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Biden: ‘We Must End This Uncivil War.’ Here’s What It Would Look Like.

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Over the past quarter-century, from the impeachment of Bill Clinton through the two impeachments of Donald Trump, American politics has been consumed with viciousness. The most striking line in President Joe Biden’s Inaugural Address was his call to restore mutual respect to public life: “We must end this uncivil war that pits red against blue.”

I don’t expect this to happen. In fact, I’d be stunned if it did. But before we simply give up on this hope as a feeble gesture or an antiquated delusion, it is worth thinking about what it would take to fulfill it.

“Unity” does not mean consensus. Democratic government is built on the premise of disagreement. Biden recognized that in his speech, telling Trump voters, “To all those who did not support us, let me say this: Hear me out as we move forward. Take a measure of me and my heart. If you still disagree, so be it. That’s democracy.”

What unity means, or ought to mean, is a politics that allows for public debate in practical and measured terms. Under Clinton and Barack Obama, Republican opposition spiraled almost immediately into an existential rage: The Clinton deficit-reduction plan would destroy the economy; Obama’s economic stimulus and health-care reform would trigger a Greece-like hyperinflationary spiral, an Ayn Rand nightmare come to life.

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Unity does not mean consensus. Photo: ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images

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Click the link below for the article:

https://nymag.com/intelligencer/article/biden-inaugural-address-end-this-uncivil-war-unity-possible.html

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They’ve Been Calling for Bloodshed the Whole Time Some on the right have supported violence for years now; the party has built its power on them.

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In the aftermath of the violent insurrection at the Capitol on January 6, I have watched as Republicans and some Democrats expressed their shock and horror at what happened: Unthinkable, unprecedented, appalling, and unbelievable, they’ve said. Of course, I understand that jolt of fear and surprise; it is human, and correct, to feel destabilized by the reality of chilling, violent revolt, and democratic upheaval. But none of this was unpredictable. Part of what I have marveled at most, over the past week, is how explicit, loud, and public a strain of the American right has been in broadcasting its violent political agenda — even before the election of Donald Trump.

What happened last week should not have been a shock to any of us. It has been years that hard right-wingers — including but most definitely not limited to the man who is still president of the United States — have been openly threatening violence grounded in racist and misogynistic resentments. For years, they’ve made it clear that they see their only path to victory as being through bloodshed. What’s interesting is how those threats have been heard, and by whom they have been taken seriously before now.

Before the 2016 election, Trump friend and Republican operative Roger Stone went on Milo Yiannopoulos’s podcast and predicted that there would be voter fraud leading to a Hillary Clinton victory. “This election will be illegitimate,” Stone said. “The winner will be illegitimate. We will have a constitutional crisis. We will have widespread civil disobedience … It will be a bloodbath.”

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the body politic

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Click the link below for the article:

https://www.thecut.com/2021/01/the-capitol-riots-happened-just-like-the-right-threatened.html#_ga=2.18446713.1371199348.1610733664-1736106870.1610733663

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Republican Party faces rage from both pro- and anti-Trump voters

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After riots at the U.S. Capitol by President Donald Trump’s supporters, the Republican Party is facing defections from two camps of voters it can’t afford to lose: those saying Trump and his allies went too far in contesting the election of Democrat Joe Biden – and those saying they didn’t go far enough, according to new polling and interviews with two dozen voters.

Paul Foster – a 65-year-old house painter in Ellsworth, Maine – is furious at party leaders for refusing to back the president’s claims that the election was stolen with millions of fraudulent votes. “The party is going to be totally broken” if it abandons Trump, Foster says, predicting Trump loyalists will spin off into a new third party.

Marc Cupelo – a retired business consultant in Syracuse, New York – couldn’t feel more differently. A lifelong Republican, he regretted voting for Trump as he watched the president’s backers storm the Capitol last Wednesday, inspired by Trump’s fiery rhetoric and false election-fraud claims. Now he wants the party to banish Trump and carve out a less-divisive future, free of the “twisted values” held by some of his supporters.

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https://www.aol.com/news/republican-party-faces-rage-both-022932217-174236948.html

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Dozens of people on FBI terrorist watch list came to D.C. the day of Capitol riot

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Dozens of people on a terrorist watch list were in Washington for pro-Trump events Jan. 6, a day that ended in a chaotic crime rampage when a violent mob stormed the U.S. Capitol, according to people familiar with evidence gathered in the FBI’s investigation.

The majority of the watch-listed individuals in Washington that day are suspected white supremacists whose past conduct so alarmed investigators that their names had been previously entered into the national Terrorist Screening Database, or TSDB, a massive set of names flagged as potential security risks, these people said. The watch list is larger and separate from the “no-fly” list the government maintains to prevent terrorism suspects from boarding airplanes, and those listed are not automatically barred from any public or commercial spaces, current and former officials said.

The presence of so many watch-listed individuals in one place — without more robust security measures to protect the public — is another example of the intelligence failures preceding last week’s fatal assault that sent lawmakers running for their lives, some current and former law enforcement officials argued. The revelation follows a Washington Post report earlier this week detailing the FBI’s failure to act aggressively on an internal intelligence report of Internet discussions about plans to attack Congress, smash windows, break down doors and “get violent . . . go there ready for war.”

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a large crowd of people standing in front of a building: Supporters of President Trump mob the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6. © Evelyn Hockstein/For The Washington Post Supporters of President Trump mob the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.

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https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/dozens-of-people-on-fbi-terrorist-watch-list-came-to-dc-the-day-of-capitol-riot/ar-BB1cL1mx?ocid=se

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Republicans Oppose Impeachment Because It Makes Them Look Pro-Riot

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The spectacle of a pro-Trump mob sacking the Capitol in an attempt to cancel the election result was so revolting that even the president’s most devoted sycophants felt compelled to denounce it. And yet the continued gravitational pull of the Trump cult requires them to construct justifications for supporting Trump anyway.

The cleverest rationales have sprung from the party’s most elite-trained sophists. Senator Josh Hawley argued yesterday that endorsing Trump’s attempt to reverse the election was actually a way to stand up to the mob. Ben Shapiro, guest-authoring today’s Playbook, has exceeded Hawley and produced an even more breathtaking rationale. After talking to numerous Republicans in Congress, Shapiro reports that they oppose impeachment because it is a ploy “to cudgel them collectively by lumping them in with the Capitol rioters thanks to their support for Trump.” Here’s his full passage:

Many in the media seem bewildered that House Republicans didn’t unanimously join Democrats in supporting impeachment (looking at you, Playbook readers in the media) — after all, Republicans were in the building when rioters broke through, seeking to do them grievous physical harm. My Republican sources tell me that opposition to impeachment doesn’t spring from generalized sanguinity over Trump’s behavior: I’ve been receiving calls and texts for more than a week from elected Republicans heartsick over what they saw in the Capitol.

Opposition to impeachment comes from a deep and abiding conservative belief that members of the opposing political tribe want their destruction, not simply to punish Trump for his behavior. Republicans believe that Democrats and the overwhelmingly liberal media see impeachment as an attempt to cudgel them collectively by lumping them in with the Capitol rioters thanks to their support for Trump.

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Photo: Mostafa Bassim/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

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Click the link below for article:

https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/01/republicans-impeaching-trump-would-make-us-look-pro-riot.html

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