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While Biden works to strengthen democracy at home and abroad, Trump is still doing “Putin's job”.

Clinton did not hit, stating straight away that Trump, as President, "gave Putin the green light to do whatever he wanted … once (Putin) helped him vote, of course." She added, "Trump raised (Putin) … Russia and Putin … raised against our own country and our own president."

Not only did she condemn the man who lost an election and tried to steal it, but everyone who helped and helped him and continues to do so – in other words, most of the Republican Party, both federal and federal at federal level.

We have people in our own country doing Putin's job. Whether, as we say, knowingly or unknowingly, they are doing his job to sow distrust, sow division, to give help and consolation to those in our country who for some reason are not only disruptive but also very dangerous are.

If Trump is Republicans – including Candidates Candidate for office in 2022—to press the big lie every day across the country they are to do Putin's work – although luckily there is some evidence that the Orange Julius Caesar is supported even within his own party decreasing. But if he does tells People he'll be "reinstated" as president in August – a fantasy that 30% of Republicans believe will happen and that is of real concern in the Department of Homeland Security – Trump is doing Putin's job. If Trump's henchmen consolidate Republican control over the counting of votes (in Georgia), or use their existing power in red states across the country to make it happen Heavier to choose – but easier to attract for their party – or to join activities like the Arizona. to participate Scam (Which most Americans recognize as invalid, partisan bullshit), they are doing Putin's job. As for the scam, one of the rumors sparked by these bogus efforts actually had enough steam to be recognized by Reuters Fact check necessary.

Posts claiming that the 2020 general election ballots were burned in a farm fire in Maricopa County are false. District officials said the ballot papers were first removed from a tabbing center vault before being shipped to the Arizona Senate. Investigations by the sheriff into a farm fire did not reveal any burnt ballot papers.

Examples can be seen Here and Here.

The text in one post reads: “A friend called me when he found out that ballot papers were being torn up on the farm. I told them not to worry, tell them I could still do the forensic exam on the shredded paper. The smoking weapon is that the paper will prove that some were printed in China. An hour later it was on fire. The fire burned two huge barns. It killed 162,000 laying hens. Hickman is the chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors. He owns Hickman Egg Farms. That wasn't a coincidence. "

Enough with chicken and egg stories, let's get back to the facts. When Trump stirred up a riot and when he and his party lie afterwards over, i don't know every single aspect of it, easily convincing huge numbers of Republican voters who believe them – they are doing Putin's job. The level of refusal is so profound and so pathological that Republican MP Andrew Clyde refused Shake hands with Michael Fanone, a DC Metro police officer who was beaten by the Trump-loving insurgents. Instead, Clyde ran "like a coward" away.

I think Republicans only believe "blue lives matter" when the police aren't looking down Team red.

Royce Lamberth, a Republican-appointed federal judge, laced To Republican deniers during a conviction hearing for the first insurgent to be tried for the crimes committed that day: “I am particularly concerned about reports from some members of Congress that January 6th was just a day when tourists were passing through went to the Capitol. “Said the judge. “I don't know what planet they were on. … This was not a peaceful demonstration. It was no accident that she turned violent; it should stop the functioning of our government. "

When Trump, before January 6th, tries To urge the Justice Department to announce that they are investigating something, anything that would question President Biden's victory, he was … well, you now know whose job he was doing. The emails Trump officials, including Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, sent to the DOJ were as absurd as they were dangerous. Virginia Heffernan from The Atlantic marked described them as "shameless and hair-raising … full of gonzo talk" and added that "they stink of desperation". Senior DOJ official Richard Donoghue read a number of them and called them "sheer madness."

Now imagine what would have happened if Trump's White House had managed to get incumbent Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen to believe him about the election irregularities and an investigation had been announced in December 2020. And imagine how many Trumpists left the Capitol on January 6th under such a scenario – perhaps enough to have achieved their goal of preventing Biden's victory from being confirmed and harming members of Congress or even the Vice President. Perhaps the Trump coup would have succeeded.

If you just look at what actually happened, the twice-accused former president damaged our democracy to an unpredictable degree from which we may never fully recover. An overwhelming majority of respondents said they were concerned that the US was "becoming less democratic," according to a recently published daily Kos / Civiqs. survey. As President Barack Obama explained on June 28th: ​​"If we don't stop this kind of effort now, we will see more and more competitive elections … We will see a further de-legitimization of our democracy (and) … a breakdown of the basic agreement that made this great democratic experiment all of these." Years together. ”When that happens, the opponents of democracy and America alike will be delighted.

