages of testimony from the witnesses’ depositions that have been released?

“Errors of judgement?”

When a president sets up a shadow foreign policy track; uses unsubstantiated slurs to justify removing a by-the-books ambassador who wouldn’t stand for his shenanigans; appoints a trio of hand-picked “amigos” to take over the process; and gives his attorney powers that should only belong to the State Department, that’s not an “error of judgement,” that’s a plot.

When, with all this in place, the president and his team attempt to extort the president of Ukraine to announce investigations designed to damage a political rival and to defend a foreign country – Russia – that attacked our elections, in part by withholding desperately needed military aid

Ukraine needs to defend itself from an invasion by – no surprise here – Russia, thus endangering our national security and the lives of innocent Ukrainians, that’s not an “error of judgement,” that’s a crime.

And when the president’s administration tries to hide the whistleblower’s complaint; the president orders anyone who will listen to stonewall and not cooperate with a legal Congressional investigation; and he and his supporters engage in a campaign of lies, phony process questions, witness smearing and intimidation, and calls to violate federal law by outing the whistleblower, that’s not an “error of judgement.”

That’s a coverup.

On just about every big vote Toomey has been there for the president, refusing to put his country ahead of his party and his own ambitions. It looks like that’s going to be the case again in the most important vote of Toomey’s career.

While Trump is the featured performer in our current American nightmare, he only gets to play that role because of the inaction, enabling and outright servitude of the Republican Party.

If the evidence continues to play out as it has, we’re going to find out if Toomey is representing our best interests or his own. Whether our state’s and country’s futures are more important than his future in politics, lobbying or whatever other endeavors he pursues to make money.

Trump may be the tumor we see, but Toomey and the Republicans are the cancer that feeds its growth. Toomey’s got one more chance at redemption. The stench of the Trump presidency is hanging on him, and history is waiting.

We’ll be watching, and we won’t forget.

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