Republicans: Stop playing defense!

It's time for Republicans to wake up and stop playing defense!  The weeks leading up to and the actual indictment of Donald Trump show just how little we have learned about the progressive takeover of our media and legal system.

It is beyond frustrating to see even conservative media parrot the liberal talking point that this is about a hush money payment to a stripper (we even use those same words) and not first about a bad-faith stretch of the law by a political activist masquerading as a prosecutor.  Even the Wall Street Journal headline read "Trump Indicted over Hush Money."  It is catchier than "radical prosecutor stretches criminal law to create a new theory that extends bookkeeping misdemeanors committed too long ago to warrant punishment."  Because conservatives like to explain things and give logic to their arguments, we lose the public in trying to dissect the nuances rather than attacking the brazen abuses.  We need to stop putting everyone to sleep without compromising our values of being intellectually honest with facts, rule of law, and history. 

The frustration is the reinforcement of the intended tie of Trump to the phrase "hush money" rather than a focus on Manhattan district attorney Alvin Bragg, his blood-in-the-water political motives, and putting himself above the rule of law.  We all know that "nobody is above the law," but our lead-in should be "nobody is below the law."  Even the former FBI director, Jim Comey, said that no reasonable prosecutor would go after a presidential candidate who committed obscure records-based crimes.  Who someone is doesn't justify warping the law. 

Make this about the party who supports a rogue prosecutor, crafting new law, refusing to prosecute truly heinous crimes, and his history of political actions, including his campaign promise to convict Donald Trump.  We now know that Bragg has woven the flimsiest of indictments — thin threads of a series of record-keeping misdemeanors based on mere restatement of the same underlying facts, strung together to create a felony that even he cannot name or even define.  Calling him "Soros-backed" does not go far enough.  Change the lead from "Hush Money Payment" to "Banana Republic Activist Prosecutor."

And wake up to the steady rewriting of our legal system. 

When pundits throw out the warning about setting a precedent — that liberals should worry when the "shoe is on the other foot" — the joke is on conservatives.  Both sides know that those who respect the rule of law generally do not abuse it for politics, leaving liberals safe from ideological attack.  It also assumes conservatives will ever take control of our institutions again.

A dramatic change in our justice system and the concept of justice itself is already underway.  The indictment juxtaposed with the chilling and utter lack of respect for the First Amendment at Stanford law school a few weeks ago (and Yale Law School last year) forewarns of this.  To think Bragg and his ilk are mere Soros-backed rogue activists is not taking into account that hundreds of our elite-advantaged future lawyers already see the law as activism and defined by relativism, feelings, positions in society, and factors other than the written law itself.  Social and political ends, rather than the logical application of rules, facts, and evidence, determine the law and decision-making.  If that is so, then justice will be only unique to the person and never measured by true and established standards.  And if they can make up anything to put away any one, then no person is guaranteed any protection under this new form of law.

The only way we can mount an effective offense is to recognize that Republicans are the only guardians of the rule of law, and that trumps any differences we have within our party.  The indictment is so flimsy that even NeverTrump Republicans are coming to the defense of the former president.  For once, we have a chance to mount a unified offense, as long as we stay focused.

The threat to Republicans is not Trump, but a Democrat party that has embraced legal activism as a means to political ends.  If we fail to keep our legal system intact (the greatest in human history), then it won't matter what kind of Republican we call ourselves, since we will be done winning elections.  It is a long time until primary season, so make the headlines about them, not us.

Image: Ninian Reid via Flickr, CC BY 2.0 (cropped).

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