Under President Donald Trump, the Republican Party is continuing to struggle to gain significant amounts of support outside of their already established base. In a recent appearance on MSNBC, actor Jeff Daniels shared his take on the GOP’s latest flailing, insisting that it’s largely founded on one topic — racism. The hatred of those who dared be something other than straight white men has long boiled under the surface, but with the rise of Trump, it’s gotten a new green light to come roaring to the forefront, with Trump promising a return to American “greatness” — meaning going back in the past, to when things were simpler for white racists.
‘At the end of the day, aside form yeah I don’t want to pay taxes, it’s race. It’s race. This is about the Republican Party — or a wing of it — going: “This is our last chance to save the party, and if we don’t, it’s the end of the Republican Party,” and the only way they can do that is to tap the race button and say “go ahead, it’s okay,” and he did, and they did, and that was the only card they had left to play and they played it, and they aren’t going to go quietly.’
Actor Jeff Daniels eviscerates the Republican Party on MSNBC, stating that they used racism to save their party and are showing cowardice in their refusal to stand up to Trump. Appreciate him using his platform to speak out. This is ?. pic.twitter.com/4C23NTbcA1
— Adam Best (@adamcbest) May 20, 2019
Daniels went on to slam the “cowardice” of those in the Republican Party who have refused to stand up to the rise of Donald Trump and his supporters, pointing out that the behavior of figures like Bob Corker, Jeff Flake, and other Trump opponents hasn’t been courage but instead more designed to get themselves jobs outside of politics.
There has been a glaring lack of national or even lower level Republican leaders who have made any substantive push to reel in the president’s behavior, even when he’s not just spouted racism but flouted the law. Only recently did the first and still only Republican member of Congress say that the obstruction of justice outlined in the final report from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation warrants impeaching Trump, and that Congressman — Michigan’s Justin Amash — has already faced harsh, direct criticism from the president, who called him a “loser.”
Outside of the namecalling, Trump’s continued policy platform has been founded on exactly what Daniels is talking about. He continues to push for a harsh confrontation of asylum seekers arriving at the southern border to the point of reportedly pushing for a border wall to be painted black and have spikes on it so it would be hot in summer and pose an extra physical hazard. There’s a glaring lack of evidence, however, for the claim that undocumented immigrants pose a special criminal threat to the United States. They’re arrested at lower rates than native born Americans.
Trump’s certainly still going on and on though. In the past, when celebrities have countered his platform, he’s lashed out like an animal backed into a corner, suggesting, for instance, that actor Robert de Niro had sustained some kind of brain injuries and that NBC’s Saturday Night Live should be taken off the air. A similar attack on Daniels would not be out at all out of character although you’d hope for something more from a president of the United States.
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