How is it possible that Jim Jordan’s role in the January 6 insurrection isn’t even a topic for the House GOP?
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When Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) was asked on Sunday about Rep. Jim Jordan’s (R-OH) efforts to help overturn the results of the 2020 election and whether that should disqualify him from becoming speaker, he shrugged off the assertion. In a clip that quickly went viral, Crenshaw essentially said that if that were the measuring stick to determine who should be speaker, then the GOP would have limited options.
“A lot of them did that,” said Crenshaw of his Republican colleagues who voted not to accept Joe Biden’s victory. “If I held that grudge, I wouldn’t have friends in the Republican conference, because a lot of them did that.”
That brief exchange exposes many things that are wrong with the GOP right now.
First of all, it is highly problematic that the majority of the Republican conference want a man to become speaker who was a main propagator of the Big Lie in Congress, played a role in helping Donald Trump stage his coup (and therefore was also partially responsible for a mob storming the Capitol), and then refused to comply with a subpoena so that he would not have to testify about his level of involvement.
In other words, Jordan helped put many of their lives at risk on January 6.
And the crazy part is that this isn’t even an issue in the race for speaker.
Republicans simply don’t care at all that this happened (well, apart from worrying about the wellbeing of all of those “patriotic tourists” who are now sitting in jail for their participation in the insurrection). If Jordan fails to get the required 217 votes on Tuesday, it will not be because he is an insurrectionist, it will be because some Republicans have policy differences with him.
But it’s even worse than that.
Last week, during a closed-door meeting of Republicans, Rep. Ken Buck (CO) asked both Jordan and House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (LA) whether they would admit that Trump lost the 2020 election.
According to Buck, both of them gave evasive answers.
In an interview with MSNBC, the lawmaker later acknowledged that Republicans would probably have to pay a “political penalty for saying such a thing” because “there’s a large group of Trump followers in this country that would disagree with that.”
Essentially, what he is saying is that stating a very apparent truth will hurt you in today’s GOP.
And it’s not just the crazies who are responsible for that. It’s also people like Crenshaw, supposedly one of the more sensible Republicans and one of the “adults in the room,” who are enabling people like Trump and Jordan.
Instead of making light of the fact that his colleagues are a bunch of insurrectionists, he should do something about it, even if it would take an act of courage to do so.
However, there have only been a handful of Republicans in the Trump era who have dared to put principle over power. Most of them, like former-Rep. Liz Cheney (WY), have paid the price for doing so by either getting voted out of office or resigning… because participating in the GOP’s subversion of democracy is not what they signed up for.