Trump's anti-democratic actions were seen long before January 6th or even November 3rd. In addition, they continue to this day. On the holiday weekend of July 4th, the former reality TV star seemed to confirm the basic facts underlying the recent New York charges against the Trump organization, but then claimed that he was responsible for them only because of politics. Sounding just like the demagogue he is, Trump said the case is "reminiscent of a communist dictatorship targeting your political opponents". No sir. In a dictatorship, the Fiihrer's crimes go unpunished, but in a healthy democracy nobody is above the law – not even a former president.

The fundamental problem, of course, is that our political system is highly polarized in ways that are fundamentally different from the other democracies with which we share a lot. Above all, one person is responsible for this, like Thomas B. Edsall explained.

Trump has mobilized and consolidated a cohort that is now in control of the Republican Party, a breakaway segment of the electorate who is perhaps a third of all voters who despise democratic principles, embrace and seek authoritarian techniques to crush racial and cultural liberalism tear down the electoral machinery and suffer the mass madness that Trump won last November.

Regardless of whether or not Trump runs again, he has left an enormous footprint – a black mark – in American politics that will shape the elections for years to come.

As an expression of our profound polarization, Americans express far more negative feelings about the opposing political party than people in our peer countries – a discrepancy that has grown steadily since Reagan's presidency.

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What is the main cause of the polarization afflicting American politics? According to Lee Drutman, Write For FiveThirtyEight it is very clear: The USA is the only major Western democracy in which one of the two largest parties acts like the Republicans do.

In the US, one party has become a major illiberal runaway: the Republican Party. Scholarship holders at the V-Dem Institute at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden have observed and evaluated political parties around the world. And a big area of ​​study for them is liberalism and illiberalism, or a party's commitment (or lack thereof) to pre-election democratic norms. And as the graph below shows, the Republican Party has more with the Republican Party of conservative, right-wing parties around the world dangerously authoritarian parties in the Hungary and Turkey than with conservative parties in the UK or Germany.

In the chart below, note both their gradual departure from a commitment to democratic principles throughout the Obama presidency and the even tougher right turn the party took as a particular one modern Mussolini took over the reins in 2016.

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There's one other data point I'd like to mention, and this one doesn't require a fancy graph: do you know how many advanced democracies have suffered a violent uprising aimed at overthrowing the results of a legitimate election and installing the loser – started a riot? from said loser, ie the leader of his party?

The answer is one.

I said at the outset that few people could rival Secretary Clinton when it came to understanding geopolitics. Fortunately, one of those few people is currently the President of the United States. Joe Biden absolutely understands the global implications of repelling – or not doing – Trump's attacks on our democracy. Because of this, Biden keeps talking about US democracy serving as an attractive model for other nations and emphasizing the global competition between democracy and autocracy. He formulated this competition – which he clearly sees as fundamental to his presidency – in his first address to the congress.

The uprising was an existential crisis – a test of whether our democracy could survive. It did. But the fight is far from over. The question of whether our democracy will last for a long time is ancient and urgent. As old as our republic. Still vital today.

Can our democracy keep its promise that we all – created in God's image – have the chance to lead a life of dignity, respect and opportunity? Can our democracy meet the most pressing needs of our people? Can our democracy overcome the lies, anger, hatred and fears that have torn us apart?

America's opponents – the world's autocrats – are betting that it won't work. They believe that we are too full of anger, division, and anger. They view the images of the mob who raided this Capitol as evidence that the sun is setting on American democracy. You are wrong. And we have to prove them wrong. We have to prove that democracy still works. That our government still works – and can deliver for the people.

Foreign policy experts have commended Biden for highlighting this topic, such as Kori Schake, the director of foreign and defense policy at the American Enterprise Institute. Schake worked as the senior policy advisor for the McCain campaign in 2008, but was one of several McCain alums who advocates the democratic candidate in 2020. Schake explained that Biden's approach to centering democracy in international affairs was the “right” and necessary to counter what the Chinese government is doing: “China argues that its authoritarian capitalism is predictable and wealthy, while the American model is socially divisive, politically unpredictable and economically inconsiderate. ”So Trump is not only doing Putin's job, he is also doing the job of China's President Xi Jinping.

