Maybe evangelicals forgot to tell their favorite libertine that it's only in heaven that "the last shall be first, and the first last." But at some point, the party of Donald J. Trump stopped believing that it's up to voters to decide who gets to govern.
In Georgia, meanwhile, a new law that Gov. Brian Kemp signed this May makes it possible for a commission appointed by the governor, lieutenant governor, state House speaker and a state Senate committee on assignments to investigate and remove prosecutors they see as failing to properly enforce laws. When Kemp signed it, he said it was intended to rein in "far-left prosecutors."
Georgia state Sen. Colton Moore will not, it seems, be able to immediately defund or derail the efforts of Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, who is prosecuting Trump for pressuring Kemp and others to overturn his 2020 loss in their state.
But like other radicals, Moore is still warning that extreme measures are justified because that's the only way to avoid the civil war that he and his fellow extremists miss no opportunity to incite.
"If we don't" keep Willis from doing her job by prosecuting Trump, Moore reasoned, "our constituencies are gonna be fighting it in the streets. Do you want a civil war? I don't want a civil war. I don't want to have to draw my rifle. I want to make this problem go away with my legislative means of doing so."
In Alabama, lawmakers who think elections shouldn't necessarily have the consequences intended by voters not only drew an illegal congressional map, but then refused to respond to the federal judges who told them to fix it.
Even when told to try again, they couldn't bring themselves to create a second majority-Black district in the state, or anything close to that.
In response, the three-judge panel said in a new ruling that it is "deeply troubled" by Alabama's antidemocratic refusal: "The law requires the creation of an additional district that affords Black Alabamians, like everyone else, a fair and reasonable opportunity to elect candidates of their choice. The 2023 Plan plainly fails to do so." Just as intended.
Across the country, the party of honest Abe has become the party of performance artists like Vivek Ramaswamy. The former national security party has allowed Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville to block military promotions for the last eight months. The former law and order party promises to pardon "a large portion" of cop-beating Jan. 6 insurrectionists.
In Missouri, all of the most prominent members of the DJT Party continue to undermine our democracy with the lie that won't die, that Trump wuz robbed in 2020.
If you really thought you won, why would you give up on winning at the polls ever again? If you believed in either the idea or ideals of America, would an ally be on TV saying, as Mike Huckabee recently did, that unless you win next time, "it is going to be the last American election that will be decided by ballots rather than bullets."
Nice country you got there, and it'd be a shame if anything were to happen to it.
The problem underneath all of this is not that the boy who was never held accountable for any lie he ever told or con he ever sold is now, as a 77-year-old adolescent, testing our system as never before. It's that the former Daddy Party collapsed more spectacularly than I would have believed possible instead of ever standing up to him either.
I used to think its adherents were better than this, and maybe still harbor some fumes of hope that this whole sad devolution ends Capra style, with the justices Trump put on the Supreme Court disqualifying him from office.
But would Josh Hawley then admit that he knew all along who our most cynical president was and was not? We all know the answer. Which is why so many defectors from the old Republican Party have realized that only voting Trump's many courtiers out of office can save us from Trumpism.