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Bombshell 1/6 committee revelations prove Trump was Putin in the making
With all eyes on Ukraine, Democrats should repeatedly make the connection, and shame the GOP
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The January 6th select committee has now told a federal judge in a bombshell filing that Donald Trump committed several crimes in trying to overturn the 2020 election and keep himself installed as president, engaging in a “criminal conspiracy” with others:
In a major release of its findings, filed in federal court late Wednesday, the committee suggested that its evidence supported findings that Trump himself violated multiple laws by attempting to prevent Congress from certifying his defeat.
“The Select Committee also has a good-faith basis for concluding that the President and members of his Campaign engaged in a criminal conspiracy to defraud the United States,” the committee wrote in a filing submitted in U.S. District Court in the Central District of California.
Meanwhile, just two nights ago Republicans stood up and applauded thunderously when President Biden, in the first 12 minutes of his State of the Union address, condemned Russia’s Vladimir Putin, an authoritarian who is now brutally invading the sovereign nation of Ukraine.
The GOP had apparently realized it could no longer stay silent or play footsie with Putin — placating Trump, who sucked up to Putin during his entire presidency, after Russia interfered in the U.S. election on behalf of Trump — and could no longer risk looking like they were apologists for an attack on Western democracy.
The Republican senators’ and House members’ standing ovation for Biden came just a week after they mostly stayed quiet as Trump called Putin’s moves “genius,” “wonderful” and “smart.”
So their newfound moral compass doesn’t in any way cover how they enabled Trump, who encouraged Putin, who is now causing the largest war in Europe in decades, targeting civilians and threatening an all-out nuclear holocaust.
The attack on democracy on January 6th that Trump inspired was motivated by the same grandiosity and lust for power that is motivating Putin. This is what authoritarian do, in addition to trying to keep themselves in power even if it means promoting delusional lies, rigging elections and engaging in violence.
The GOP cannot be let off the hook — or allowed to reframe their recent history as they now, desperately, try to play catch-up in condemning Putin. They spent years allowing Trump to create a world in which Putin was able to do what he’s embarking on right now. Trump attacked NATO, even pushed for dissolving it. He vilified European allies, driving a wedge between them and the U.S., while refusing to condemn Putin for interfering in the U.S. election. He even had secret meetings with Putin.
And Trump put Ukraine in grave danger, viewing the long-time U.S. ally as an enemy, blackmailing President Zelensky, refusing to send weapons to fight Russia while demanding dirt (that did not exist) on his opponent, Joe Biden. Trump even excused Putin for invading Crimea and said he could accept it and could lift sanctions against Russia. And let’s not forget how his former campaign manager, convicted felon Paul Manafort (who Trump eventually pardoned), worked for the pro-Russian Ukraine forces, and got the GOP to take out of its 2016 platform a pledge to send weapons and aide to Ukraine.
With all of the focus right now on Ukraine and Putin’s actions, the January 6th committee revelations remind us not only of the relationship between Trump and Putin, but how Trump was just like Putin: Attempting to stay in power, and amass more power, as long as possible and by any means necessary.
As the GOP now wants to look like it is fervently against Russian aggression as polls show almost 90% of Americans condemn Russia and support sanctions, Trump’s adoration of Putin must be rubbed in their faces.
They must be asked about it consistently by media. And Democrats have to hit them hard, using it in ads, laying the blame for emboldening Putin squarely at their feet. Show GOP House members praising Trump and the Big Lie, and then show Trump praising Putin and his Big Lies.
And underscore how, as all eyes are focused on the attack on democracy abroad, the GOP allowed —and still excuses — an attack on democracy right here in America.