We are surprised, stunned, and deeply saddened. A New Talking Point From the Pro-Trump Fringe: A new line of punditry is bubbling up among the president’s followers online: It was a positive thing that the Russians hacked the 2016 election.
Another pundit writes,
Hard-core Trump supporters are beginning to argue that even if Russia did attack the American electoral system, it was actually a good thing because it helped Donald Trump get elected.
That last argument has not yet filtered up to more mainstream Republican figures, but give it some time. When Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III closes his investigation and presents all his evidence (and more indictments, surely), no one will really be surprised to hear Republican members of Congress and prominent conservative media figures saying that it all worked out for the best because Hillary Clinton isn’t president, and we should just move on. …
We can speculate on exactly why Trump has been so eager to become Putin’s flunky; it’s obviously a complicated story with roots that go back decades. But what about the rest of the GOP? …
It may be because they’ve convinced themselves that no tactic is too repugnant, no alliance is too distasteful, and no moral compromise is too loathsome when you’re serving the lofty goal of keeping Democrats from power. Or it may be that they’re terrified that their rabid base will decide that they are insufficiently devoted to the cult of Trump. Whatever the reasons, they’ve traveled a long way down this road already, and it doesn’t look like they’re turning back.
Well, número uno, gentle people, please bear in mind that empty suited Republican congressmen were not the first folks in human history to think that the ends justify the means.
Número dos, I hope you all detected the irony in the first sentence of this post, wherein, with tongue in cheek, I declared myself shocked and deeply saddened to learn that many in the Republican base would consciously embrace Putin to achieve their social and political ends. It is highly regrettable. But if it is surprising to you in July, 2018, then you have not been paying attention.
Número tres, this thing hasn’t yet fully run its course. A big chunk of the slowly sinking Republican base will indeed embrace Putin openly. Maybe as many as half of them. Maybe as many as two thirds.
But a big minority of the base will not be willing to go there. When that happens, group one is going to try—probably, successfully—to read group two out of the party.
And the Republican Party will just fall apart.
Couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch of guys.