[T]rying to disqualify Trump through a dubious, convoluted 14th Amendment process after discouraging the Senate from doing so via a quick, clean, legally sound conviction mirrors the eternal shortsightedness of the Republican establishment in dealing with Trump. 

There’s always some other institution, and some other time, that’s better suited to hold him accountable. 

Senate Republicans declined to end Trump’s political career after January 6 when they had the chance because they assumed the criminal courts would eventually do it for them. Now that the courts have taken up the matter, those same Republicans have been compelled by pressure from their voters to argue that Trump’s prosecutions are politicized and illegitimate. Only the voters themselves can properly issue a verdict on him, they insist.

But voters tried that in 2020 and you know how it ended. It’ll end the same way this year if Trump loses again, with the very same Republicans alleging that the American people couldn’t possibly have voted the way they appear to have voted.

Every opportunity to banish him from politics is a missed opportunity, by design.

Nick Catoggio

February 14, 2024

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