Eight years ago Will Saletan said, “The GOP is a failed state. Donald Trump is its warlord.” There’s probably no short summary, phrase or aphorism I’ve repeated more times on TPM. Because it’s that good. Today we’re seeing another permutation and illustration of that enduring reality.
Yesterday and today the GOP went back to the well to find a completely new set of Speaker candidates and, they hoped, a new Speaker designee. After multiple rounds, Rep. Tom Emmer of Minnesota was elected as the caucus’s choice. He then asked for a roll call of who would actually vote for him on the House floor. He came up more than twenty votes short.
Was there a writers’ strike on this new episode of the Caucus series? Because this sounds like a crib from an episode that ran the weekend before last when just the same thing happened to Steve Scalise. Sure enough within an hour or so we’re now hearing chatter that only Rep. Mike Johnson (LA), the guy who lost in the final vote, could get to 217. So only the guy who just lost can hope to win. Got it? Again, it’s a script cribbed from ten days ago.