Biden knows the world is following this competition. It's part of what he's doing with the recent announcement from significant Covid-19 vaccine donations in the US – it should be 80 million assigned Delivered by the end of June and shortly thereafter – as well as a total of half a billion cans. Competition is also why it has encouraged our democratic allies to also step up efforts made in the announcement that the G-7 countries would donate more than a billion vaccine doses in the next year.

Unfortunately for the countries that have received vaccines from China, the latest evidence shows that they "may not be very effective in preventing the spread of the virus, particularly the new variants". Four of the top 10 – in terms of the worst COVID-19 outbreaks to date – have vaccination rates higher than the US. However, all four have largely relied on vaccines from Chinese manufacturers Sinovac and Sinopharm.

Since last summer, China has searched To use “vaccination diplomacy” to strengthen his “soft power”, and it continues to do so despite the relative ineffectiveness of the shots. While the US and its other democracies are not asking for vaccines in return, make no mistake about Biden's desire to show the world that democracies can better serve their own citizens and everyone else than autocracies.

The President wants to show that this is not just true of principles like freedom and equality – and despite the shortcomings of our country, Biden can effectively argue that we are still better by comparison on these issues; just ask them Uighurs, or the Chechens, or someone who opposes the government in China (Hong Kong and elsewhere) or Russia. By comparison, at least under Biden and the Democrats, we are working to correct our mistakes. Furthermore, democracies can provide the goods for things like the vaccine, things that can save lives in a crisis.

In general, last month's G-7 summit has shown how much more effective collaboration between democracies has been since Biden became president. The leaders of the other governments present expressed a strong sense of relief that they could focus on the productive work rather than the distractions Trump always put on them. You are ready to move on. As a European civil servant expressed"I don't think anyone sees any value in repeating what happened in the previous administration."

Even if a contentious issue arose during the summit, this president knew better how to promote our values ​​and interests while maintaining cordial relations between our allies noticed by CNN. At one point, Biden urged other leaders to loudly urge China's anti-democratic practices, officials said, stressing the need to take action. Although leaders disagreed, after four years of tension under Trump, the meeting saw renewed respect among leaders.

We can also compare Biden's approach to that of the completely amoral Trump – the subordinate the need to support democratic values ​​for the almighty dollar. Trump card promised President Xi that he would shut up about Hong Kong, and even told His Chinese counterpart thought it was “just right” to put more than a million Uyghurs and members of other ethnic minorities in concentration camps. Could you imagine Joe Biden ever acting like this to get a trade deal, or for any other reason?

"Democracy vs. autocracy is the struggle of our time." William J. Barber II laid flat this mark on July 5th. Joe Biden knows that global competition between democracies and autocracies is a long game. Although he knows how to help democracies win, his predecessor decides time and again to help the other side. As William Saletan from Slate Put it"As Biden works to project solidarity and determination, he is hampered by a political base that Trump built for Putin in the United States: a republican party infested with Kremlin sympathizers and NATO opponents." Whether Trump fully understands what he's doing doesn't matter because they People do around him, and they just care about nothing but their own power. Not even the fate of democracy and freedom worldwide.

Is there a commitment from Trump and his Republican Party to America as a unit, regardless of the fact that it is a vessel through which they can exercise power? It certainly doesn't look like it. If they can't rule our country, they won't love it or even get excited about it – two separate polls show that Republicans give Putin a higher net positive rating than Joe Biden – by about 20 points. Why? Because that's how the leader of their party told them to think.

But that's not patriotism.

American patriotism is meant to mean that you are not working to manipulate our political system just to consolidate control over the levers of power. Instead, patriots work to make our country better, stronger, and fairer. Patriotism means that while you are competing in the democratic process you also respect the process itself and value it as a core element of what our country stands for that you refuse to undermine it in order to gain more control.

Secretary Clinton got it right: the problem is more than just that Trump Republicans put their party's interests first. What they do in the name of partisanship and seizure of power at any cost weakens our country, both domestically and internationally. In making our policies so dysfunctional, they are undermining not only the US, but democracy as a whole in the eyes of the world. Trump and his apparatchiks make the autocratic model – embodied by China under President Xi – appear more stable and functional in comparison. Trump is not only Putin's puppet, he is unwittingly acting in the interests of the Chinese government.

Meanwhile, President Biden has not only worked to adopt progressive legislative policies, but also to strengthen our democratic system.

In other words, he did America's job.

Ian Reifowitz is the author of The Tribization of Politics: How Rush Limbaugh’s Race-Baiting Rhetoric on the Obama Presidency Paved the Way for Trump (preface by Markos Moulitsas)

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