GOP Lawmaker: It's Time to Hold Trump, and the Party Accountable

Arizona Senator Jeff Flake is making a lot of sense, in regards to how the party should be responding to President Trump.

The 2016 election saw a lot of voters walk away from the GOP. For many, the idea that a lifelong Manhattan liberal, with low impulse control would be the new face of the Republican party was too much.

For some of us, our allegiance was to conservatism, and the nomination of Donald Trump was an abandonment of conservative principles and moral standards.

In the subsequent months following the election, Trump has done far more to confirm our fears than to allay them.

If there is anything more disturbing than Trump’s constant Twitter rants, diplomatic fumbles, and tales of stirring in-fighting among his staff for his personal amusement is the lack of Republican lawmakers willing to stand up and say, “KNOCK IT OFF!”

Of course, there have been a few to speak out, but the occasional, lone voice of reason is not enough. The party needs to ban together and push back. We have equal branches of government for a reason.

Senator Flake has a warning for his colleagues in the party: It’s time to step up.

Said Flake on Sunday:

“I do think so,” Flake told CBS’s “Face the Nation” when asked if GOP leaders are complicit if they fail to call out Trump.

“I think that you know, obviously the last thing you want to do is wake up every morning and see a tweet and think, ‘I just—‘ you know, it’s tough not to just say, ‘I’m not going to respond.’ And we can’t respond to everything. But there are times when you have to stand up and say, ‘I’m sorry. This is wrong.’”

“There are truths that are self-evident. And you’ve got to stand up and call whether it’s the White House or other elected officials, to task, when they’re not doing what they should,” he said.

And he’s absolutely right. Unfortunately, there’s fear of the mob of alt-righters who seem to be steering policy, these days. Eight years of being bullied by Barack Obama’s oppressive liberalism and social justice shaming have fostered this sense of “payback time,” with scant regard to the actual well-being of the nation.

The adults have left the room, and we ended up with Trump because of it. Poor Michigan may end up with Senator Kid Rock because, after all, it’s no longer about competent, reasonable leadership, but about leading with the middle finger.

Senator Flake continued in that same vein of commonsense with a Monday morning interview with NPR:

Flake told NPR he is “very troubled” with the Republican Party.

“It seems that we’ve been compromised, but this time by different forces — those of populism and protectionism, isolationism, xenophobia and I’m concerned about how we remain a governing party with those principles,” he said.

He also said he thinks the party has become “coarser.”

“Being a conservative isn’t just adopting conservative policies,” he said. “I think it matters in terms of demeanor and comportment.”

In other words, we should hold ourselves to a higher standard than the “whataboutism” that has taken hold in our nation, and, unfortunately, in our voting booths.

Flake said he recognizes the frustrations people have, adding that President Trump “kind of spoke to that.”

“But I think as conservatives, our first obligation is to be honest with people,” he said.

And he’s not wrong. Not at all.

If the Republican party hopes to remain viable (and electable) they need to reclaim some of what it was that made them a home for conservatives for so long. Instead of the sniveling and excuses, they need to draw together and speak to what’s right, not what’s popular.

They also need to stop coddling the petulant man-baby and his Twitter fingers. The majorities in Congress and the Senate need to exert their authority as co-equal branches and press to bring Trump under control.

When he insults a world leader, slams the media, or attempts to create policy via Twitter, the reaction needs to be united and swift.

We can’t do four years, scandal-to-scandal, blunder-to-blunder. Trump doesn’t know what he’s doing, so those who do need to stop being afraid of public opinion and step up.

Flake has spoke to it, now let’s see it happen.