Will Trump’s Outrages ever Break the Camel’s Back?

camel straw Flickr The.Rohit_.jpg
I commented yesterday that criticism of Trump’s softness toward white supremacists and Nazis by key Republicans was an encouraging sign of America’s health.

I’ve gotten pushback, pointing out that many of these same Republicans blasted Trump for denigrating John McCain’s war record. “This time Trump went too far,” optimists on the Left pronounced. But Trump thrived.

Then Republicans blasted him for claiming that Federal Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel could not judge fairly because he “happens to be, we believe, Mexican.” (Curiel was born in Indiana.) “This time, etc”, we said. But Trump continued to thrive.

The last straw was when he belittled Gold Star parents Khizr and Gazala Khan. Now, we said, “now he’s really crossed the line.” Many Republicans agreed. Trump thrived.
Then Republicans jumped all over him for the Access Hollywood tapes, in which he told Billy Bush, “And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab ’em by the pussy. You can do anything.” Now Republican criticism boiled over, with Republican women especially furious over his casual admission of repeated sexual assaults. Trump continued to thrive.

And then came the really, no fooling, last straw. In the final debate with Hillary Clinton, Trump refused to say he’d accept the result of the imminent election. Days later he clarified his position: “I will totally accept the results of this great and historic presidential election — if I win.”

That outraged people of every political stripe, challenging, as it did, the very foundation of the American experiment. “He’s finished now,” we all thought.

Then he won. Now he’s defended torch-bearing, Jew-baiting white supremacists. Has he finally gone too far, really, really?

Importantly the CEO-titans of corporate America—Republicans, nearly all—who he recruited as his advisors abandoned him today. Beyond that, Congressional Republicans are not going to bring him down now. No impeachment under this Congress. But the weight of these moral outrages will accumulate with some—I hope, many—of his supporters. They’ll be less and less likely to act as his handmaidens in the Congress, and if it comes to that, more likely to support his eventual impeachment.

We’re far from there, but not as far as we were yesterday.

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